Read below to see who our headlining authors have been so far this year.
July 11, 2019
Valentina Gal is the blind daughter of Ukrainian immigrants who settled in Hamilton Ontario after WWII. While at McMaster University, she discovered that her city was diverse and peopled by colourful characters. Her writing and storytelling explore both her mother’s tragic history and her family’s adventures in becoming first generation Canadians.
Lee Maracle is a storyteller, poet, thinker, and, over the last four decades, has become one of the most prolific and respected Indigenous writers in Canada. Maracle’s writings shed light on the injustices faced by Indigenous people, especially women, using her remarkable ability to tell “the old stories” of her Sto:lo people in a contemporary context. She is the author of seven books of fiction, three works of nonfiction, two collections of poetry, numerous essays, and a contributor to many anthologies. Her latest book, My Conversations with Canadians, is a collection of forthright essays in which she answers some of the “big” questions she’s been asked over the years at public events, tackling issues of identity, racism, and sexism. In Maracle’s trademark honest, thoughtful, and conversational tone, she explores ways we can work together to reimagine a different future for our nation. Lee Maracle will be delivering this year’s Bruce Hutchinson Memorial Lecture.
June 13, 2019
Michael Fraser has been published in numerous national and international anthologies and journals, including Paris/Atlantic, Arc Poetry Magazine, Contemporary Verse 2, and The Caribbean Writer. He was published in Best Canadian Poetry in English in 2013 and 2018. He has won numerous awards, including Freefall Magazine’s 2014 and 2015 poetry contests, the 2016 CBC Poetry Prize, and the 2018 Gwendolyn MacEwen Poetry Competition.
David Rankine Over the past 35 years, David Rankine has used his art, music and writing to explore the nature of creativity and its place in healing and in the development of consciousness. He has recorded 10 CDs of original music and written numerous articles on Sacred Art, Mandalas, Celtic Art and Healing. Teaching workshops for all age levels, David has also lectured on Medieval sacred art and Mandalas and his work with mandalas as a healing tool has been recognized in a number of publications. 2019 marks his entry into the world of fiction writing with a collection of stories based on his dreams, titled the Warrior’s Tale (pub. One Thousand Trees). Some of these stories have been performed live at various events and festivals over the years. He lives and works in rural Huron County, Ontario.
May 9, 2019
Doyali Islam’s second poetry book is heft (McClelland & Stewart, 2019). Poems from this collection have been published in Kenyon Review Online, The Fiddlehead, and Best Canadian Poetry. In 2017, Doyali was a National Magazine Award finalist and a guest on CBC Radio’s The Sunday Edition. She serves as the poetry editor for Arc Poetry Magazine and lives in Toronto.
Originally from Six Nations of the Grand River Territory in Southern Ontario, Linda McGregor is the Manager of Indigenous Education, an award-winning program with the Simcoe Muskoka Catholic District School Board. A former student of best-selling author and Professor, Dr. Bruce Meyer, Linda was invited to write a manuscript for a publisher she called Secrets of a Native Mind. Linda will be reading an excerpt from this manuscript and a poem she wrote called Creator of All People – that the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada described as “how easy it is to start” the process of reconciliation.
April 11, 2019
She is, at the moment, writing the sequel to Trouble and Strife titled In The Pink where she reveals the Second World War from the point of view of a family living in Toronto.
Her novels are based on true events from a Torontonian perspective.
Wendy Ranby is a teacher with over 25 years of experience teaching “literally every grade”. She currently teaches grade 8 and is inspired every day by the life force of adolescents. She recently received her Masters of Education degree in Counselling Psychology from the University of Toronto and has also taken Creative Writing courses from U of T. Wendy enjoys travelling, rooting for the Blue Jays, working out with her golden retriever, and family time with her husband and three grown children. Under the Floorboard is her debut novel, but she has kept a journal since she was a young child. She was born and raised in Rothesay, New Brunswick and now lives in Tottenham, Ontario.
Under the Floorboard – 15-year-old Aileen never feels good enough to please her mother. When she pries up the floorboard at her aunt’s house, she sheds a light on the dark secret she worked so hard to forget. Why does no one ever talk about her baby sister Claire and what happened to her?
When her mother announces she’s pregnant and starts acting strange. After the baby is born, her mother descends into a depression, and Aileen has to cope with the effect this has on both her and her family. Life isn’t easy when your parent has a mental health issue. Especially when no one talks to you about it. Honesty is tough. Does her mother have secrets of her own and is Aileen ready for the truth? Miscommunications abound, but underneath there is love—even if it is hard to feel it sometimes.
