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The key to success

Will André Alexis’s new novel receive the same international accolades as his runaway hit Fifteen Dogs? Alexis, for one, isn’t concerned

COVER FEATURE

PHOTOGR APHY BY JAIME HOGGE

Early last year, André Alexis found himself behind on his taxes. So he dutifully gathered his receipts, bills, and other financial ephemera and sat down with his mother, someone “much better” at handling matters of money.

As she sifted through his records, she started to laugh. Confused and feeling less than frivolous, Alexis – in his mid-50s with nearly two decades of published work behind him – asked what was so funny. “She was laughing because I had made something like $5,000 that year,” he recalls. “She said, ‘How can an adult live on that little money?’ I realized I didn’t know. You get used to doing the work. I didn’t allow myself to think too much about how distressing it was to not have any money. But it was distressing.”

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About Quill & Quire

André Alexis, Defining success on his own terms; Writers' trust prize authors and editors on 20 years of award-winning books.