North Saanich author George Mercer, whose latest book Fat Cats recently won a gold medal at the 2019 Independent Publisher Book Awards for Best Regional Fiction, Canada West. (Photo courtesy of George Mercer)

Local author wins gold medal for new book Fat Cats

Former parks warden’s series welcomes new addition to the canon

Award-winning North Saanich author George Mercer claimed two more prizes at the 2019 Independent Publisher Book Awards for Best Regional Fiction (Canada West).

Mercer’s latest book Fat Cats won a Gold Medal and the series it is from, Dyed in The Green, secured a Silver Medal in the Best Fiction Series category.

ALSO READ: Troubling tales: Peninsula author writes Sixties Scoop memoir

“My plan is a six book series. I’ve got four out and essentially the characters have gone from Cape Breton highlands in Nova Scotia to Wood Buffalo National Park in the north, then to Jasper in Alberta, and then the Gulf Islands in the fourth book.”

If you’ve noticed a theme of national parks, it’s because Mercer spent 30 years as a park warden across Canada, and his former profession inspires his writing.

The first three books in the series are called Dyed In The Green, Wood Buffalo and Jasper Wild. The latter two won gold medals last year as well.

Mercer writes diligently, completing the four books in quick succession, with each one only taking a year to complete, from first draft to finished product.

ALSO READ: Sidney jazz singer who kicked off career after age 50, heads on B.C. tour

“I find writing comes quite easily but the challenge with the series is making a logical sequence of stories that have a larger story arc and each one has a smaller one that provides a bridge to the next,” he says.

For readers eager to know what’s in store for the future, Mercer says, “My plans for the fifth and sixth books are to go to the east coast and wrap up in Cape Breton where the series began.”

He plans to bring the main character, Ben Matthews, back from his sojourn in Africa and introduce an international flavour to the series. After that, the plan is to write the real-life stories behind the characters and to branch out into young adult fiction.

ALSO READ: Whatever happened to elevator music?

Perhaps in keeping with his prolific output, Mercer is not short of ideas. In the works are western, futuristic and historical pieces. More imminently is a story he has already completed a draft of, about a young girl defending a family of grizzly bears wrongly accused of mauling mountain bikers.

Mercer says Fat Cats can be read as a stand-alone story and readers familiar with the Gulf Islands will find some familiar themes and settings woven throughout the story. The book can be found at independent book stores in the region.

For more information visit georgemercer.com.


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

The strange case of Jesokah Adkens

All was not what it seemed in Sooke girl’s disappearance 18 years ago

High of 21 C for Wednesday

Plus your weekend forecast

UVic science and engineering research gets $18.8 million federal funding boost

Funding for engineering, science, sustainability research

Horse carriage supporters to rally outside city hall

Owner of carriage company plans rally in response to Coun. Ben Isitt’s motion

Killer of Calgary mother, daughter gets no parole for 50 years

A jury found Edward Downey guilty last year in the deaths of Sara Baillie, 34, and five-year-old Taliyah Marsman

Thetis housing project clouded by confusion

View Royal mayor clarifies details about Capital Region Housing Corporation project

Raptors beat Bucks 120-102 to even series at 2-2

Lowry pours in 25 as Toronto moves within two games of NBA Finals

Body of missing snowmobiler recovered from Great Slave Lake

Police confirm the body is that of one of three missing snowmobilers

Christmas morning burglar sentenced on Vancouver Island

Justin Redmond Feusse, 20, sentenced to 240 days in jail for Dec. 25 break-and-enter

‘Conservation financing’ could stop old-growth logging

Reader says with this type of financing province recognizes the benefit of forests

So, do you know ‘Dave from Vancouver Island’?

Ontario man searching for fellow he travelled with in Europe 50 years ago

Toddler seriously injured after falling from Okanagan balcony

RCMP are investigating after a two-year-old boy fell from the balcony of an apartment in Kelowna

Mamma Mia! Here we go again at Sooke’s EMCS theatre

Production of Mamma Mi! features ABBA tunes that leave you humming

Most Read