Wayne Forster

LOWER SACKVILLE: A new work of fiction from a former resident of Isle Madame is now available online.

Wayne Forster recently wrote and self-published a novel entitled One More Dance.

Forster, the author of three books and numerous articles for magazines and publications throughout Canada, the United States, and Europe, is a former journalist and news editor. He currently writes two blogs, one on travel and one on business.

Born in England in 1950 and raised in Toronto and Halifax, Forster moved to Little Anse in 1968, where his mother is from originally, when he was 17 years old.

He graduated from Isle Madame District High in Arichat after a year-and-a-half, then earned his degree from Saint Mary’s University in 1972.

He recounted that his first job out of university was as a reporter with the Scotia Sun in Port Hawkesbury, later becoming a news editor for a couple of years.

Forester was hired as the recreation director with the Municipality of the County of Richmond for seven years, then worked with what later became InRich in Louisdale until 1987, and later started working in private consulting.

Forster lived in Arichat until moving to Halifax in 1989. His wife Helen is from Samson’s Cove.

“We had the house in Arichat there for 11 years after we got married,” he recalled.

Forster also played in the Richmond Amateur Baseball Association for approximately 12 seasons first with Little Anse, then with Arichat.

Although it’s fictional and not biographical , Forster said One More Dance was inspired by his mother.

“It is a work of fiction, and I have to be clear with all my family about that. It was inspired by my mother’s early life and her time in Halifax during the Second World War,” he stated. “It’s a story about a young lady in Halifax during the war, my mother lived in Halifax during the war. The main character is a waitress, my mother was a waitress. So there’s a lot of similarities like that, but it is not biographical, it’s fiction. The stories, and the circumstances, and the incidents that happened did not happen to my mother, for the most part, they are fictional.”

Set between 1942 and 1945, mostly in Halifax, Forster said it’s a story about a high spirited young woman named Josie (who is named for Forster’s grandmother Josephine Boudreau) from a small Nova Scotia fishing village who moves to the bustling wartime port of Halifax during World War II to find work.

According to the website, one night at a dance, Josie meets a British sailor and falls madly in love. They spend a magical 24 hours together before he ships out, promising to write as soon as he can. Weeks pass, then months, but no letter. She now has a decision to make. Should she listen to her head and forget about him? Or should she follow her heart and find her handsome Brit?

One More Dance is described on the website as a story about a young woman in search of meaning in a troubled time. In her search, she finds love, laughter, danger, and despair; but most of all she finds herself, the website noted.

“I’ve had the idea for many, many years to really write a story about my parent’s romance,” he said. “My father was a British sailor, he was in the navy. He had met my mother during the Second World War. It’s an interesting story, by itself, I won’t get into it in too much detail but that’s what inspired me to look at writing the book.”

Forster said he always planned to write the book but kept putting it off. He said he kept writing over the years, as part of his consulting work, but never tackled fiction.

Finally in 2018, he started writing the book and took a leave from consulting.

“Fiction is a totally different ballgame from writing non-fiction,” he recalled. “So I kind of put it off, and put it off, and put it off. I got information from my parents about their past life in Halifax, and I had a lot of memorabilia and stuff like that. Then they passed away, my father passed away in 1998, my mother passed away in 2015. Ironically, I think it was my mother’s passing that kind of spurred me on to say, ‘I should’ve this while she was living,’ so I said, ‘I’m going to do it.”

Forster said it took him about nine months to research and finish a first draft. As more ideas came to him, he said the book started to take a life of its own.

“I changed the ending as I was writing. Originally I had a certain ending in mind. But as I was writing it, I thought, ‘this is going to be a better ending,’” he noted. “I added an awful lot of things that I didn’t have in my original outline.”

One More Dance is available via: https://newstreampublishing.com and while he did self-publish, Forster said he invested a lot of time and money. He used a professional designer for his cover, the inside of the book is professionally formatted, he hired a professional editor, and he asked someone to do a professional critique.

“This kind of thing is not a money-maker, it’s basically a work of passion,” he added of the self-published work. “This is a labour of love, this is not a business enterprise.”