Community Pop-Up: September 25, 2022

Evergreen Brick Works (550 Bayview Ave, Toronto)

2021 Festival Week

Celebrate the stories that connect us at Toronto’s friendly, virtual book festival. Tune in to The Word On The Street from September 16th to 26th, 2021 for poetry, memoirs, mystery, & more!

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Featured Books

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Speakers

NEW: Check out our How-to Guide for WOTS2021 to watch our video explainer

Festival Schedule

september, 2021

Event Location

Virtual Events

Authors & Panelists

  • A. J. Vrana

    A. J. Vrana is a Serbian-Canadian academic and writer from Toronto, Canada. Her published works include The Chaos Cycle Duology: The Hollow Gods (2020) and The Echoed Realm (2021) from The Parliament House Press, and a short supernatural horror story, These Silent Walls (2020), printed in Three Crows Magazine.

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  • Alex Pugsley

    Following the publication of his debut novel, Alex Pugsley was named one of CBC’s Writers to Watch. He’s been nominated for Canadian Comedy Awards, Hot Doc Awards, and National Magazine Awards, and is a winner of the Journey Prize. His first story collection, Shimmer, has just been published by Biblioasis.

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  • Alexandra Mae Jones

    ALEXANDRA MAE JONES is a queer writer based in Toronto. Her short fiction has been published in several literary magazines, including Third Wednesday, EVENT, and Prairie Fire. She currently does freelance reporting for CTVNews.ca. Her debut YA novel, THE QUEEN OF JUNK ISLAND, came out in May with Annick Press.

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  • Amanda Leduc

    Amanda Leduc is the author of the novel THE CENTAUR’S WIFE (Random House Canada, 2021) and the non-fiction book DISFIGURED: ON FAIRY TALES, DISABILITY, AND MAKING SPACE (Coach House Books, 2020), which was shortlisted for both the 2020 Governor General’s Award in Nonfiction and the 2020 Barbellion Prize. She is also the author of an earlier novel, THE MIRACLES OF ORDINARY MEN (ECW Press, 2013). She has cerebral palsy and lives in Hamilton, Ontario, where she serves as the Communications Coordinator for the Festival of Literary Diversity (FOLD), Canada’s first festival for diverse authors and stories.

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  • Amita Parikh

    Amita Parikh was born and raised in Toronto, Canada. She earned an Honours BSc from The University of Toronto and works in the tech industry. The Circus Train is her first novel.

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  • andrea bennett

    andrea bennett is a National Magazine Award-winning writer and the managing editor of The Tyee. Their most recent book, Like a Boy but Not a Boy, was a CBC Books’ pick for top Canadian non-fiction of 2020 and a 2022 selection for the American Library Association’s Over the Rainbow shortlist.

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  • Andrew Faulkner

    Andrew Faulkner is the author of two books of poetry, Heady Bloom and Need Machine, and several chapbooks, one of which was shortlisted for the bpNichol Chapbook Award. He has an MFA from the University of Guelph and lives in Picton, Ontario, where he works as the managing editor of Invisible Publishing.

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  • Andrew Larsen

    Andrew Larsen is the author of more than a dozen children’s books, including A Squiggly Story, The Thing Lenny Loves Most About Baseball, The Bagel King and Me, Toma and the Concrete Garden. Sometimes Andrew goes looking for stories and sometimes stories come looking for him. Andrew writes his stories (some squigglier than others) in Toronto, Ontario, where he lives with his wife, two children and his dog, Sally.

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  • Angela Misri

    Angela Misri is an award-winning journalist, author and educator. Her detective series is The Portia Adams Adventures and her first middle-grade series is Tails from the Apocalypse. Pickles vs the Zombies, the first book in that series, won the 2021 Hackmatack award. ValHamster is the latest book in the Apocalypse series.

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  • Ann Shin

    Ann Shin is a filmmaker and award-winning writer. Her documentary My Enemy, My Brother was shortlisted for a 2016 Academy Award and nominated for an Emmy. Her documentary, The Defector: Escape from North Korea won 7 awards including Best Documentary and Best Documentary Director at the 2014 Canadian Screen Academy Awards, a SXSW Interactive Award, and a Canadian Digi Award. She has directed programs for CBC, Discovery Channel, HGTV, History Channel, W Network, PBS, and Fine Living Network.

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  • Anne Lazurko

    Anne Lazurko is author of the novel What Is Written on the Tonuge (ECW Press 2022). Her first novel Dollybird won the Willa Award for Historical Fiction, and her short prose and poetry is published in Canadian literary magazines and anthologies. She writes from her farm near Weyburn Saskatchewan.

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  • Ansley Simpson

    Ansley Simpson is a Toronto-based Anishinaabe musician known for her poetic lyrics, deeply moving vocal-only performances, and dream-like arrangements.

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  • Aparita Bhandari

    Aparita Bhandari is an arts and life reporter in Toronto. She has been published in Canadian media including CBC, the Toronto Star, The Globe and Mail and Walrus magazine. Her areas of interest and expertise lie in the intersections of gender, culture and ethnicity. She is the producer and co-host of the Hindi language podcast, KhabardaarPodcast.com.

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  • Assiyah Jamilla Touré

    Assiyah Jamilla Touré is a multidisciplinary artist of West African descent. They were born and raised on Skwxwú7mesh land and lived for many years in Kanien’kehà:ka territory (Montreal) and are now based on the lands of the Mississaugas of the Anishinaabe, the Haudenosaunee Confederacy and the Wendat (Toronto). In 2018 their chapbook feral was published by House House Press. Autowar is their first full-length collection.

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  • Bardia Sinaee

    Bardia Sinaee was born in Tehran, Iran, and currently lives in Toronto. He is the author of the chapbooks Blue Night Express and Salamander Festival. His poems have also appeared in magazines across Canada and in several editions of Best Canadian Poetry. In 2012 his poem “Barnacle Goose Ballad” was Reader’s Choice winner for The Walrus Poetry Prize, and in 2020 he was co-winner of the Capilano Review’s Robin Blaser Award. He holds an M.F.A. in Poetry from Guelph University’s Graduate Program in Creative Writing. Intruder is his first book.

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  • Ben Berman Ghan

    Ben Berman Ghan is an incoming Ph.D. student at The University of Calgary and the author of both What We See in the Smoke (Crowsnest Books 2019) and Visitation Seeds (845 Press 2020). His next novel on cyborgs and the Anthropocene is forthcoming in 2024 with Wolsak and Wynn.

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  • Beth Kaplan

    Beth Kaplan, a former actress, taught memoir and personal essay writing at Ryerson (now Toronto Metropolitan University) from 1994 to 2020, and has taught for fifteen years also at the University of Toronto, where she was given the Excellence in Teaching Award. She’s the author of two memoirs, a biography, and a textbook guide to creative writing. Loose Woman: my odyssey from lost to found, about the dramatic year her life changed completely, came out in 2020 and was a finalist for the Whistler Independent Book Award.

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  • Bev Katz Rosenbaum

    Bev Katz Rosenbaum is the author of several works of fiction. She has worked as a fiction and magazine editor, and has taught writing at the college level. Currently, Bev juggles freelance fiction editing with writing books for teens. Her newest YA novel, I’m Good and Other Lies, was released on September 25th by DCB/Cormorant.

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  • Brian Francis

    Brian Francis’s most recent work, Missed Connections: A Memoir in Letters Never Sent, was published in 2021. His 2019 YA novel, Break in Case of Emergency, was a finalist for the Governor General’s Literary Awards. His first novel, Fruit, was a 2009 CBC Canada Reads finalist.

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  • Brian McLachlan

    Brian McLachlan is a cartoonist who’s latest book Complete the Quest: The Poisonous Library is a brand new combination of graphic novel and role playing game. He also writes Owl Magazine’s monthly Spruce Street Squad and has cartooned for Nickeloden, The Nib, and the New Yorker.

