The Decade in Fiction

From foot fetishes to the perils of poetic success this is the fiction that helped define Canada

The Decade in Fiction

As the 2010s come to close, we look back at a mix of your favourite stories and speakers. From foot fetishes to the perils of poetic success, this is the fiction that helped define Canada




The Shoe Emporium

BY LISA MOORE
His nodding effects a reluctant intimacy, as if many a customer could not get this kind of attention out of Steve




Bye Judy and Good Luck

BY MONA AWAD
Judy shakes her head sadly. She winces as if even that hurts. Then she tells us how she got so drunk last night that she decided she’d try to get her dog and cat to make friends



Illustration by Nicole Xu

My Pleasure

BY ALIX HAWLEY
The McDonald’s had been there for decades, built in sunnier days, but it couldn’t last



Writing, Success, How to Step Back

BY JASON MCBRIDE
I was told there wasn’t a market for poetry until my book became a bestseller. What if success makes me lose my authentic voice?


Illustration by Lauren Tamaki

Tax Niʔ Pik̓ak (A Long Time Ago)

BY TROY SEBASTIAN / NUPQU ʔA·Kǂ AM̓
Ka titi had been alive longer than most of the people on the reserve. She remembered when David Thompson arrived in Ktunaxa ʔamak̓is



Illustration by Kinomi

The Rainbow Festival

BY SEAN MICHAELS
Every year, my mother transformed our home into an inn. The parlour became the gentlemen’s lounge, the dining room became the breakfast nook, and most of the other rooms were turned into guest bedrooms




Meet You at the Door

BY LAWRENCE HILL
I had been typing since I was thirteen. On my mother’s L.C. Smith, my friend Howie and I made up our own Typing Olympics



Shary Boyle Imagines Art’s Survival

BY SHARY BOYLE
A short story about art at the end of the world



Seal

BY KATHRYN KUITENBROUWER
An endless sea, the horizon exquisite, with a particular blue-yellow light glancing off it




We Be Naked

BY ZSUZSI GARTNER
Our demands be modest. We not be asking for the moons of Jupiter. Clean air to breathe, clean water to drink



Alcoholic anonymous and podium

Working Clean

BY NABEN RUTHNUM
Richie felt around beneath the cushion he was sitting on and pulled out a miniature Raptors basketball, then started bouncing it off the wall behind the TV



Illustration by Genevieve Simms

A Recognized Man

BY MICHAEL HARRIS
Timothy nodded and listened to their footsteps awhile, trying to straighten his mind after the boozy dinner




A System From the North

BY ALIX OHLIN
For losing a child, she knew she would be fired. She had plenty of experience with fireable offences


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Jennifer Hollett I have been digging into the pages of The Walrus Summer Reading issue and remarking at all of the contributions from our former and current Fellows. It reminds me that every issue of The Walrus is a result of a culmination of efforts (including lengthy fact-checking) from the editorial team, the emerging journalists they train, and the generous supporters who make all of this happen.

Through The Walrus Editorial Fellowship Program, we have the privilege of training the next generation of professionals who are passionate about the integrity of journalism. In the Summer Reading issue, 2021 Cannonbury Fellow Connor Garel wrote a piece on Frankie Perez and the art of breaking. Tajja Isen contributed an excerpt from her first book, Some of my Best Friends. Isen, who also began her career at The Walrus as a Cannonbury Fellow, is currently Editor-in-Chief at Catapult magazine.

Our 2022 Chawkers Fellow, Mashal Butt, was instrumental in making sure we got the facts straight in our Summer Reading issue, having fact-checked six features, including Sarah Totton’s short story “The Click.” And, you can look forward to a cover story on housing affordability by our 2022 Justice Fund Writer in Residence, JS Rutgers. (Rutgers is now a climate reporter for The Narwhal.)

Donations of any amount (great or small) mean that we can keep on training future journalists in the rigorous practice of fact-checking and editing. With your support, we can continue to keep The Walrus available to readers everywhere as well as help foster the next generation of reporters, copy-editors, fact-checkers, and editors.

With gratitude,

Jennifer Hollett
Executive Director, The Walrus