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J.R. Patterson was born in Manitoba in 1989 and raised on a beef and grain farm on the Canadian prairies. His experiences as a farm labourer, factory worker, and musician inform much of his writing. 

His work has been longlisted for the CBC Short Story Prize, shortlisted for the Geist Postcard Contest, and received Honorable Mention in the 2019 Bradt Emerging Travel Writers Competition.

When not writing, he enjoys flying single-engine planes, paddling his folding kayak, and drinking wine.

Together with his partner Francisca, he divides his time between Canada, Scotland, and Portugal.