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  • Bruce Arthur

    Bruce Arthur is a Toronto-based columnist for the Star. He was named the 2012 sportswriter of the year by Sports Media Canada and is also a contributor to TSN and TSN Radio.

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  • Cadence Weapon

    Cadence Weapon is Edmonton-born, Toronto-based rapper, producer, writer and poet Rollie Pemberton. Pemberton has released five albums, all of which have been nominated for the Polaris Prize, with Breaking Kayfabe (2006) and Hope In Dirt City (2012) being shortlist nominees. His music is known for pairing groundbreaking production with incisive, socially conscious lyricism. Pemberton served as Poet Laureate of Edmonton from 2009 to 2011. His poem “The Garden” was incorporated into a bronze sculpture at the Alberta Legislature Grounds in Edmonton in 2018. He has hosted lectures and conducted live interviews for CBC q and Red Bull Music Academy. His newest album Parallel World was released this April and was selected as a 2021 Polaris Prize Short List nominee. A book about his career called Bedroom Rapper will be published by McClelland & Stewart in May 2022.

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  • Candas Jane Dorsey

    Candas Jane Dorsey is an internationally-known writer, editor, former publisher, community-builder, and activist living in Edmonton, Alberta. She is the award-winning author of Black Wine, A Paradigm of Earth, Machine Sex and other stories, Vanilla and other stories, Ice and other stories, The Adventures of Isabel and What’s the Matter with Mary Jane? (the Epitome Apartments Mystery Series), and YA novel The Story of My Life, Ongoing, by CS Cobb.

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  • Carmen Mok

    CARMEN MOK is a studio-art graduate of the University of Waterloo and a craft and design graduate of Sheridan College. She has illustrated Percy’s Museum by Sara O’Leary, Violet Shrink by Christine Baldacchino and Grandmother’s Visit by Betty Quan, an Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature Picture Book Honor title. Carmen’s other noteworthy books include A Stopwatch from Grampa by Loretta Garbutt, Cone Cat by Sarah Howden, I Hear You, Forest by Kallie George and When I Listen To Silence by Jean E. Pendziwol.

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  • Catherine Graham

    Catherine Graham is the author of The Most Cunning Heart and the award-winning novel Quarry. Æther: An Out-of-Body Lyric was a finalist for the Toronto Book Awards and The Celery Forest was named a CBC Best Book of the Year. She leads the TIFA Book Club and co-hosts The Hummingbird Podcast. www.catherinegraham.com @catgrahampoet

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  • Catherine Hernandez

    Catherine Hernandez is an author and a screenwriter. Her novel, Scarborough was a finalist for Canada Reads 2022 and the film adaptation won 8 Canadian Screen Awards including Best Picture and Best Adapted Screenplay. Where Do Your Feelings Live? is her third children’s book.

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  • Charlie Petch

    Charlie Petch (they/he) is a disabled/queer/transmasculine poet, librettist, playwright, mentor & musician. Petch received the Golden Beret, from The League of Canadian Poets. Their book “Why I Was Late” (Brick Books), was listed on The Walrus’ best of 2021. They have featured on CBC’s Q, and founded Queer Slam. www.charliecpetch.com

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  • Chelsea Vowel

    Chelsea Vowel is Métis from manitow-sâkahikan (Lac Ste. Anne) Alberta, residing in amiskwacîwâskihikan (Edmonton). Parent to six children, she has a BEd, an LLB, and a MA, and is a Cree language instructor and assistant lecturer at the Faculty of Native Studies at the University of Alberta. Chelsea is a public intellectual, writer, and educator whose work intersects language, gender, Métis self-determination, and resurgence. Author of Buffalo is the New Buffalo, and Indigenous Writes: A Guide to First Nations, Métis & Inuit Issues in Canada, she and her co-host Molly Swain produce the Indigenous feminist sci-fi podcast Métis in Space, and co-founded the Métis in Space Land Trust. Chelsea blogs at apihtawikosisan.com and makes legendary bannock.

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  • Cheri DiNovo

    Rev. Dr. Cheri DiNovo, C.M. is the minister at Trinity-St. Paul’s, Toronto. She is a Member of the Order of Canada, recognized for her contributions to provincial politics and her lifelong advocacy of social justice. A former Ontario MPP, Cheri passed into law more pro-LGBTQ legislation than anyone in Canadian history.

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  • Cheryll Case

    Cheryll Case, founder, and principal urban planner of CP Planning fosters relationships between government, charities, private sector industries, and communities to develop programs, partnerships and policies that reflect housing as a human right, support urban agriculture, and improve access arts and culture opportunities.

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  • Chinmayi Yathiraju

    Chinmayi Yathiraju is a self-proclaimed bookworm who loves all things books. Some of her favourite genres include fantasy and historical fiction. She is passionate about sharing her love of the written word, and volunteers as a writing workshop facilitator at Ripple Foundation, an organization that supports literacy and creativity in children.

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  • Christiane Vadnais

    Christiane Vadnais holds an MFA in creative writing, and has long been active as an events programmer and project manager in Quebec’s literary community. Radio-Canada named her a ‘Young Author to Watch’ for 2020. Fauna is her first work of fiction. She lives in Quebec City.

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  • Christina Kilbourne

    Christina Kilbourne loves to write, except author bios. Needless to say, she’s been scribbling stories since she could hold a crayon and has had a fair number of books published. Most notably, The Limitless Sky, a YA optimistic dystopian novel set 700 years in the future, was released in May 2022 and published by Dundurn Press.

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  • Christine Miskonoodinkwe-Smith

    Christine Miskonoodinkwe Smith is a Saulteaux woman from Peguis First Nation. She is an editor, writer and journalist who graduated from the University of Toronto with a specialization in Aboriginal Studies in June 2011 and went on to receive her Master’s in Education in Social Justice in June 2017. Her first non-fiction story “Choosing the Path to Healing” appeared in the 2006 anthology Growing Up Girl: An Anthology of Voices from Marginalized Spaces. She has written for the Native Canadian, Anishinabek News, Windspeaker, FNH Magazine, New Tribe Magazine, Muskrat Magazine and the Piker Press. These Are the Stories, is Christine’s first book. She has also co-edited the anthology Bawaajigan with fellow Indigenous writer Nathan Niigan Noodin Adler.

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  • Chy Ryan Spain

    Chy Ryan Spain is a Black, queer, non-binary, multi-disciplinary artist, activist, organizer and educator based in Toronto, Canada. Spain is also an award-winning theatre artist and an alum of Swathmore college with a degree in English Literature and Education. This is Spain’s first published work of fiction.

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  • Claudine Crangle

    Claudine Crangle is the author and illustrator of The House Next Door, Priscilla Pack Rat and Woolfred Cannot Eat Dandelions. You can learn more about her world of making at her website: www.claudinecrangle.com

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  • Cody Caetano

    Cody Caetano is a writer of Anishinaabe and Portuguese descent and an off-reserve member of Pinaymootang First Nation. He has an MA in Creative Writing from the University of Toronto, where he wrote this memoir under the mentorship of Lee Maracle.

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  • Corey Mintz

    Corey Mintz is a freelance food reporter (New York Times, Globe and Mail, Eater and others), focusing on the intersection between food with labor, politics, farming, ethics and culture. He has been a cook, a restaurant critic and is the author of How to Host a Dinner Party, which chronicled 192 dinner parties he hosted with fascinating people including politicians, refugees, criminals, artists, academics, acupuncturists, hi-rise window washers, competitive barbecuers and one monkey.

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  • Dan K. Woo

    Dan K. Woo occasionally teaches creative writing at the University of Toronto School of Continuing Studies and works full time for cybersecurity firm GoSecure. His most recent book, Taobao: Stories, was selected by the Chicago Review of Books as one of the most anticipated books of 2022.

