Sue Williams’ formative years were living with her family above a bar in a nine-room century hotel in a small village on the Trans-Canada highway between North Bay and Sudbury.
Commercial Hotel – Circa 1912
Sue earned a degree in occupational therapy from Queen’s University. After working in a variety of rehabilitation settings she, out of necessity, grudgingly accepted a short-term job in home care and soon realized that was where she belonged.
Outside of her career in health care, Sue has had a life-long obsession with fibre-arts, particularly with creating new works out of old materials.
Appliqué of San Francisco by Sue Williams, 1992
She also reads, cooks, and dabbles in gardening.
Two things she had never imagined doing are; sailing an ocean and writing a book. But that all changed when, in her fifties, as a result of a ‘perfect storm’ of personal events, she arranged a temporary leave and circumnavigated the North Atlantic in a small boat with her husband. On her return, believing she had a story that needed telling, she set about learning how to tell it through books on writing, chats with writers, and taking creative writing courses from experts such as authors Barbara Kyle (The Traitor’s Daughter), Miriam Toews (Women Talking), and Adam Lindsay Honsinger (Somewhere North of Normal).
Sue is over the moon happy that her memoir, Ready to Come About, has found a home at the leading Canadian independent publishing house, Dundurn Press.
Sue is now working on a book based on her experiences in the largely invisible, often gut-wrenching, sometimes wacky world of home care. She might chronicle life in the New Commercial Hotel next. Who knows? But, what is certain is that she will keep on writing.
Her great-grandfather is the late Finnish author, Samuli Paulaharju, so she likes to think that this newly-discovered passion might be in her blood.
Sue is a mother and a grandmother. She lives with her husband in Guelph, Ontario.