Red Deer born-and-raised author Lise Guyanne Pomerleau is returning to home turf to promote her first book, Becoming Sand.
It’s the first stop on her provincewide book tour.
“It’s an Alberta story with an Alberta family, based on fact but it is fictionalized and I think many people of a variety of backgrounds will be interested in this book and the people that came from Eastern Canada to become pioneers in the West,” Pomerleau, 57, said.
Pomerleau will be at Sunworks in downtown Red Deer on Saturday from 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. to meet the public and sign copies of her book, which was published in December 2012.
She’s sold over 400 copies to date and said Red Deer has been “very supportive” of her work, making it the perfect location to launch her tour.
After 32 years in the education sector, Pomerleau, who was one of the first French immersion teachers in Red Deer at Grandview Elementary, made the jump into creative writing, a longtime dream.
She had been researching and working on Becoming Sand for the past three decades and after retiring, she finally had time to put it all together.
The novel begins in Quebec in the 1600s and traces one family’s lineage to Alberta in the 1960s where heritage and culture begin to crumble.
The story is close to the author’s heart. Her own father’s family was French-Canadian, from the Beauce region of Quebec, and journeyed to Alberta to start a new life.
“My grandmothers on both sides always told us stories and I was really inspired by them and interested in the past and what had happened to people, and how they had arrived to the place they were at,” Pomerleau said.
She is working on her second novel, which will follow a family in Saskatchewan struggling through the Great Depression.
Like her first book, it too is influenced by her own history as her mother’s family, of Scottish and Manx descent, were pioneers in the Prairies in the early 1900s.
Pomerleau now lives in Nanton, south of High River, with her husband, Jeremy Mayne, an artist who was also born and raised in Red Deer.
She planned to start her book tour last summer but had to reschedule due to the serve flooding that forced her relocation.
Pomerleau’s next stop is Edmonton, followed by several throughout Southern Alberta.
Becoming Sand is available at Sunworks and Chapters in Red Deer as well as numerous other book stores in Calgary. For more information, visit www.lgpomerleau.com.