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  • Daniel Lockhart

    D.A. Lockhart is the author of multiple collections of poetry and short fiction. His most recent work includes Bearmen Descend Upon Gimli (Frontenac House, 2021), Go Down Odawa Way (Kegedonce Press Press, 2021), and Breaking Right: Stories (Porcupine’s Quill, 2021). His work has appeared widely throughout Turtle Island including Best Canadian Poetry 2019, the Malahat Review, Grain, CV2, TriQuarterly, The Fiddlehead, ARC Poetry Magazine, and Belt. Along the way his work has garnered numerous Pushcart Prize nominations, National Magazine Award nominations, and Best of the Net nominations. He is a graduate of the Indiana University – Bloomington MFA in Creative Writing program where he held a Neal-Marshall Graduate Fellowship in Creative Writing. He is pùkuwànkoamimëns of the Moravian of the Thames First Nation. Lockhart currently resides at Waawiiyaatanong and Pelee Island where he is the publisher at Urban Farmhouse Press and poetry editor at the Windsor Review.

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  • David Rider

    David Rider is the Toronto Star’s city hall bureau chief.

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  • Dawn Promislow

    Dawn Promislow was born and raised in Johannesburg, South Africa, and has lived in Toronto since 1987. She is a graduate of the Humber School for Writers where she was mentored by Olive Senior, and she was mentored by Nalo Hopkinson in Diaspora Dialogues’s short-form mentorship program. Her collection Jewels and Other Stories (Mawenzi House, 2010) was critically acclaimed, long-listed for the Frank O’Connor International Short Story Award, and named one of the eight best debuts of 2011 by The Globe and Mail. Dawn has published short stories, poems, and essays, in literary journals in Canada, the US, and the UK, where they have been short-listed for awards. Wan, her novel, was published by Freehand Books on May 1, 2022.

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  • Deanna McFadden

    Deanna McFadden is the Publishing Director at Wattpad Books.

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  • Deborah Dundas

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  • Deborah Falaye

    Deborah Falaye is a Nigerian-Canadian young adult author. She grew up in Lagos, Nigeria, where she spent her time devouring African literature, pestering her grandma for folktales, and tricking her grandfather into watching Passions every night. When she’s not writing about fierce Black girls with badass magic, she can be found obsessing over all things reality TV.

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  • Deborah Kerbel

    DEBORAH KERBEL is the award-winning author of eight novels for middle grade and young adult readers, one graphic novel, and many picture books and board books. Born in London, UK, Deborah now lives and writes in Thornhill with her husband, two teens, and a rescue schnoodle named Freddie.

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  • Derek Mascarenhas

    Derek Mascarenhas is a graduate of the University of Toronto SCS Creative Writing Program, a finalist and runner up for the Penguin Random House of Canada Student Award for Fiction, and a nominee for the Marina Nemat Award. His linked short story collection, Coconut Dreams, was called a “stunning debut” in Quill and Quire’s starred review and The Globe and Mail named it one of the best reads from Canadian small presses. Derek is currently working on a speculative novel, and his picture books, 100 Chapatis, and The Mango Monster, are forthcoming in 2023 and 2024.

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  • Dorothea Paas

    For over a decade, Paas has played her unique, prismatic style of folk songcraft for audiences across North America, and lent her talents as a guitarist and vocalist to artists like Jennifer Castle, U.S. Girls and Badge Époque Ensemble. She released her Polaris Prize- nominated debut LP, Anything Can’t Happen, in May of 2021.

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  • Drew Hayden Taylor

    Originally from the Curve Lake First Nations, in Central Ontario, Drew Hayden Taylor has spent the last two decades travelling the world and writing about it from the Aboriginal perspective. An award-winning playwright, author, columnist, film maker and lecturer, he has managed to bridge the gap between cultures by tickling the funny bone.

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  • Drew Shannon

    Drew Shannon is an illustrator and cartoonist living in Toronto. He has been working professionally for 10 years, and his work has appeared in newspapers, magazines, children’s books. Clients include The Globe and Mail, CBC, Reader’s Digest, The Walrus and more. He enjoys the collaborative element of telling diverse stories, and exploring new styles and new ways of image-making. When not drawing he likes to play Dungeons and Dragons with his friends and watch movies on the couch with his cat Ripley.

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  • Elisabeth de Mariaffi

    Elisabeth de Mariaffi is the critically acclaimed author of four books, including her newest novel, The Retreat, about a dancer who must separate truth from lies in order to survive a deadly storm at a remote mountain arts retreat, which hit bookstores in July 2021. Elisabeth makes her home in St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador.

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  • Ella Russell

    Ella Russell grew up in Marblehead Massachusetts, where they dreamed of becoming an author. Now, they live in Toronto Ontario with a cat named Saffron and a dog named Juniper, and dream of getting a rabbit named Coriander. Ella’s debut book is Pink Is for Everybody!, illustrated by Udayana Lugo.

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  • Emma Healey

    Emma Healey is the author of two books of poetry, Begin with the End in Mind and Stereoblind. Her work has been published in outlets like the Globe and Mail (where she once served as resident poetry critic), the Toronto Star, the National Post, The LA Review of Books, The FADER, Hazlitt, The Hairpin, Real Life, The Walrus, Toronto Life, Canadian Art, Raptors HQ, Joyland, The Puritan, Maisonneuve, C Magazine, Said the Gramophone and more. She also plays guitar in a punk band called Rotten Column.

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  • Eric Fan

    Eric Fan is a writer and illustrator who received his formal art training at OCAD University in Toronto. Along with his brother Terry, they are known professionally as the Fan Brothers. Eric has a passion for vintage bikes, clockwork contraptions, and impossible dreams.

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  • Erin Pepler

    Erin Pepler is a freelance writer who lives in the greater Toronto area. She is the author of Send Me Into The Woods Alone, a collection of essays on motherhood. Erin’s work has appeared in Today’s Parent, Chatelaine, Romper, Broadview Magazine, Scary Mommy, MoneySense, Reader’s Digest and more. You can find Erin on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram as well as at erinpepler.com.

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  • Farah Heron

    Farah is a critically acclaimed writer of romantic comedies for adults and teenagers. Her books have been praised in Entertainment Weekly, USA Today, and the Globe and Mail, and have been named as best books of the year by CBC books and NPR. She lives in Toronto with her family.

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  • Farzana Doctor

    Farzana Doctor is a Tkaronto-based author, activist and Registered Social Worker. She has written four critically acclaimed novels. Her latest, Seven, which Ms. Magazine described as “fully feminist and ambitiously bold”, has been chosen for multiple 2020 Best Book lists and shortlisted for the Trillium and Evergreen Awards. Her poetry collection, You Still Look The Same, will be released in May 2022. Farzana is also the Maasi behind Dear Maasi, a new sex and relationships column for FGM/C survivors.

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  • Fawn Parker

    Fawn Parker is the author of Set-Point and Dumb-Show (ARP Books), What We Both Know (M&S), and the forthcoming experimental novel Hi, it’s me (M&S).

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  • Genevieve Graham

    Genevieve Graham is the USA TODAY and #1 bestselling author of The Forgotten Home Child, Letters Across the Sea, Tides of Honour, Promises to Keep, Come from Away, and At the Mountain’s Edge. Her latest, Bluebird was published April 2022. Genevieve is passionate about breathing life back into Canadian history through tales of love and adventure.

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  • Gillian Sze

    Gillian Sze is the author of multiple poetry collections and picture books. She studied creative writing and received a PhD in études anglaises from Université de Montréal. Her latest book, Quiet Night Think (ECW Press, Apr. 2022), explores the early shaping of a writer, the creative process, and motherhood.

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  • Gisele Corinthios

    Former host of TVOKIDS, Gisele continues to produce shows for children. Kids will enjoy her preschool YouTube channel, The Gisele Mishmash, which streams on AmebaTV. This fall, Gisele will star in a spin-off animated series, Gisele’s Mishmash Adventures.  Aside, Gisele would love grownups to say Hello on TikTok or Instagram!

