You never know where inspiration will strike.
That’s something that North Kildonan-based writer and producer Laurie Fischer has come to learn.
"There’s so much to write about, the inspiration comes from all over," said Fischer, whose book of poetry Musings on a Life Well Lived is now available. "It’s all around us. It comes at the strangest of times."
Musings is the second collection of poetry from Fischer to be released via Friesen Press in as many years. When the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic hit in March 2020, Fischer, who has long been active as a producer of the North Kildonan Community Players drama group, took to writing poetry to cope with the isolation brought on by public health measures. In 2020, he published the collection Poetry of the Pandemic.
"My poetry is still aimed to help motivate and uplift the spirits of people, to look with hope to the future," Fischer said.
Fischer added that the reaction to his first collection encouraged him to keep writing. Musings is the second book in a planned trilogy of poetry collections, organized thematically on the past, the present, and the future.
"Poetry of the Pandemic was the present, we were living it," Fischer explained. "Musings on a Life Well Lived is me writing about the past. I’m in the process of continuing to write, and hopefully in a year or two I’ll have the final volume."
Without being able to put on the big stage shows he was used to producing, directing, and often acting in with the North Kildonan Community Players, Fischer threw himself into writing with gusto.
"It keeps me sane," he said. "I write a lot about the world around us."
While his first collection focused a lot on how people were dealing with the pandemic in its early days, Musings also finds Fischer looking back on his life and many historic and cultural events that came to define his generation.
"It’s about reliving the past, and not just my past, but everyone’s past," he said.
He also writes about his twin passions of music and sports, as well as his two dogs.
"I love writing about my two puppies," he said. "I’ve had lots of fun with that."
An avid cyclist ever since he was diagnosed with cancer in 2018, Fischer said the seeds of many of his poems are planted on his rides, then fleshed out in the early hours of the morning when he writes.
"It became easy to write, because here we are moving into the future, and people are much more positive than they were just under two years ago," Fischer said.
As with Poetry of the Pandemic, Fischer also plans to donate some proceeds from sales of Musings to the Never Alone Cancer Foundation.
Those looking to purchase a copy of Musings on a Life Well Lived, which retails for $25, can contact Fischer at 204-890-8999.
Sheldon Birnie is the reporter/photographer for The Herald. The author of Missing Like Teeth: An Oral History of Winnipeg Underground Rock (1990-2001), his writing has appeared in journals and online platforms across Canada, the U.S. and the U.K. A husband and father of two young children, Sheldon enjoys playing guitar and rec hockey when he can find the time. Email him at email@example.com Call him at 204-697-7112