Brady Harrison has worked as a reporter, a research officer for the Métis Settlements of northern Alberta, a piano mover, and a construction yardman. His short fiction, poetry, and essays have appeared in numerous journals, including Aethlon, High Desert Journal, The Long Story, and Short Story. He is the author, editor, or co-editor of several books, including the collection The Term Between, the novella The Dying Athabaskan, and the forthcoming novel A Journey to Al Ramel — all three from Twelve Winters. Originally from Hope, British Columbia, he lives in Missoula, Montana, and has also lived and worked in France and Ireland.
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The Term Between
In these stories, set in Montana, the North American West, and farther afield, Brady Harrison explores the fragile ties that bind, and often break, as the characters do their best to navigate the complexities of a sometime chaotic, sometime hopeful, sometime violent world. In the opening story, “The Guest,” a reporter attempts to understand the actions of a woman involved in a devastating accident. In “The Sumerian in the Driveway,” a transplanted Canadian living in Montana plays street hockey with an ancient Sumerian and listens closely to the 3000 year old man’s tale of a fateful journey. In still other stories, as an unexpected event brings a community of outcasts together, a young protagonist attempts to sort through what she does and does not know about a ghostly, fearful man even more out of place than the rest; a Montana college student, working on the killfloor of a meatpacking plant, finds himself in a place he might not want to be; a documentary filmmaker from Missoula joins two kayakers to run a daunting river in the Andes. The collection closes with “The Dying Albertan,” a novella about a notorious Canadian artist who refuses to tell the truth either about himself or his work; hired to interview Niall O’Keevan on the 25th anniversary of his most famous piece, Ritu Agarwal suspects not only that the monstrous sculpture tells a story, but that the story O’Keevan tells about the work may not be the truth. In these strange, challenging, and beautifully written tales, Harrison takes us through the maelstrom of the term between, our few moments between eternities.
Praise for The Term Between
“Brady Harrison’s short stories, The Term Between, give us what good art gives: a stranger, darker, yet more beautiful and compassionate view the world. Whether kayaking a wild river, soldiering in the mountains of Afghanistan, playing driveway hockey with a ghost, drinking with a dangerous doppelganger under a pier on the coast of Spain—his characters, like all of us, are driven by mysteries too deep to name, and find themselves in places they cannot yet imagine. But the masterpiece of this collection is the novella, The Dying Albertan. A profound beauty of a story, it reveals the folly of our cravings to make a distinct and clear creation narrative for either a piece of art, or for ourselves. We are all of us everything—we’ve the blood of all of human history in our veins. And although we might love to imagine the cleanliness of our own concise selves or communities, the suffering of one us is—as always—the suffering of us all.”
— David Allan Cates, author of the novel Tom Connor’s Gift, and Imagining Tanya, short stories
“Say you’ve written a novella that reads like Nude Descending a Staircase would sound if Ornette Coleman were slapping hockey pucks in high wind with his sax. You could say it if you were Margaret Atwood or Michael Ondaatje or your name’s Brady Harrison (it’s not) and you got the wicked game of a Cirque du Soleil juggler (do you really?). You could say it if you were the one who wrote “The Dying Albertan” (you didn’t), a novella you’ll read straight through, then backwards, and maybe upside down and all around to get the full effect. And if that weren’t enough (it’s more than enough), the eleven stories that precede it make the perfect flight of martinis. I won’t list them all, but come on: A Body in Your Windshield, Cream Soda Breaks My Heart, Killing a Buddy Is Funny, and Sumerians Don’t Mess? I’m not messing either when I say drink up and read on, straight to the end of The Term Between, which builds masterfully to that strange and compelling novella you’ll wish you’d written. It’s that kind of book, a keeper that will call you back.”
— Steve Davenport, author of Bruise Songs
“From the opening story’s image of horror to the closing novella’s title figure, Brady Harrison’s debut story collection packs a wallop through a series of arresting images. The stories inhabit a range of geographies: Cleveland, British Columbia, Afghanistan, Chile, the Basque coast, the Pintler mountains in Montana. Harrison’s characters face tough circumstances and bleak choices. The Term Between reveals an assured hand, one that leaves the reader anticipating more stories.”
— O. Alan Weltzien, author of Savage West: The Life and Fiction of Thomas Savage
“Brady Harrison sets his stories in the meat packing plants, failing farms, and art galleries of places like Anaconda, Vancouver, and San Sebastian to expand the literary landscape and imaginative possibilities of the west and the western. “
— Randi Tanglen, Co-editor of Teaching Western American Literature
The Dying Athabaskan
Hired to interview a Canadian artist on the 25th anniversary of his most infamous creation, “The Dying Athabaskan,” Ritu Agarwal wonders if she may be getting in over her head: Niall O’Keevan, a notorious fabulist, hates to talk about himself or his work and he has been known to spin lies and tell tales. Yet Ritu needs the work, and when she meets O’Keevan at his studio, he begins to tell her the story behind the sculpture of a bizarre, shattered man: how much of it is true, and has the young freelancer discovered the key when she wonders aloud if the statue is really three people pieced together into one monstrous form. . . ? “The Dying Athabaskan” is the winner of Twelve Winters Press’s Publisher’s Long Story Prize.
Interviews with Brady Harrison
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