Escape into a dragon's world.

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Author Bio:

Color head shot wearing brown cap, sunglasses, and wine colored sweater. The author is smiling. He has a white beard.

H. N. Henry—Author

This is the short version:

H. N. Henry (Huard, Norman Henry) holds two bachelor degrees from Laval University, one in English and history, the other in education. During his life he has been a former back-to-the-lander, a bee keeper, a tree farmer, a teacher, and he still has the gift to witch for water.

When a writer’s workshop student gave him a leather-bound notebook of blank pages and told him to start writing a story, he did. Thirteen notebooks and 1333 handwritten pages later he had what was to become the foundation of The Dragon’s Game books, a fantasy series with a kick-ass heroine.

Norm is a believer in “Think global. Act local.” Writing in Trois-Rivières, Quebec, Canada, he shares his profits with a local community cause, Point de Rue. They help homeless people find meaning and passion in their lives.

When not writing, Norm finds happiness whenever cycling around town or paddling or sailing his kayak on the Saint Lawrence River. Small is beautiful.

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Warning:This is the long get-to-know-me-as-a-person version:

Some say we’re shaped by the people we’ve lived with, the places we’ve lived in, and the things we’ve done. I guess that would count as getting a real-life education that leaves a mark on a person, but with no formal diploma to show for it, it doesn’t count as social proof to people who don’t know you. Well, I prefer to connect with people, not their diplomas.

In this somewhat chronologically cobbled-together bio, there’s a story behind each of the items that follow. If you ask me about one of them, I can tell you that story as best as I recall it.

A younger H. N. Henry with an untrimmed beard much longer, below-the-shoulders hair.

A Gandalf stand-in?

Some of what I did:

U.S.A. Life

Got lost in Davenport, Iowa. The police officer who found me gave me my first Hershey bar with almonds. Every time I bite into one I’m taken back to that moment at the police station.

Wrongfully accused of stealing a nickel, my kindergarten teacher spanked me in front of the class.

Sculpted an elephant out of modeling clay in grade 2. Teacher took me around to all the classes to show it before putting it in the school display case. Never saw it again.

Moved to Canada. Learned how to skate on an outdoor rink. A hockey puck took out my four lower front teeth.

New Brunswick Life

Hopped the train from Atholville to Campbellton to go to the movies with Lucien and the gang.

Picked and skinned a whole lot of hazelnuts; dried them in the sun; put them in clean, empty relish jars; and sold them along the highway.

Walked from Atholville to Camplbellton along the highway in a snowstorm to get to our new home.

Broke the law to get even with a mean grade 2 teacher.

When snaring rabbits with Dicky Martin, a bullet whizzed over our heads as we built our fire to cook lunch.

Held eels through their gills so the man living on the corner could skin them. Got paid a dime per eel.

Played lots of pick-up baseball. I was short stop.

Rode a bale of pine boughs down a snow covered trail on Mount Sugarloaf.

Walked out onto the pilings of the Cross Point Bridge as it was being built.

Got kicked out of the boy scouts for participating in shenanigans at the jamboree in Woodstock. You don’t want to know the dirty details.

Ate mustard sandwiches at the drive-in theatre with my friends.

Worked, unpaid, as the principal’s secretary and errand runner in Grade 7 at the King Street School.

Survived the car accident that killed my dad.

Moved from Campbellton, N.B. to Rawdon, Quebec.

Small Laurentian Village Life

Learned to ski at “The Beach” and at Mount Snow in Rawdon.

Made some great friends in our three-grade classroom/school. Hugs to Susan and Wade.

Delivered milk door to door in glass bottles.

Made about a thousand ice-cream cones at the dairy bar.

Worked a single, non-stop, 72 hour shift at a police station as a translator for Roy. Got paid as much as I would have been for slinging hamburgers and coffee at the bus station for the rest of the summer. Ask me about the rabid dog.

Worked at the liquor store selling booze over the counter and filling hotel orders. Ask me about Pete, the warlock.

Went to boarding school at Saint Lawrence College in Quebec City.

College Life

Played the character of Dr. Herman Einstein in the play Arsenic and Old Lace, a joint student production (SLC & Marymount College). It ran for two nights, once on a Friday for staff approval, and then to a sold-out gymnasium at Marymount on Saturday.

Shone the spotlight on Gordon Lightfoot when he played in the gym at SLC.

Worked on the SLC newspaper and yearbook, in the cafeteria, and supervised the library on week nights. Had the best roommate and friend anyone could ask for—Mark.

Was on the organizing committee of the Student Winter Carnival. Planned and organized a treasure hunt within the walls of Old Quebec with Claude. Turned the SLC gymnasium into a carnival ballroom.

Helped organize our grad ball at the Chateau Frontenac with George. We wore tuxedos and sneakers. We even had a suite at the Chateau for the after-ball party.

Got a B.A. (last class to graduate from Saint Lawrence College with a Laval University degree) and a B.Ed. (from Laval’s École Normale Laval de Mérici).

Became a Canadian citizen. If you ask about how the citizenship test went, I’ll tell the truth.

Work Life

Taught for 30+ years; ESL for 5 of those; grade 1 for 10 of those; high school for the last 16. Some of my grade 1 students had me again in high school. Poor them, lucky me. They were a great bunch of students. It was readers and writers workshop all over again.

Completely rebuilt a VW bus, except for the tranny and body.

Studied professional photography at nights.