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  • Gord Grisenthwaite

    Gord is Nłeʔkepmx, member of the Lytton First Nation, and has earned an MA in English Literature & Creative Writing at the University of Windsor (2020). His first novel Home Waltz was a finalist for a Governor General’s Award.

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  • H.N. Khan

    H.N. KHAN is a first-time author. Born in Pakistan, he immigrated to Canada at age seven and grew up in Regent Park, a low-income community housing project. After graduating with a business degree he decided to drop out of law school to pursue a career in Toronto’s start-up scene. Since then, he’s helped build and market software that’s used by millions around the world. He is a recent graduate from Humber’s School for Writers’ correspondence program.

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  • Heather O'Neill

    Heather O’Neill is a novelist, short-story writer and essayist. Her most recent bestselling novel, The Lonely Hearts Hotel, won the Paragraphe Hugh MacLennan Prize for Fiction and was longlisted for the Women’s Prize for Fiction and CBC’s Canada Reads. Her previous work, which includes Lullabies for Little Criminals, The Girl Who Was Saturday Night and Daydreams of Angels, has been shortlisted for the Governor General’s Literary Award for Fiction, the Orange Prize for Fiction and the Scotiabank Giller Prize two years in a row. She has won CBC’s Canada Reads and the Danuta Gleed Award. Born and raised in Montreal, O’Neill lives there with her daughter.

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  • Helen Chau Bradley

    Helen Chau Bradley is a writer and editor living in Tiohtià:ke (Montreal). They are the author of Personal Attention Roleplay and Automatic Object Lessons. They are the fiction editor at This Magazine, an acquisitions editor at Metonymy Press, and the host of Strange Futures, a speculative fiction book club via Librairie Drawn & Quarterly.

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  • Helen Humphreys

    HELEN HUMPHREYS is an acclaimed and award-winning author of fiction, non-fiction and poetry. She has won the Rogers Writers’ Trust Fiction Prize, a Lambda Literary Award for Fiction and the Toronto Book Award. And she has been a finalist for the Governor General’s Award for Fiction, the Trillium Book Prize and CBC Radio’s Canada Reads. Her most recent novel is Rabbit Foot Bill. The recipient of the Harbourfront Festival Prize for literary excellence, Helen Humphreys lives in Kingston, Ontario.

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  • Hemant Baghwani

    Hemant Baghwani helms the Amaya Group of Restaurants, where his focus now lies with mentoring chefs, cooks, and service staff alike. He has a true passion for food and is incredibly innovative in bringing that passion to life for his customers, employees and business partners. His leadership style was born out of this passion and vision to make a difference as well as his life experiences.

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  • j wallace skelton

    j wallace skelton is a PhD candidate in Curriculum, Teaching and Learning at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education at the University of Toronto. j’s current research uses arts-based methods and co-research with children to explore what 2SLGBTQ children and children from 2SLGBTQ families would like school to be like. j’s other research interests include asset-based research, queer and trans theory in education, and community engagement. j has a strong interest in knowledge translation and making academia accessible, and uses comics as a way to convey information.

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  • J. Torres

    J. Torres is the writer of the original Teen Titans Go comic book series, the Forest of Reading Honour Book Planet Hockey, and Lola: A Ghost Story, recipient of an Aesop Accolade from the American Folklore Society. His latest projects include the graphic novel Stealing Home and Batman: Knightwatch for DC Comics.

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  • Jaskaran Singh Sandhu

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  • Jason Li

    Jason Li is an independent designer, artist, and educator. His practice revolves around promulgating bottom-up narratives, exploring networked technology, and helping people live safely on the internet. He is an editor at Paradise Systems and a member of Zine Coop. He currently lives in Toronto.

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  • Jean Marc Ah-Sen

    Jean Marc Ah-Sen is the author of Grand Menteur, In the Beggarly Style of Imitation, and a participant in the collaborative omnibus novel Disintegration in Four Parts. His writing has appeared in Maclean’s, Hazlitt, Maisonneuve, Catapult, and elsewhere. The National Post has hailed his writing as “an inventive escape from the conventional.”

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  • Jeff Ho (Ho Ka Kei)

    Ho Ka Kei / Jeff Ho is a Toronto-based theatre artist, originally from Hong Kong. His works include Iphigenia and the Furies (On Taurian Land), Antigone:方, and trace. He has held residencies with the Stratford Festival, Tarragon Theatre, Nightswimming, Cahoots, the Banff Playwrights Lab, and Factory Theatre.

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  • Jenny Yuen

    Jenny Yuen is the author of Polyamorous: Living and Loving More, which showcases Canadian stories of ethical non-monogamy. She is an award-winning news reporter, covering local, provincial and national stories, and has written for the Toronto Sun, Toronto Life, Now Magazine and CBC. She currently works in communications, is a proud poly partner and lives in Toronto with her family.

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  • Jeremy Luke-Hill

    Appearing in lieu of nominated poet Roxanna Bennett (The Untranslateable I, 2021, Gordon Hill Press).

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  • Jesse Wente

    Jesse Wente is an Anishinaabe writer, broadcaster, and arts leader. Born and raised in Toronto, his family comes from Chicago and Genaabaajing Anishinaabek and he is a member of the Serpent River First Nation. Best known for more than two decades spent as a columnist for CBC Radio’s Metro Morning, he also worked at the Toronto International Film Festival for eleven years. In February 2018 he was named the first Executive Director of the Indigenous Screen Office. Wente was appointed Chair of the Canada Council for the Arts in 2020, the only First Nations person to ever hold the position.

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  • Jordan Himelfarb

    Jordan Himelfarb is a managing editor at the Toronto Star where he oversees political, national and international coverage. Previously, he was the politics editor, with oversight of the Ottawa, Queen’s Park and Washington bureaus. Himelfarb joined the paper in 2012, working with the editorial board before moving over to news.

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  • Joseph A. Dandurand

    Joseph A. Dandurand is a member of Kwantlen First Nation located on the Fraser River about 20 minutes east of Vancouver. He resides there with his 3 children Danessa, Marlysse, and Jace. Joseph is the Director of the Kwantlen Cultural Center. He has just completed his residency as the Storyteller in Residence at the Vancouver Public Library. He has published 13 books of poetry and his children’s play: Th’owixiya: the hungry Feast dish by Playwrights Press Canada his book of short stories and short plays for children: The Sasquatch, the fire, and the cedar basket will be published by Nightwood Press along with his poetry manuscript: Here we come . He also is very busy Storytelling at many events and Schools.

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  • Josh Rosen

    Josh Rosen is a Toronto-based cartoonist and illustrator. He has done illustration work for magazines, animation projects, documentary films and roleplaying games, although comics and graphic novels will always be his first love. He has contributed to Slate Magazine, CAROUSEL Magazine, and the Toronto Comics Anthology series. “The Good Fight” is his first full-length graphic novel. When not drawing, Josh works in arts and literacy education.

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  • Joyce Grant

    Joyce Grant is a freelance journalist and teaches at Humber College. She owns the award-winning website TeachingKidsNews.com and gives presentations at schools and libraries about journalism and fake news. “Can You Believe It?” is her sixth children’s book. Joyce lives with her family in Hamilton, Ontario.

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  • Judy I Lin

    Judy I. Lin is the #1 New York Times-bestselling author of the Book of Tea duology. She writes stories inspired by the legends and myths she grew up with in Taiwan and currently lives on the Canadian prairies with her husband and daughters.

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  • Kai Cheng Thom

    Kai Cheng Thom is a writer, performance artist, and community healer in Toronto. She is the author of the novel Fierce Femmes and Notorious Liars: A Dangerous Trans Girl’s Confabulous Memoir (Metonymy Press), the poetry collection a place called No Homeland (an American Library Association Stonewall Honor Book in 2018), and the children’s picture book From the Stars in the Sky to the Fish in the Sea, illustrated by Kai Yun Ching and Wai-Yant Li. Her essay collection I Hope We Choose Love: A Trans Girl’s Notes at the End of the World was an American Library Association Stonewall Honor Book in 2020. Kai Cheng won the Writers’ Trust of Canada’s Dayne Ogilvie Prize for LGBTQ Emerging Writers in 2017.

