Harry Thurston - Biography

Born in 1950 in Yarmouth, Nova Scotia, Harry Thurston has lived most of his life in the province of his birth. However, as an essayist, editor and freelance journalist, Thurston has traveled the globe, writing articles for more than thirty publications, including National Geographic, Audubon, and Harrowsmith. The majority of his non-fiction work deals with matters of the environment and natural history and he has an educational background that reflects this fact as he graduated in 1971 with a B.Sc. in Biology from Acadia University. Some of the highlights of Thurston’s career as a naturalist include being awarded the 1983 National Magazine Award for Science & Technology and the 1986 and 1987 Canadian Science Writer’s Association’s Science & Society Award. More recently, Thurston’s A Place Between the Tides: A Naturalist’s Reflections on the Salt Marsh (2005) was shortlisted for the Drainie-Taylor Biography Prize, the B.C. Award for Canadian Non-fiction, the City of Dartmouth Book Award and won the Sigurd Olson Nature Writing Award. In addition to publishing books and articles on nature, Thurston served as a contributing editor to Equinox magazine since it began in 1981. Thurston’s career as a naturalist and journalist, however, is only half the story. In addition to his journalistic endeavors, Thurston has published widely as a poet. His first collection, Barefaced Stone, was published in 1980 by Fiddlehead Poetry Books. Before the release of this collection, however, Thurston established himself on the Atlantic-Canadian literary scene as the editor and publisher of the literary journal Germination. Since Barefaced Stone, Thurston has published a number of other collections of poetry, including A Ship Portrait (2005), which details the life and times of John O’Brien, a nineteenth-century Nova Scotian painter of ships. He has also edited The Sea’s Voice: An Anthology of Atlantic Canadian Nature Writing (2005).