Nowlan was born near Windsor, Nova Scotia, on January 25, 1933.
He died in Fredericton, NB, on June 27, 1983. He left school early
and during his adolescent years worked at a variety of jobs, all
of them menial, manual, or both. He was a pulp cutter, a farmhand,
a sawmill worker, a night watchman, a ditch digger and a logger.
16, 1952, he arrived in Hartland, New Brunswick, where (on the strength
of a letter of reference he had written himself) he obtained a job
with The Observer, the local weekly newspaper. During his years
as a reporter (and later news editor) with The Observer, he moonlighted
as manager of a country-western band, a credit investigator, a poll
taker, a broadcaster and (once only) as a boxing promoter. He also
wrote for agricultural magazines and served for two years as secretary
of the New Brunswick Fish and Game Protective Association.
28, 1963, he joined the staff of the Telegraph-Journal, Saint John,
N.B., as a reporter, later becoming, in turn, Provincial Editor
and Night News Editor. In 1966, he underwent three major surgical
he was appointed writer-in-residence at the University of New Brunswick,
Fredericton, N.B. In 1972 he became an Honorary Research Associate
in the UNB School of Graduate Studies.
him an honorary degree of Doctor of Letters in 1971 and in 1976
he was awarded an honorary degree of Doctor of Laws by Dalhousie
University, Halifax, N.S.
has received the following awards:
Award for Poetry, 1967.
Council Special Award, 1968.
Medal of the University of Western Ontario for short fiction,
1970 and again in 1972.
Silver Jubilee Medal, 1978.
Author's Association Silver Medal for Poetry, 1977.
Richardson Award for Non-fiction, 1979.
ACTRA Award for Non-fiction, 1979.
Magazine Association Gold Medal for Best Travel Article, 1980.
founding member of the Writers' Union of Canada
founding member of the League of Canadian Poets
founding member of the Committee for an Independant Canada
as a member of the Editorial Board of the University of Ottawa
Short Stories Series.
member of the jury charged with selecting the winner of the Governor-General's
Award for Poetry for three years.
of the Advisory Committee to the New Brunswick Provincial Minister
of Youth, Culture and Recreation.
the former Claudine Orser and one son John survive him.
Courtesy of Kent Nason