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  • Karon Liu

    Karon Liu is a staff food reporter for the Toronto Star. He recently helped launch a new food section focusing on the hidden gems and culinary vastness of the Greater Toronto Area. His writing can be found every Thursday in the paper.

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  • Kate Chomyshyn

    Kate Chomyshyn is a professional chef with 18 years of experience working in Canada’s best restaurants. After meeting her husband, Julio Guajardo, at Le Cordon Bleu Ottawa in 2004 they moved to Montreal together to pursue their careers, working at many of the country’s best restaurants. Over the next decade K&J would research and travel through Mexico in the hopes of bringing true Mexican cuisine to Canada. K&J owned LA CaTRINA Paletas in Montreal and opened as executive chef and consultants El Rey Mezcal Bar, Rosalinda, Quetzal, Birria Balam and are now partners in the newly opened Fonda Balam.

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  • Kate Freiman

    Kate Freiman is an award-winning, USA-Today and national best-selling author of romantic fiction in several sub-genres. She is the current President of the Toronto Chapter of Sisters in Crime, and a member of Toronto Romance Writers, because whether life or death is at stake, she insists on a satisfying ending.

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  • Kate Heartfield

    Kate Heartfield’s latest novel, The Embroidered Book, is a Sunday Times bestselling historical fantasy about Marie Antoinette and her sister, Maria Carolina. Kate’s novels, novellas, short stories and games have won or been shortlisted for several major awards. She is a former journalist who lives near Ottawa.

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  • Katherine Bruce

    Katherine Bruce is the Executive Director of the Planet in Focus Environmental Film Festival. She has worked extensively in the arts sector as a producer in film, theatre and visual arts including the UK-based Cape Farewell – The cultural response to climate change in partnership with ROM Contemporary Culture. Katherine has an MA in Communication and Cultural Studies with a research focus on fresh water as both a commodity and a human right through the historical narrative of Toronto’s R.C. Harris Filtration Plant. She also serves on the steering committee of CREW Toronto, the Advisory Committee for Youth Unstoppable and on the board of the international Green Film Network.

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  • Kathy Friedman

    KATHY FRIEDMAN studied creative writing at the University of British Columbia and the University of Guelph, and was a finalist for the Writers’ Trust Bronwen Wallace Award for Emerging Writers. Her writing has appeared in publications such as Grain, Geist, PRISM international, Canadian Notes & Queries, and the New Quarterly. She is the co-founder and artistic director of InkWell Workshops. Kathy Friedman lives in Toronto.

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  • Kathy Lu

    Kathy is a high school student based in Toronto. Kathy enjoys reading, writing, and drawing, and happens to be currently working on her very first novel!

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  • Katie Welch

    Katie Welch writes fiction and teaches music in Kamloops, BC, on the traditional, unceded territory of the Secwepemc people. Her short stories have been published in EVENT Magazine, Prairie Fire, The Antigonish Review, The Temz Review, The Quarantine Review and elsewhere. Her debut novel MAD HONEY was published in May 2022 by Wolsak and Wynn.

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  • Katie Zdybel

    Equipoise, Katie Zdybel’s debut collection was shortlisted for the HarperCollins/UBC Prize for Best New Fiction. She won the Peter Hinchcliffe Short Fiction Award, the Exile Carter V. Cooper Short Fiction award, and two Canada Council for the Arts Awards. Katie is represented by CookeMcDermid and currently working on her first novel.

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  • Kim Fu

    Kim Fu is the award-winning author of two novels, a collection of poetry, and most recently, the story collection Lesser Known Monsters of the 21st Century, which received starred reviews from Publishers Weekly, Kirkus, Foreword, Booklist, Shelf Awareness, and Quill & Quire. She lives in Seattle, Washington.

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  • Kristin Rushowy

    Kristin Rushowy is a reporter in the Queen’s Park bureau, covering Ontario politics. Prior to that, she spent 15 years on the education beat, with a particular focus on early years and the provincial government move to full-day kindergarten. She was part of the Star’s 2011 National Newspaper Award-winning team for breaking news coverage of the G20 summit, and worked on the Star’s Autism Project, which was nominated for a National Newspaper Award as well as a Michener Award for public service journalism.

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  • Laura Alary

    Laura Alary writes stories that make us bigger on the inside. She grew up in Halifax, but now lives in Toronto, where she likes to walk by the lake, collect beach glass, and wonder about the world. Her newest books are Sun in My Tummy and The Astronomer Who Questioned Everything.

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  • Laurie D. Graham

    Laurie D. Graham grew up in Treaty 6 territory, and she currently lives in Nogojiwanong, in the treaty and traditional territory of the Mississauga Anishinaabeg, where she is a writer, an editor, and the publisher of Brick magazine. Her previous books are Rove and Settler Education.

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  • Layla Ahmad

    Layla Ahmad was born in Toronto and spent her childhood in New Jersey. She has been a voracious reader and writer since she could wield a pencil, which shaped her love of storytelling. She wants to write for those who feel unseen. Layla loves consuming all forms of media, cooking different pasta sauces, and feels best understood by her dog, Pippa.

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  • Leonarda Carranza

    Leonarda Carranza was born in San Salvador. She holds a Ph.D. in Social Justice Education from the University of Toronto. She is the author of the picture book, Abuelita & Me and one of the editors of Tongues: On Longing and Belonging Through Language. She lives in Brampton, Ontario.

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  • Linda Rui Feng

    Born in Shanghai, Linda Rui Feng teaches at the University of Toronto, where her research in Chinese cultural history often takes her to long-forgotten books from the ninth century and, more recently, the history of scent and aromatics. Her fiction has been supported by residencies at MacDowell and by the Toronto Arts Council, and her prose and poetry have appeared in journals such as The Fiddlehead, Kenyon Review Online, and Washington Square Review. Her first novel, Swimming Back to Trout River, traces the far-flung orbits of a family across two continents, and explores the themes of music and migration in the aftermath of one of China’s most tumultuous eras in the twentieth century.

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  • Lindsay B-e

    Lindsay B-e is a writer and filmmaker. Their first full-length poetry collection, The Cyborg Anthology, is published by Brick Books. Lindsay B-e grew up in the village of Clavet, Saskatchewan and currently lives in Toronto. They have two kids, two dogs, and two cats.

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  • Madhur Anand

    MADHUR ANAND is the author of the experimental memoir This Red Line Goes Straight to Your Heart, and the poetry collections A New Index for Predicting Catastrophes and Parasitic Oscillations. She received the Governor General’s Literary Award in 2021. She is a professor of ecology and sustainability at the University of Guelph.

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  • Maria Iqbal

    Maria Iqbal is a 905 Region-based reporter for the Star. Before joining the Star, she covered aging issues for The Hamilton Spectator, where she won an Ontario Newspaper Award for Beat Reporting. She previously reported for The Globe and Mail, and served as editor-in-chief at the Review of Journalism and The Medium. She completed her master’s degree in journalism from Toronto Metropolitan University.

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  • Marissa Stapley

    Marissa Stapley is the New York Times and national bestselling author of Lucky, the first Canadian Reese’s Book Club Pick. She is also the author of the bestselling books The Last ResortThings to Do When It’s Raining, and Mating for Life. Her journalism has appeared in newspapers and magazines across North America. She lives in Toronto with her family. Visit her at MarissaStapley.com or follow her on Instagram and Twitter @MarissaStapley.

