Pamela Callow – At Home Here in Nova Scotia

Occupation: Thriller Author

Place of Birth: Brampton, Ontario

Currently Resides: Halifax, Nova Scotia

Where’s your favourite place in Nova Scotia to grab a coffee?

I’m a creature of habit, so when I grab my laptop to get some writing done outside of the house, I go to places where I know I can park without trouble, get a good cup of coffee, and work without interruption. DAMAGED, the first book of my thriller series, was written in Starbucks on Lacewood Drive in Halifax. When I get a craving for a good muffin, I head to Local Jo’s on Oxford Street.

Where’s your favourite place in Nova Scotia to grab a pint?

As a Bluenoser, I hate to admit I’m not a beer drinker, but I do enjoy the pub scene. I love The Port in Wolfville – their potato skins are to die for. The Henry House has this stone wall which gives great ambience in the winter time. In the summer, I enjoy going down to the waterfront and eating on one of the outside decks. And when I’m in the mood for a little urban cocktail, The Onyx has the best mojitos.

Where’s your favourite place to shop in Nova Scotia?

Okay, I confess. I love to shop. One of my favourite clothing stores is Biscuit on Argyle Street. I love their modern-vintage vibe. I usually find something there that ends up being one of my favourite pieces. And the staff is great.  For work clothes staples, I rely on Banana Republic.  I have problem feet, so finding stylish shoes is always a challenge. I recently have had success at John David Shoes, Geox and the Mahone Bay Outfitters at the Historic Properties.  And one day, I’d like to re-decorate my house with the interior design aesthetic at Attica, Thornbloom, and Backyard & Veranda.

Where in Nova Scotia would we stand to see your favourite view?

Oh, that’s a tough one. There are so many! Here are a couple that spring to mind: the view of the Halifax Harbour from the penthouse suite of Purdy’s Wharf -  I used to work on that floor as a strategy consultant, and I was always entranced by the morning sun flashing silver on the deep blue of the harbour.  The view of Bear River by Digby seems so untouched by time. I find myself envisioning 16th century Mi’kmaq paddling in their bark canoes along the river…

Name 3 things we’ve gotta do when we visit Nova Scotia:

1. Go whale watching in Lunenburg. The boat tours not only take you to whale feeding areas, but you also get to see the Ovens and a shoal where seals hang out.

2. Go hiking in Prospect. My second book, INDEFENSIBLE, has a number of scenes in Prospect. When you climb those granite cliffs that had been carved by icebergs thousands of years ago, you get the sense of how terrible and fierce is the beauty of our province.  I have a huge respect for the communities that make their living from the ocean.

3. Visit the Tangled Gardens in Wolfville. I love gardens, and this one is special because it plays homage to historic garden design yet is infused with whimsy and a creative joy. There is a wildflower labyrinth overlooking the water that is reminiscent of a Regency house party and yet also has the feel of the ancients. I love to wander around the medieval-style herb knot garden, the fragrance of lavender and sage on the breeze, surrounded by the low thrum of bees. We finish our visit by stocking up on their incredible jams and jellies.

What makes Nova Scotia such a special place on earth for you?

The ocean is in my blood. I can’t leave it. I lived briefly on the West Coast before going to law school, and as much as I enjoy the vibe of Vancouver, I don’t like the feeling of being enclosed by mountains.

As a family, we enjoy hiking and camping. There are so many places to explore here, so many different aspects of natural beauty. It only takes minutes to leave the city behind. Which is great, because as much as I love being outdoors, I’m also a city girl at heart. Shopping, eating out, going to movies or the symphony or the theatre – enjoy doing them all.

And I love the unpredictability of our weather. You have to admit, it’s a great conversation starter!

It has been a great place to set my thriller series.

Visit Pam’s website to learn more about her Nova Scotian-set thriller series:

She also hangs out on Facebook and on Twitter: @PamelaCallow

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