Took farming related courses at MacDonald College at night. (I dare you to ask me about massaging cow ovaries.)

Discovered I can witch for water. Some of us have the gift. Many of us don’t.

Designed and made stained glass lamps.

Back-to-the-Land Life

Moved a 150 year-old house to a 65 acre piece of land. Witched its well. Painted its rusty tin roof red. Did all the plumbing, including installing the septic tank and leech field. Nailed the rough-cut, pine-board siding to the house, 12 inch boards on 4 inch battens.

Planted 13,000 Norwegian spruce trees by hand and another 49,000 with the help of a tractor.

Kept bees until I developed an allergy to their stings. Best honey I ever had.

Gardened vegetables. Plowed, tilled, and cultivated the soil with an Italian BSC Mainline walking tractor with an ACME AL290 motor. Yes, ACME really exists, not just in the cartoons.

Picked several hundred pounds of wild blueberries.

Split and stacked at least 180 cords of firewood.

That’s enough from the back-to-the-land-movement days. Seems to be comin’ around again.

On-the-Water Life

Crewed on Katsou, a 42 foot, cutter-rigged, French sailboat, belonging to the Groupe Internationale de Croisière des Glenans, to bring it from Charlottetown to Quebec City for the Quebec to Saint Malo Trans Atlantic Race in 1984.

Built a 17 foot sailboat from a kit. Sailed it on the Bras d’Or Lakes of Cape Breton, N.S. for 42 days (21 consecutive days, 2 summers in a row) and in the North Channel of Georgian Bay, Lake Ontario for 21 consecutive days.

Sold the country property and moved to town.

Writer’s Life

In 2004, I started to write what has become the foundation for my five-book fantasy series, The Dragon’s Game. Thanks Amanda.

A stack of twelve notebooks containing the H. N. Henry's original handwritten manuscript that became the foundation for The Dragon's Game books.

The Foundation of The Dragon’s Game Books

Book XIII, my Book of MS Notes, is not in this picture.

The twelve in this picture contain the full, first draft, handwritten manuscript, 1333 pages.

Retired from teaching.

Some of what I do:

Trying to Live the Simple Life

Write. There’s so much that goes on behind that single, five-letter word. You’ll not truly understand it until you try to write a novel.

Indie publish and market my books. So much to do. It’s a business.

Read.

Bake bread.

A batch of nine loaves of basic home-baked white bread sitting on the counter in rows of three. The loaf in the middle is piggy shaped, with raisin eyes.

Freshly Baked Bread With a Piggy in the Middle

Bicycle.

H. N. Henry is standing next to the bicycle he hacked to turn it into a six speed city cruiser. Specs: a CCM aluminium frame, mountain bike handlebars with reversed "tree grabbers" sporting handlebar grips, front-wheel fork shock absorbers, seat post shock absorber, Planet wheel fenders and mud guards, a kickstand, a saddle bag, and a Swagman fold-out basket for trips to the grocery store. In the background is the Saint Maurice River that runs into the Saint Lawrence River. The bridge spanning the river is the Radisson Bridge. It brings Autoroute 40 traffic across.

Next to My Ride Near the River

Paddle my kayak.

H. N. Henry, wearing neoprene paddling top,spray skirt, life jacket, cap, and sun glasses, is in his red 17 foot Kodiak Prijon sea kayak. The rudder is up and parked at the back. Spare paddles and a solid foam paddle float are on the deck behind him. On the bow of the kayak is white plastic paddle park and next to it is a red wind direction indicator made out a reused pen casing and a ribbon. His paddle is a Greenland style wooden paddle the author made from a 2 X 6 piece of spruce. The author chose this kayak because it carries a heavy load, is almost indestructible, and it is 99.98% recyclable.

The Joy of being on the Water

Sail my kayak. Small is beautiful.

The kayak's nose is resting on the beach of Isle Saint Quentin near mouth of the Saint Maurice River where it empties into the Saint Lawrence. A 24 square foot red and white sail with a lower transparent plastic section is stepped on the kayak forward of the cockpit near the front access hatch. Removable white inflatable outrigger spoons are attached behind the kayak cockpit. An old black plastic slip-on hockey-stick blade is being used as a lee board. The wooden paddle is resting in its park. In the distant background canoeists are paddling to the Saint Lawrence River.

Kayak With Sailing Rig

Play volleyball and drink beer, in that order.

H. N. Henry holding his Seagull Merlin. It's the M4 Mahogany model. From the Seagull website: Made in La Patrie Quebec, Canada and inspired by the dulcimer, the Seagull M4 is a very portable & compact 4-string diatonic acoustic instrument that is simply fun to play and very hard to put down! The M4 was designed to introduce & stimulate people of all ages (some of whom may not necessarily be players) to the joy of creating & playing music. Small in stature. Big in fun!

With My Merlin

Try to practice playing my guitar and my Merlin Seagull. Truly, small is beautiful.

Donate blood every three months or so.

Regularly donate to Point de Rue, a local charity dear to my heart. Those kids on the street all have a story, and right now they need all the help they can get. Think global. Act local.

Help friends who ask and offer help to those who don’t.

You probably noticed I’ve left out references to my family and my friends who people my life. They know I carry them close to my heart.

If you’ve read this far, you must be very curious, or maybe you just have time to waste. Whatever, thanks for reading. I hope you find as much pleasure in reading The Dragon’s Game books as I’ve had writing them. The verb tense of the last verb in the previous sentence is significant.