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  • Martha Bátiz

    Mexican-Canadian author of the award-winning novella Boca de lobo/ Damiana’s Reprieve (Exile, 2018), and the short-story collections Plaza Requiem: Stories at the Edge of Ordinary Lives (Exile, 2017) and No Stars in the Sky (House of Anansi, 2022). She has been named one of the 10 Most Successful Mexicans in Canada and the Top 10 Most Influential Hispanic-Canadians.

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  • Martin Regg Cohn

    Martin Regg Cohn writes a political column for the Toronto Star focusing on Ontario politics. A foreign correspondent for 11 years, he was chief of the Middle East and Asia bureaus, then Foreign Editor. He has been nominated five times for the National Newspaper Award. He previously covered national politics from Ottawa. He runs the Democracy Forum at Toronto Metropolitan University, and is a Senior Fellow at the Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy at U of T.

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  • Maude Barlow

    Maude Barlow is the bestselling author of 20 books. She sits on the board of Food & Water Watch, the Global Alliance for the Rights of Nature, and is a councillor with the World Future Council. She served as senior water advisor to the UN General Assembly and was a leader in the campaign to have water recognized as a human right. She is the recipient of fourteen honorary doctorates, the Right Livelihood Award and is the current chancellor of Brescia University. She lives in Ottawa, Ontario.

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  • Megan Kearney

    Megan Kearney is a Toronto-based cartoonist with a background in animation. She works as a writer, illustrator and educator, and is a frequent guest at conventions across North America.

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  • Megan Ogilvie

    Megan Ogilvie is a Toronto-based health reporter for the Star. She has a graduate degree in science writing from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and has spent much of her 15-year journalism career writing about science, health and medicine. Megan has authored three successful series for the Star, including the popular nutrition column, The Dish, and more recently, Tree of the Week. Since March 2020, Megan has been a key member of the Star team covering the COVID-19 pandemic.

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  • Méira Cook

    Méira Cook is the author of the novels Once More with Feeling, The House on Sugarbush Road, and Nightwatching. She has also published five books of poetry, most recently Monologue Dogs. Born and raised in Johannesburg, South Africa, she now lives in Winnipeg.

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  • Michael Fraser

    Michael Fraser is widely published. He is published in Best Canadian Poetry in English 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. The Day-Breakers is his third poetry collection.

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  • Michelle Kadarusman

    Originally from Australia, Michelle’s home-base has been in Toronto since 2000. Her highly acclaimed middle-grade novels include The Theory of Hummingbirds, Girl of the Southern Sea and Music for Tigers. Her books have earned many nominations, including the Governor General’s Literary Awards. Her debut picture book, Room for More, is inspired by stories of Australian wildlife sheltering in wombat burrows during devasting bushfires. The book is dedicated to all who open their hearts, homes and borders to those in need.

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  • Naben Ruthnum

    Naben Ruthnum’s most recent works are the novel A Hero of Our Time and the horror novella Helpmeet. He’s written thrillers as Nathan Ripley, and also writes for the screen.

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  • Nadia L. Hohn

    Nadia L. Hohn is an award-winning author of several books for young people including the Malaika series and A Likkle Miss Lou. Her first picture book Malaika’s Costume was the 2021 TD Grade One Book Giveaway. Her picture book Malaika’s Surprise was nominated for a 2022 Blue Spruce- Forest of Reading Award. Nadia is an “artivist” who advocates for diversity in children and young adult literature. Nadia teaches at an elementary school in Toronto as well as writing for children classes at local post-secondary institutions. She is a second year MFA in Creative Writing student at the University of Guelph. She loves to travel, cook and eat vegetarian food, and immerse herself in books, music, and films.

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  • Nadine Yousif

    Nadine Yousif is a Toronto-based reporter for the Star, covering mental health. A graduate of Carleton University’s School of Journalism, she has also worked for Maclean’s Magazine, Star Edmonton, The Globe and Mail, the New Brunswick Telegraph-Journal and StarMetro Halifax. Nadine originally hails from Baghdad, Iraq, and has previously lived across the Middle East for a decade.

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  • Nancy Jo Cullen

    Nancy Jo Cullen’s poetry and fiction have appeared in The Puritan, Grain, filling Station, Plenitude, Prairie Fire, Arc, This Magazine, Best Canadian Poetry 2018, Room, The Journey Prize and Best Canadian Fiction 2012. Nancy is the 2010 recipient for the Dayne Ogilvie Prize for LGBTQ+ Emerging Writers. She’s published three collections of poetry with Frontenac House and a collection of short stories, Canary, with Biblioasis. Her first novel, The Western Alienation Merit Badge, was short-listed for the 2020 Amazon Canada First Novel Award. Her fourth poetry collection, Nothing Will Save Your Life, is available now from Wolsak & Wynn.

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  • Naseem Hrab

    Naseem Hrab is the author of the Ira Crumb series, Weekend Dad, which was a finalist for the Governor General’s Literary Awards, and The Sour Cherry Tree. She lives in Toronto, Ontario.

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  • Natalie Wee

    Natalie Wee is a queer creator whose work explores themes of race, gender, queerness, and nationhood, and is deeply informed by grassroots communities. She wrote two poetry collections, Our Bodies & Other Fine Machines (San Press, 2021) and Beast At Every Threshold (Arsenal Pulp Press, 2022).

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  • Nathan Page

    Writer of graphic novels and lover of 90s soundtracks, Nathan lives in Toronto, where the streets are never finished and the raccoons are not messing around. His works include The Montague Twins: The Witch’s Hand, The Montague Twins: The Devil’s Music, and Who Was the First Man on the Moon?: Neil Armstrong.

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  • Navneet Alang

    Navneet Alang is a technology and culture writer based in Toronto. His work has appeared in New York Magazine, The Atlantic, The Globe and Mail and more. He is currently a contributing columnist for the Toronto Star and teaches at what was formerly called Ryerson University.

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  • Nic Brewer

    Nic Brewer is a queer, autistic writer and editor. She writes fiction, mostly; her first novel, Suture, was published by Book*Hug in Fall 2021. She is the co-founder of Frond, an online literary journal for prose by LGBTQI2SA writers, and formerly co-managed the micropress words(on)pages. She lives in Kitchener with her wife and their dog.

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  • Nicole Markotić

    Nicole Markotić’s most recent poetry book is After Beowulf, which takes on the iconic hero in fun and funky ways. She has published five poetry books and three novels, edits the chapbook series, Wrinkle Press, has worked as both poetry and fiction editor, and teaches Creative Writing in Windsor.

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  • Nisa Malli

    Nisa Malli is a writer and researcher, born in Winnipeg and currently living in Toronto. She holds a BFA in Creative Writing from the University of Victoria and has completed residencies at the Banff Centre and Artscape Gibraltar Point. Her chapbook, Remitting (Baseline Press, 2019) won the bpNichol Prize. Allodynia (Palimpsest Press, 2022) is her first book.

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  • Noor Javed

    Noor Javed is an award-winning reporter with the Toronto Star who covers everything from suburban city politics to features and human interest stories about diverse communities in the GTA. A veteran reporter, Noor received an honourable mention at the 2022 Canadian Hillman Prize for her investigation of connections between politicians and developers involved in Ontario’s highway projects

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  • Nora Loreto

    Nora Loreto is a writer and activist from Quebec City. Her most recent book is Spin Doctors: How Media and Politicians Misdiagnosed the COVID-19 Pandemic (Fernwood 2021). She is also the author of Take Back the Fight: Organizing Feminism in the Digital Age (Fernwood 2020) and From Demonized to Organized: Building the New Union Movement (CCPA 2013). Nora is the editor of the Canadian Association of Labour Media and is an opinion columnist whose writing appears regularly in many publications. She co-hosts the popular podcast Sandy and Nora Talk Politics with Sandy Hudson.

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  • Pamela Korgemagi

    Pamela Korgemagi is a graduate of York University’s creative writing program. The Hunter and the Old Woman is her debut novel. She lives and works in Toronto.

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  • Paromita Roy

    Paromita believes the power of literacy creates meaningful conversations that progress societies and changes people’s lives. Together, we can create a better tomorrow.

