Douglas Coupland to publish new novella, ‘Temp,’ in Metro series

Douglas Coupland
Author Douglas Coupland has a new novella out, “Temp,” about the difficulties faced by the current crop of new workers. Credit: Getty

Metro is pleased to announce an exclusive collaboration with celebrated author Douglas Coupland.

His novella, “Temp,” will be running online and in the pages of your daily Metro each weekday from Nov. 4-29. Charlotte Empey, editor-in-chief of Metro Canada, arranged the collaboration, saying that the novella “explores what it means to be young, smart and only temporarily employed, through the eyes of a contemporary cast of characters just trying to carve a place for themselves in an uncertain world.”

When we reached out to the famed Vancouver-based novelist about why he chose Metro to publish his work, he said, “Metro is the tom-toms of the global village. It’s the new face of old media. It reaches millions of people who devour every word and it all ends up being discussed in lunchrooms, meeting rooms and dinner tables around the world.” 

Below, please read Coupland’s letter to readers about “Temp” and his collaboration with your favorite daily newspaper.

In the next four weeks you’ll be reading the daily story of a very likeable character named Shannon. You already know Shannon — everyone knows Shannon; you may well be Shannon. She’s that slightly geeky gal who temps at every office you’ve ever worked at. She’s funny, she’s got her head screwed on right, and most of all, Shannon lives in our collective real world. She lives in the year 2013 and Shannon’s world is changing and mutating as rapidly as yours.

Change: that dreaded word. If only we could have a one-year holiday from change — but that’s not going to happen and we all know it. So then, how do we make the most of life as it’s really lived? How do we cope and find the good stuff amidst the bad stuff? That’s what Shannon’s all about.

But wait. Why Metro? And why me writing about a character named Shannon in Metro? Two reasons. One, I always set my books in what I call ‘the extreme present tense.’ As living creatures, the present moment is all we have. It truly is… it’s freaky and messy and weird, but it’s ours and soon enough the present tense will become the Good Old Days — so enjoy it.

Two, I’m no longer sure if fiction is keeping pace with life and how we live it. I’m a born experimenter and I want to try something new to address this lack. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: As a species we’ve never been smarter, yet we’ve never felt stupider. We live in a world of devices and clouds and economic bubbles. A traditional novel will always be central to human civilization, but I get the impression a new form of storytelling is being called for. I call it dépêche fiction: fast-changing fiction. (Yes, kind of like Dépêche Mode, a band I totally like.) Dépêche fiction is a cappuccino hit. Dépêche fiction is a really awesome Russian dash cam clip. Dépêche fiction is written so that it accumulates in your brain over time, and then, just like alien eggs, it suddenly hatches and makes your brain say, ‘Hey! I’m feeling something tingly and new! And BTW, I’ve overtaken your existence!’

What to expect? Well, it’s not ‘The Office,’ and it’s not a comic strip. ‘Temp’ is something new — and you get to be a part of the experiment. And Metro is the perfect slot for ‘Temp.’ Metro is read by people who are out there in the world living a full-on modern experience. Fiction is about readers being able to say, ‘Wait — that’s how I see the world!’ And I hope that’s what you feel. And now let the eggs hatch.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Woman dies when run over by bus at…

A woman at the Burning Man arts and culture festival in the Nevada desert died on Thursday when she was run over by a bus carrying participants.

National

Texas parents sue day care center for duct…

By Marice RichterDALLAS (Reuters) - A Texas couple has filed a lawsuit against the owners of a Fort Worth-area day care center seeking $1 million…

National

Santa Fe city council votes to decriminalize marijuana

By Joseph KolbALBUQUERQUE N.M. (Reuters) - Santa Fe on Wednesday became the latest U.S. city to decriminalize small amounts of marijuana, with lawmakers in the…

International

Egypt queries Mursi over documents "leaked" to Al…

CAIRO (Reuters) - Egypt is investigating jailed ex-president Mohamed Mursi in connection with documents that judicial investigators say were leaked to the Qatar-based Al Jazeera…

Movies

Interview: 'As Above, So Below' directors: 5 ways…

The fraternal directors of the found footage horror "As Above, So Below" dish on the best ways to frighten the bejesus out of audiences.

Movies

Criterion's new Jacques Demy box mixes the light…

Jacques Demy, the most effervescent of French New Wave filmmakers, gets a Criterion box all to himself, with classics like "The Umbrellas of Cherbourg."

Entertainment

Comedian Joan Rivers, 81, rushed to New York…

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Acerbic comedian and fashion critic Joan Rivers was rushed to Mount Sinai Hospital in New York on Thursday after she reportedly…

The Word

The Word: Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie finally…

Well, everybody, it finally happened. Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie went and got themselves hitched — according to noted scandal sheet the Associated Press —…

NFL

NFL Power Rankings: Seahawks, Broncos, Patriots, 49ers start…

NFL Power Rankings: Seahawks, Broncos, Patriots start at top

U.S. Soccer

5 facts about new England captain Wayne Rooney

Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney was named as the new England captain by coach Roy Hodgson on Thursday.

NFL

Jets vs. Eagles: 3 things to watch

A win on Thursday night at the Eagles would give the Jets a 3-1 record and just their second winning preseason under head coach Rex Ryan.

NFL

Giants vs. Patriots: 3 things to watch

The Giants wrap up their extended preseason campaign Thursday night by playing host to the Patriots.

Style

Trend: White hot on the 2014 Emmy's red…

White was one of the big trends on the Emmy's red carpet.

Food

Recipe: Samuel Adams beer-marinated grilled shrimp

Summer calls for two things: a cold beer and light food. Sam Adams' Latitude 48 IPA fairly bursts with citrus notes, making it an ideal marinade…

Wellbeing

4 healthy ingredient swaps to make your meals…

When it comes to eating well, everyone knows they could be doing better. But cooking in an apartment on a busy schedule is a recipe…

Wellbeing

Heart trumps brain when it comes to movies…

When you need a good cry, do you reach for the movie that’s “based on a true story”? Science says you’re giving your brain far…