Douglas George Fetherling was UNB’s nineteenth writer-in-residence for the 2000-2001 academic year. He was born in Wheeling, West Virginia on January 1st, 1949, but left the US as a young teenager due to his claim of being "disillusioned all the more by the war going on at the time and especially by the abiding racism." He talks freely about how he grew up "dirt poor" and was psychologically abused by his alchoholic mother (an issue he deals with in his book Travels by Night: a Memoir of the Sixties). At 18 he fled to Toronto and became employed with the publisher House of Anansi; he was, in fact, Anansi's first employee. He took up writing due to a speech impediment which affected his life immensly; he said of his speech impediment, "it was seriously debilitating and life altering until I was about 35. I still stutter somewhat." He held a previous writer-in-residence position at Queen’s University in 1993, and was a contributing editor for a number of magazines, including Quill and Quire, The Toronto Star, The Kingston Whig-Standard, and Toronto Life. By the time Fetherling took residence, he was already known fairly well in the province of New Brunswick due to his time as a weekly books columist in The New Brunswick Reader.
George Fetherling had created over 50 works by 1999, ranging from poetry to social history to autobiography. Aside from that, he has been author and editor of over 50 books, and has had paintings put up on exhibit in Toronto and Vancouver. Fetherling was awarded the 1995 Harbourfront Festival Prize, and an honorary Doctor of Letters from St. Mary's University in 1997.
Fetherling held a reading in the Alumni Memorial Lounge on September 26th.
UA Case 191; Section 2; George [Douglas] Fetherling
© UNB Archives & Special Collections, 2014