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  • Patricia Storms

    Patricia Storms is an author and illustrator of over 30 children’s books and humour books, including The Pirate and the Penguin and Never Let You Go.  Her most recent authored books are The Dog’s Gardener, illustrated by Nathalie Dion, and Sun Wishes, the much-anticipated follow-up to Moon Wishes, both illustrated by Milan Pavlovic, and published by Groundwood Books. Patricia lives and works in Toronto with her husband Guy and a semi-domesticated cat named Hugo.

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  • Perry King

    Perry King is an author, freelance journalist, communications strategist, and proud South Parkdale-raised Torontonian. With a literary focus on sports, education and urbanism, Perry has bylines in Spacing Magazine, the Toronto Star, Globe and Mail, BBC and a litany of independent newspapers and magazines.

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  • Phoebe Wang

    Phoebe Wang is a writer and educator based in Toronto, Canada, and a first-generation Chinese-Canadian. Her debut collection of poetry, Admission Requirements was shortlisted for the Gerald Lampert Memorial Award, the Pat Lowther Memorial Award, and nominated for the Trillium Book Award. She is a poetry editor with The Fiddlehead Magazine and served as the 2021-2022 Writer-In-Residence at the University of New Brunswick.

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  • Rachel McMillan

    Rachel McMillan’s works include The Herringford and Watts mysteries, The Van Buren and DeLuca mysteries, The Three Quarter Time series, The London Restoration and The Mozart Code as well as two works of non-fiction including Dream Plan Go: A Travel Guide to Inspire Independent Adventure. Rachel lives in Toronto, Canada.

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  • Raju Mudhar

    Raju Mudhar is a co-host and producer on the Star’s podcast team. He is based in Toronto. A long-time Star reporter, he has previously worked as reporter and columnist across many of the Star’s sections, including News, Business, Sports and Arts & Entertainment.

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  • Randy Boyagoda

    Randy Boyagoda is a novelist, literary critic, and professor of English at the University of Toronto. His latest novel is Dante’s Indiana. He lives in Toronto with his wife and four children.

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  • Reema Patel

    REEMA PATEL holds a B.A. from McGill University and a J.D. from the University of Windsor. After working in Mumbai in the youth non-profit sector and in human rights advocacy, she has spent the last ten years working in provincial and municipal government. Such Big Dreams is her first novel, an excerpt of which won the Penguin Random House Student Award for Fiction at the University of Toronto’s School of Continuing Studies. She lives in Toronto, where she works as a lawyer.

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  • Rob Winger

    Rob Winger is the author of three previous collections of poetry, including Muybridge’s Horse, a Globe and Mail Best Book and CBC Literary Award winner shortlisted for the Governor General’s Literary Award, Trillium Book Award for Poetry, and Ottawa Book Award.

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  • Robert Benzie

    Robert Benzie is Queen’s Park Bureau Chief for the Toronto Star. He is responsible for coordinating the provincial political coverage for Canada’s largest circulation newspaper. Before joining the Star in 2003, he covered Queen’s Park and Toronto City Hall for the National Post, a paper he helped launch as its Deputy Toronto Editor in 1998. Prior to that, he worked for the Toronto Sun and the Ottawa Sun. Benzie has covered countless elections and leadership contests at federal, provincial and municipal levels. In 2010, Benzie received the Mary Deanne Shears Award as the Toronto Star’s reporter of the year.

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  • Robert McGill

    Robert McGill is the author of three novels, including A Suitable Companion for the End of Your Life, published in 2022 by Coach House Books. His short fiction has appeared in The Atlantic, The Dublin Review, and Hazlitt. He lives in Hamilton and teaches at the University of Toronto.

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  • Robyn Maynard

    Robyn Maynard is a Toronto-based author and scholar. She is the best-selling and award-winning author of Policing Black Lives: State violence in Canada from slavery to the present, and the co-author of Rehearsals for Living. She has published work in the Toronto Star, the Washington Post, and the Montreal Gazette.

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  • Rollie Pemberton

    Rollie Pemberton is a writer, rapper, producer and activist who performs as Cadence Weapon. He won the 2021 Polaris Music Prize for his album Parallel World. His writing has appeared in Pitchfork, The Guardian and Hazlitt. Based in Toronto, Pemberton was a former Poet Laureate in his hometown of Edmonton.

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  • Ruth Ohi

    Ruth Ohi is the author/illustrator of 22 books. Her latest is “Choose Kindness” .Her most recent books include “Scribble”, “No Help Wanted!” and the Fox and Squirrel Series. She loves engaging young readers through fun interactive drawing demos- virtually or in person! Ruth is a graduate of the Ontario College of Art.

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  • ryan fitzpatrick

    ryan fitzpatrick is the author of four books of poetry, including the recently published Coast Mountain Foot (Talonbooks, 2021) and the forthcoming Sunny Ways (Invisible, 2023). You can find him in person in Toronto/Tkaronto and online at ryanfitzpatrick.ca.

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  • S. Bear Bergman

    S. Bear Bergman is a writer, storyteller, activist, and the founder and publisher of the book press Flamingo Rampant, which makes feminist, culturally diverse children’s picture books about LGBT2Q+ kids and families. He writes creative non-fiction for grown-ups, fiction for children, resolutely factual features for various publications, and the advice column “Asking Bear.” His books include The Nearest Exit May Be Behind Us and Blood, Marriage, Wine & Glitter, and he was the co-editor along with Kate Bornstein of Gender Outlaws: The Next Generation.

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  • Saba Eitizaz

    Saba Eitizaz is the co-host and producer of the Toronto Star’s daily news podcast “This Matters”. She is an award-winning international journalist who has previously worked for the CBC, BBC World Service and Voice of America.

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  • Salma Hussain

    SALMA HUSSAIN grew up in the U.A.E., and immigrated to Canada when she was thirteen years old. She has a B.A. (Hon.) in English Literature, with a concentration in creative writing from the University of Calgary, a law degree from the University of Calgary, and a Masters in Law from McGill University. Her short stories and poems have been published in filling Station, West Coast Line, Other Voices, and in the anthology Homebound: Muslim Women Poetry Collection (Outburst Press). She is a graduate of the Humber Summer Writing Workshop and won the International Festival of Authors’ Litjam short story competition (2018). She was also a mentee in the Diaspora Dialogues long-form mentorship program last year. She lives with her family in Toronto.

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  • Sam Hiyate

    Sam Hiyate worked at literary magazines and small publishers from 1993 to 2002, and launched the literary division of The Lavin Agency in 2003, building a client list and completing his first deals. At The Rights Factory he’s keen to discover and help new writers prepare their works for market, and to help them build lasting careers. Sam is also the host of the podcast Agent Provocateur, giving a behind-the-scenes view into publishing and agenting. 

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  • Sandra SG Wong

    Sandra SG Wong (she/her) writes fiction across genres and is a multiple crime fiction awards nominee. A speaker, mentor, and hybrid (indie/trad) author, Sandra is Immediate Past President of Sisters in Crime and a proud member of Crime Writers of Color.

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  • Sang Kim

    Sang Kim has is an award-winning writer, restaurateur, and chef behind some of Toronto’s top Japanese and Korean brands. He is a regular food correspondent for three daytime national CTV shows. His new TV show, Searching with Chef Sang will air in the Fall of 2022 on TLN. He has been a CNE Celebrity Chef, LCBO’s Chef of the Month, ‘Chef Ambassador’ for the USDA and Republic of South Korea, and given many keynote addresses including for TEDx.

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  • Sarah Jama

    Sarah Jama is a community organizer from Hamilton, Ontario. She is co-founder of the Disability Justice Network of Ontario (DJNO) and holds a Social Sciences degree from McMaster University. Her lived experiences have fostered interests and a passion for: community engagement, disability justice, and activism.

