Trillium Book Awards Author Reading 2015

The Dirty Dozen, with Liz Worth

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Liz Worth

Liz Worth is the author of PostApoc (Now or Never Publishing) as well as her cult hit, Treat Me Like Dirt: An Oral History of Punk in Toronto and Beyond, a collection of poetry and several chapbooks.

PostApoc follows Ang, who survives a suicide pact only to fall into an underground music scene obsessed with the idea of the end of the world. The surprise comes when the end actually arrives — and rather than the liberating oblivion Ang and her friends expected, they find themselves hungry, disoriented and struggling to survive.

Today we welcome Liz as she takes on the Open Book Dirty Dozen, an unconventional interview series that asks authors to share twelve unexpected facts about themselves.

  1. As a morning person, it’s not always easy for me to write at night, but life sometimes demands it be that way. My trick to plowing through is to eat peanut butter and Nutella straight out of the jar, together. I like to think it makes me smarter, if not at least happier.
  2. The first award I ever won was for a Grade 4 speech I wrote in French, told from the perspective of a cat. I presented it wearing a cat mask.
  3. I really liked cats.

  4. The second award I ever won was in Grade 5. I entered a Father’s Day contest at the mall where you were given a blank cardboard tie to decorate however you wanted. I stuck a bunch of candy, sequins, and comic strips on there, as well as a homemade finger puppet I’d glued together out of felt.
  5. I came in first place and got a $100 shopping spree out of it. I don’t know what was in it for my dad aside from a very unwearable tie.

  6. I had two imaginary friends growing up. First there was Janet, who I imagined was a shy, quiet girl with glasses who wore these really terrible high-waisted jeans. Janet liked reading and was even less popular than I was.
  7. My second imaginary friend was a tiger. He came along in Grade 3 or 4. I was a loner for much of my childhood and when we’d go on field trips at school I liked to imagine he was walking beside me because a lot of the times no one else was.

  8. I should probably never admit this but I have a terrible baby talk habit. I never grew out of it and one day I realized my parents had not only picked up all my baby talk words but had also started making up their own. To this day my mom doesn’t ask for a hug, she asks for “huggies.”
  9. I can’t look at an animal without my mouth turning to goo and often can’t look at an adult without the same thing happening. My boyfriend constantly asks me to “stop being a baby” but he’ll just have to learn to live with it because I actually don’t know if I can change at this point. Or if I really want to.

  10. Fox Mulder is my secret boyfriend. He doesn’t mind my baby talk one bit.
  11. When I like something, I really like it, and as a result end up listening to the same albums over and over, or watching the same TV shows or movies again and again, and eating the same foods every day for years and years.
  12. One of my biggest obsessions that first brought this out was S.E. Hinton’s The Outsiders. I was so in love with that book the first year I read it and would start it all over again as soon as I got to the end.

    I also watched The Breakfast Club at least once a day, every day, for the whole summer of 1997. In 1999, I watched Pretty in Pink every Saturday night for the whole winter.

    As I write this, I am on a months-long stretch of listening to Talk Talk’s It’s My Life from start to finish at least three times a week.

  13. I started working when I was 11, delivering newspapers. I wanted a pair of Doc Martens and my parents told me I’d need to save up for them. I think I got something like six cents a paper so it took me a very long time to save up, but I did get eventually there.
  14. I have been working ever since.

  15. I have mild tinnitus which developed when I was around nine years old. I hear a high-pitch frequency at all times.
  16. I have never lived anywhere but Toronto, but I almost moved to Australia in 2002. I went through all the paperwork for my work VISA and had the money for my plane ticket, and then I met someone and everything changed and I decided to stay here.
  17. Even though that someone didn’t end up being in my life as long as I had expected, I realize now that I was never meant to leave this city, at least not then. I don’t know that I would be sitting here doing this interview if I had because when I look back I see how every part of my past connects with every part of my present.

  18. The first band I ever really loved was the Beach Boys. They have a permanent place in my Top 10 list.
  19. The things that scare me most are elevators, fire and centipedes. I take the stairs whenever it’s an option; check, check and re-check that nothing is burning at home; and melt into a puddle whenever a centipede is near.


Liz Worth is an author and performance poet whose book, Treat Me Like Dirt: An Oral History of Punk in Toronto and Beyond was the first to give an in-depth account of Toronto’s early punk scene. Liz has also written a poetry collection, Amphetamine Heart and three chapbooks. She currently resides in Toronto.

For more information about PostApoc please visit the Now or Never Publishing website.

Buy this book at your local independent bookstore or online at Chapters/Indigo or Amazon.

Check out all the Dirty Dozen interviews in our archives.

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