POSTCARD: Joey Comeau
It’s hard to think of “American culture” as a concept. I mean, that seems like the biggest difference to me between us and them. We have “Canadian Culture” and they have cultures. When an American writer sets a book in New York City, they set the book there. In Canada, a writer will set a book in Toronto by describing every street, every neighbourhood, every restaurant by name. They seem afraid to simply have a book be set in a Canadian city - and I used to think this was a lame bravado thing, like “I’m a fancy Toronto writer, look how many street names I know.” but since moving to Toronto, and meeting a lot of writers, I think it’s more likely that Canadian writers are honestly not sure the reader will already know what Toronto is like. Americans don’t have that self-doubt. Their attitude is - Everybody knows what New York is like. And if you don’t? Fuck you. You probably can’t read anyway.