Things went quiet for a little while over here. I suppose that’s bound to happen in the midst of writing and completing an MFA degree. But there have been some new podcast guests in recent weeks, and their stories run the gamut: from death-defying alpine ascents, to MDMA-assisted psychotherapy, to Mennonite life in small-town British Columbia. Below, you’ll find the latest episodes of Story Untold — available on your podcast provider of choice. Hope you enjoy them as much I did in recording them.
Carla Funk: “Small towns do something to the imagination”
Carla Funk grew up in a place of logging trucks and God, pellet guns and parables. Part ode to childhood, part love letter to rural life, Every Little Scrap and Wonder offers an original take on the memories, stories, and traditions we all carry within ourselves, whether we planned to or not.
‘Tall Paul’ Marlow: “I don’t want to just go in 95 percent”
Paul Marlow is used to standing out. At 6’7″, the personal trainer and one-time Toronto Blue Jays draft pick — perhaps better known as ‘Tall Paul’ — is hard to miss. What’s new is his growing comfort in using that attention to connect with others about mental health. Having dealt with his father’s death, along with depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress, these days Marlow is most focused on sharing his story — the ups, downs, and in-betweens — in hopes that others will be more comfortable in sharing their own.
Greg Nolan: “I was looking for adventure”
At nineteen, on Greg Nolan’s first day as a treeplanter, he was given a target of 1,000 trees a day. He managed 93. Such was the start of a 27-year career in treeplanting, during which the Vancouver Island-based Nolan braved grizzly bear encounters, hurricanes, landslides, and life-threatening situations of nearly every conceivable kind.
Sharon Wood: “I did it for the sheer passion”
In 1986, Sharon Wood became the first woman from the Americas to summit Mount Everest–and the first woman in the world to do so via the West Ridge from Tibet and without Sherpa support. Her first full-length memoir, Rising (Douglas & McIntyre, October 2019), details the personal motivation that drove her to reach further and further heights: from gale-force Everest winds to midnight tent explosions and oxygen-starved plateaus.