Layover: and Other Stories of Delayed Travelers by Elliot Chan

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Cover Layover and other

Book Description:

Following the journeys of desperate lovers, lonesome pilgrims, borderline criminals, stranded space travelers, and lamentable individuals held up in a place far from home, Layover: and Other Stories of Delayed Travelers introduces an array of characters adrift in a purgatorial state, halfway from failure and too far from contentment. Elliot Chan’s first collection of short stories explores the traveling sensations often omitted from our memories; the missing photographs in our recollection and the time lost in between destinations.

 

Origin of the collection:

Much like writing, traveling to me is a love-hate relationship. On one hand, I can not live without it, and on the other, it is killing me slowly. How many hours have I spent waiting for the next bus, next train, next plane, next taxi, and next trip? How many hours have I spent fine-tuning these stories you are about to read? What did I really get out of these two time-consuming hobbies? What was my return on investment?

I wrote Layover, the title story, upon returning home from a trip to South East Asia in 2011. It was meant to be a companion piece to my novella Ben but stand on its own in a literary sense. My writing at that time was crazed. I worked like a man trying to pen down all his treasured memories before he lost his mind. I could have written a journal, but I didn’t, I chose the medium of short stories because I wanted to be published. I thought my fantastic tales of vacation were worthy. They were not.

Like traveling, writing is full of disappointments, delays, and disenchantments. They’re both escapes, but one is significantly cheaper than the other. By writing about traveling, I was able to assess my mistakes on the road and perhaps learn from it. But most importantly, the practice scratched an itch and saved a few bucks.

I would like to claim that my finest works are locked within this collection, but that is not true. If you wish to continue, you’ll be reading the words of a boy without a clear direction. Each piece was meant for something entirely different. Some trailed off, some ended abruptly, some were meditative, some wound up in an unpredictable place, some didn’t even go anywhere at all. I’m proud of what I’ve done here not because of any grand success, but because it liberated me. There is something divine about pairing writing with traveling. This is unlike a photo album, this is my album of words, the best kind of souvenir, in my opinion.

Many of us dream of a once-in-a-lifetime trip, but most of us fail to pursue it. Many of us want to write a best-selling novel and fail to do that as well. I don’t expect Layover: And Other Stories of Delayed Travelers to blow you away, but maybe it’ll inspire you to turn your mere insignificant trips into memories, memories through fiction. That to me is meaningful enough.

Elliot Chan

August 1, 2015

Layover: and Other Stories of Delayed Travelers is available on Amazon.

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Time Traveller Magazine

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It’s time to get away!

In a fantastical world where time travel is a reality, Time Traveller Magazine is the go-to source for the best non-linear time travelling and vacationing content.


The Time Traveller Magazine was conceived as a school project for my professional writing program at Douglas College in 2013. It was arguably the assignment I was most passionate about. Time Traveller Magazine offered me an opportunity to stretch my imagination and experiment with publishing and design tasks that I would have otherwise removed myself from in normal settings. Coming from a hands-on filmmaking background, working on this magazine brought me back to my hankering for visual editing. I worried less about vocabulary, grammar, and sentence structures and focused more on the layout, the images, and the storytelling techniques that didn’t involve words necessarily. It was a rewarding experience and I am happy to share it with you all today.

Click Here to View the Time Traveller Magazine!

– Elliot Chan

Ben by Elliot Chan

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Cover Ben1

Book Description:

A sheltered young man sets off on a trip to South East Asia in an effort to escape his business-oriented father and his pretentious North American lifestyle. The hot sun, the bug bites, and a man who calls himself Ben lead him through the lust, ecstasy, and agony of a life too far from home.

 

Origin of the book:

In 2011, I drained most of my savings into a five-week-long backpacking trip to South East Asia with my friends, Antoine and Michael. It was my first real experience traveling outside of North America, and needless to say, I was anxious and over-the-top excited. I even purchased a camera to documented my trip in a “travel show” style I’ve grown to adore. Sadly due to my sprained knee, gum infection, and acute case of homesickness, I only managed to film the first three weeks of my trip. I entitled the series The Chronicles of Elliot Chan.

Here is the first episode:

Here we encounter a landslide:

And here we visit an elementary school in Bayombong, Philippines:

The trip was exactly what the 22-year-old me needed. I learned more about myself in those five weeks than I did in my five years of high school. Sparked with new inspiration, I wrote Ben, a novella about a boy who finds himself alone in a foreign country, clinging onto a friendship as strange as the culture and landscape. Far from autobiographical, the novella was an exploration to seek out all the things I hated while traveling. It’s hard to confront the same challenges back home, and I miss those minor/major inconveniences of living in a place where I was ignorant to the directions and languages. My trip was hard, and I regret giving up when I really could have kept on going. This story was my way of facing my disappointments head-on.

Ben is available for purchase on Amazon. 

 

The Adventures of ROFL Cat: A Tale of Internet Slang

In late 2013, I had an opportunity to work with Jeff Allen, Dana Renaud and Maggie Clark, as well as the talented Cody Klyne, in bringing to life an idea I had stowed away in my head for many years. For that I say, thank you.

rofl

When you produce content regularly, not every piece of work stands out. Time passes and some fade away without any recollection—in fact, sometimes I don’t remember writing a piece at all when I reread it over the course of a couple months. I don’t think I’ll have to worry about forgetting ROFL Cat anytime soon… it is a project I can genuinely say I’m proud of. Not just because it was an idea that sat passively and patiently with me for so long (ideas are known to vanish before I get a chance to write it down), but also because those that contributed to the book did such an amazing job. I’m sure my pride for it is justified.

If you have not seen the works of Avery Monsen and Jory John, search them up. They are authors of the hilarious illustrated series All Your Friends Are Dead and K Is For Knifeball: An Alphabet of Terrible Advice. Those hardcover children’s book with adult humour was what I wanted ROFL Cat to be like: funny, in an adorable and rude kind of way.

Since the book is produced as a part of my professional writing program at Douglas College, we were offered limited printing. I would love for everyone to have a copy of ROFL Cat on the coffee table and bookshelf, but that simply doesn’t seem possible at the moment, as the demand is quite low—that being said, I still want to share it.

Here is the product of a bunch of talented people working together on one of my silly ideas:

ROFL

The Adventures of ROFL Cat: A Tale of Internet Slangs

 

– Elliot Chan, April 21, 2014

The Past in Between by Elliot Chan

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pastinbetweentitle2

Book description:

Some people get second chances, but Constable Seth Southgate and Van Vuong are much luckier, they’ve got many more—unfortunately chances aren’t privileges, they aren’t measurable, and they aren’t always acknowledged. From a hospital bed and a prison cell, the two men face the repercussions of their choices, recall the chances they received, and wonder when the trigger was pulled and their fortunes faded.

Origin of the book:

In 2010, I didn’t have much going on. I bounced around different jobs, while still trying to hang on to some hope of becoming an actor/director. As I waited for Hollywood to call, I did a lot of writing and developed a love for it—a love that didn’t leave me feeling jilted, unlike my love for film. I entered the 3-Day Writing Contest to motivate myself to write something, just to get it done from beginning to end. Well, I did it—and I left it on the shelf for 3 years. Why I abandoned it for so long, I don’t know, but I do know that I don’t believe in building a boat and never sailing it. So here it is now: The Past in Between is a novel about second chances… which is fitting, because I gave it a second chance to be read, just like how writing offered me a second chance to create artistically, in addition to making a living and pursuing a passion. It really is nice looking back sometimes and seeing where I’ve come from. This book allowed me to do that. Now let’s look forward.

The Past in Between is available on Amazon for ebook.