Word Up Thursday March 14, 2019
John Miller’s third novel, Wild and Beautiful is the Night, (Cormorant: October 2018) is the story of an unusual friendship between two women struggling to find their way in Toronto’s sex trade. The Featherbed (Dundurn, 2002) received stellar reviews and earned a devoted readership upon its release and A Sharp Intake of Breath (Dundurn, 2007) won the Beatrice and Martin Fischer Award in Fiction for 2008.
John grew up in Toronto and holds a B.A. from McGill University and an M.A. in International Development from the Institute of Social Studies in The Hague. In addition to writing, he is an organizational development consultant with non-profits.
In 2005 John B. Lee was inducted as Poet Laureate of Brantford and in 2015 he was appointed Honourary Poet Laureate of Norfolk County. A recipient of over eighty prestigious international awards for his writing, he has well-over seventy books published to date and is the editor of nine anthologies. Called “the greatest living poet in English,” by poet George Whipple, he lives in Port Dover, Ontario where he works as a full time author.
Word Up Thursday February 14, 2019
Bruce Meyer is author or editor of 63 books of poetry, short fiction, non-fiction, literary journalism, anthologies, reference books, memoirs, portrait photographs, and textbooks. He was the inaugural Poet Laureate of the City of Barrie from 2010 to 2014. He recently won The Woolf Poetry Prize in Zurich, Switzerland, and was shortlisted for both the Gwendolyn MacEwen Prize (which he won twice — 2015, 2016) and the Carter V. Cooper Prize. He has had three national bestsellers: The Golden Thread (2000), We Wasn’t Pals: Cnaadian Poetry and Prose of the First World War (2000) and Portraits of Canadian Writers (2016). He lives in Barrie where he teaches Creative Writing, Composition and Canadian Literature at Georgian College and at Victoria College in the University of Toronto where he teaches Poetry, Non-fiction, and Comparative Literature in the Vic One Program. His most recent books are The First Taste: New and Selected Poems (2018), a selection of forty years of his poetry, and A Feast of Brief Hopes (2018), a collection of short stories. Over the next eighteen months McLuhan’s Canary (poetry), Down in the Ground (flash fiction), and a Bruce Meyer: Canadian Writer (a study of his works) will appear from Guernica Editions.
Keith Garebian holds a Doctorate in Canadian and Commonwealth Literature from Queen’s University. He is the author of seven poetry collections, with an eighth due to be published next September by Frontenac as part of its Quartet 2019. He was shortlisted for the 2014 Freefall Poetry Award, the 2015 GritLit Poetry Award, and the 2015 Gwendolyn MacEwen-Exile Poetry Award for the Best Single Poem from a suite. In 2013, he was a judge for the Gerald Lampert Poetry Award. One of his poems from his collection Blue: The Derek Jarman Poems has been set to music for choir and instruments by American composer Gregory Spears, and Keith intends to be at the New York premiere in May 2019.
Keith Garebian appears as part of Canada Poetry Tours, supported by the League of Canadian Poets and Canada Council for the Arts. We acknowledge the support of the Canada Council for the Arts. Nous remercions le Conseil des arts du Canada de son soutien.
Word Up Thursday January 10, 2019
Heather Cadsby is the author of five books of poetry. The most recent book is titled Standing in the Flock of Connections (Brick Books, 2018). In the 1980s, she and Maria Jacobs founded Wolsak and Wynn Publishers. Since that time she has been involved with Phoenix: A Poet’s Workshop, The Axle Tree Coffee House readings, The Art Bar Poetry Series among other poetry related activities. She lives in Toronto. Heather appears as part of Canada Poetry Tours, supported by the League of Canadian Poets and Canada Council for the Arts. We acknowledge the support of the Canada Council for the Arts. Nous remercions le Conseil des arts du Canada de son soutien.
Jeanette Winsor writes fiction, non-fiction, and poetry. Her first novel Molly Chant is currently in submission. She has published journal articles with Green Teacher Magazine, The Catholic Digest, The Navigator, Homemakers Magazine, and DownHome Magazine. Her short stores can be found in Wayfaring: Journeys in Language, Learning and Culture, Unleashed Ink, The Canadian Authors Association CanWrite Collection, and The Antigonish Review. Her scholarly journal articles have been published internationally. Jeanette lives in Angus, ON. She is represented by Olga Filina of The Rights Factory.