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  • Sarah Yi-Mei Tsiang

    Sarah Yi-Mei Tsiang is the author of Status Update (2013), nominated for the Pat Lowther Award and the Gerald Lampert award winning Sweet Devilry (2011). Her new book, Grappling Hook, is forthcoming with Palimpsest Press. She is the Poetry Editor for Arc Poetry Magazine and the Creative Director of Poetry In Voice.

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  • Sarena & Sasha Nuana

    Sarena Nanua & Sasha Nanua are twin sisters living in Ontario, Canada. Born on Diwali ten minutes apart from each other, they grew up loving stories about twins and magic, and began writing books together when they were nine years old. They are graduates of the English and professional writing programs at the University of Toronto and are also the authors of the Pendant trilogy.

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  • Sean Dixon

    SEAN DIXON is a playwright, novelist and banjoist. His plays include Orphan Song and the Governor General’s Award nominated A God In Need of Help. Novels include The Girls Who Saw Everything, The Many Revenges of Kip Flynn, and the upcoming Abduction of Seven Forgers, being published next year by Freehand Books. He lives in Toronto with his wife, the multi-award-winning documentary maker Katerina Cizek, and a daughter whose brilliant, funny, stubborn character permeates his work.

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  • Shani Mootoo

    Shani Mootoo is the author of two collections of poetry, Cane | Fire, 2022 and The Predicament of Or, 2002. Author and visual artist, Mootoo’s highly acclaimed novels include Polar Vortex, shortlisted for the ScotiaBank Giller Prize. She lives in Southern Ontario, Canada.

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  • Shannon Webb-Campbell

    Shannon Webb-Campbell is a member of Qalipu Mi’kmaq First Nation. Her books include: Still No Word (Breakwater 2015), I Am A Body of Land (Book*hug 2019), and Lunar Tides (Book*hug 2022). Shannon is a doctoral student at the University of New Brunswick in the Department of English, and the editor of Visual Arts News Magazine. She lives and works in Kjipuktuk/ Halifax, Nova Scotia.

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  • Sharon Jennings

    Sharon began her career in Grade 4 when she wrote a play for the school assembly. Now she is the author of 70 books for kids, including the novel Unravel, nominated for the 2021 Governor General’s Literary Award. Her latest picture book, A Home For Us, is published this year.

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  • Sharon King

    Sharon King is an educator, performer and producer. She is Potawatomi from the Wasauksing First Nation near Parry Sound. Most recently Sharon has worked at a community level as an educator in Wasauksing. She is best known for her Juno nomination in 1999 (Aboriginal Women’s Voices, Hearts of the the Nation). She has produced community arts programs and her travels have helped with a strong connection to artists, filmmakers, and producers in Canada. Her strong hold on Indigenous culture and singing has maintained her efforts in her keeping tradition present with her family and community.

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  • Sheila Murray

    Sheila Murray’s short fiction has been published in various literary journals including Descant, The Dalhousie Review, and The New Quarterly. Finding Edward is her first novel. Murray is an advocate for social justice and climate change response and currently works as project director with CREW (Community Resilience to Extreme Weather). She was born in St. Albans, England and now lives in Hamilton, Ontario.

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  • Sifton Tracey Anipare

    Sifton Tracey Anipare is a Ghanaian Canadian writer who lived and taught in Japan for four years. She loves video games, bubble tea, and Japanese coffee mixes, and is an avid collector of stickers and stamps. Yume is her first novel.

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  • Sonya Singh

    Sonya Singh is a former entertainment reporter turned PR wizard who has followed her dream of telling stories in front of the camera and now behind the scenes. Her debut novel, Sari, Not Sari is an ode to her own personal dating experiences, during which she honed the art of writing the perfect break-up email/text.

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  • Sydney Hegele

    Sydney Hegele (formally Sydney Warner Brooman) (they/them) is the author of The Pump (Invisible Publishing 2021). They are an alumnus of the Tin House Summer Workshop (2021) and they have had work published in American Chordata, The Portland Review, and others. They live in Toronto, Canada.

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  • Tanis MacDonald

    Tanis MacDonald is a poet, nonfiction writer, and professor. Her book, Out Of Line (Wolsak and Wynn 2018), is a guide to playing the long game in the literary world, and her most recent book, Mobile (Book*hug 2019), was the only book of poetry longlisted for the 2020 Toronto Book Award.

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  • Ted Staunton

    Ted Staunton is the award-winning author of books for audiences preschool to adult. His work includes popular series, stand-alone novels, non-fiction, picture books and The Good Fight. Ted has shared his words and music all over Canada. He teaches creative writing at George Brown College.

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  • Teresa Toten

    TERESA TOTEN won the Governor General’s Literary Award in Canada for The Unlikely Hero of Room 13B, which also won the American Library Association’s Schneider Family Book Award, and was chosen by the International Board on Books for Young People as one of its Outstanding Books for Young People With Disabilities in 2015. She is the author of the international bestseller Beware that Girl and the acclaimed Blondes series, as well as The Game, The Onlyhouse, and, with Eric Walters, The Taming. Teresa lives in Toronto, Ontario.

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  • Terese Mason Pierre

    Terese Mason Pierre is a writer and editor whose work has appeared in The Walrus, ROOM, Quill & Quire, and Fantasy Magazine, among others. Her work has been nominated for the Ignyte Award, the Rhysling Award, and Best of the Net. She is the co-Editor-in-Chief of Augur Magazine, and the author of chapbooks, Surface Area (Anstruther Press, 2019) and Manifest (Gap Riot Press, 2020). Terese lives and works in Toronto, Canada.

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  • Terri Favro

    Terri Favro is a novelist and pop science writer who grew up in a family obsessed with robots and the atomic bomb. Her novel Sputnik’s Children made The Globe 100 list and the CBC Canada Reads longlist. Favro is also an award-winning ad copywriter helped sell technologies that changed the world.

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  • Terry Fan

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  • Tess Kalinowski

    Tess Kalinowski is the Toronto Star’s real estate reporter. She previously steered the transportation and education beats.

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  • Triny Finlay

    Triny Finlay is a queer poet, professor, and mother whose books include Myself a Paperclip (2021), Histories Haunt Us (2010), and Splitting Off (2004). Her most recent poetry addresses her mental illnesses, their treatments, and stigma. She lives in Fredericton, NB, where she teaches at UNB.

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  • Ursula Pflug

    Ursula Pflug’s latest books are Seeds and Other Stories (Inanna 2020) and Food of My People (Exile 2021, co-edited with Candas Jane Dorsey). Published in Canada, the US and the UK, she is a finalist for the ReLit, Aurora and KM Hunter Awards, and the Three Day Novel and Descant Novella Contests.

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  • Uzma Jalaluddin

    Uzma Jalaluddin is the bestselling author of Ayesha At Last and Hana Khan Carries On, both optioned for film. She is a contributing columnist for the Toronto Star and also a high school teacher in the GTA, where she lives with her husband and two sons.

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  • Vannessa Barnier

    Vannessa Barnier is a Toronto-based poet and community organizer. Vannessa facilitates writing workshops, hosts the open mic series, Legible Intelligibles, and is the author of SAMPLE PLATTER (Gap Riot Press, 2021).

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  • Victoria Hetherington

    Victoria Hetherington worked as a butcher and an artist’s model before graduating to writing just about anything you can imagine for money. Their debut novel, Mooncalves, was a finalist for the Amazon First Novel Award 2020. Victoria lives in Toronto.

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  • Zarqa Nawaz

    Zarqa created the series, Little Mosque on the Prairie, which premiered in 2007 to record ratings on CBC television. She’s written a best-selling memoir, Laughing All the Way to the Mosque. Both her novel Jameela Green Ruins Everything and her CBC Gem web series ZARQA, come out this spring.

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  • Zohal Aziz

    Zohal is a high school senior who loves to read and write. Always on the lookout for ways to share their passion, Zohal enjoys collaborating with others to brainstorm fun and creative stories.

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