Kevin Major was born on September 12, 1949, five months after Newfoundland became the tenth province of Canada. He grew up next to an American Air Force base in Stephenville, on the province’s west coast.

His interest in writing in elementary school led to the creation of some dreadful poetry. In high school, his skills improved to the point where a teacher in Grade Ten predicted that he would write a book some day.

At graduation, however, he went off to study pre-med at Memorial University in St. John’s. He was accepted for medical school, but turned it down. He wanted to see a bit of the world instead. He slept on a beach in Barbados, skied in Switzerland, saw the Gauguins in Paris.

He returned to Memorial University, and set his mind on becoming a teacher. He graduated and found work in several communities in rural Newfoundland. He was struck by the lack of material on the English curriculum reflecting the culture of his own province. The result was the editing of Doryloads, an anthology of Newfoundland writing.

From there he went on to writing of his own: first poetry and short stories, then a novel. It made the rounds of several publishers, but was finally shelved.

By this time he had settled in Eastport, in Bonavista Bay, Newfoundland. In 1976 he gave up teaching full-time to concentrate on writing, although he continued work as a substitute teacher for several years following.

He wrote Hold Fast and his life changed permanently. Over the years other novels followed, no two alike, yet most holding in some way to his Newfoundland roots.

He married and took on fatherhood. Eventually the Major family moved to St. John’s. Here the author writes in view of Signal Hill, an interesting garden and a basketball net. He walks the streets of the oldest city in North America thinking about what he will write next.


Comments are closed.