Literary Prizes

5 writers make 2019 CBC Short Story Prize shortlist

Read all five finalists' stories. The winner will be announced on April 24, 2019.
From left: David Dupont, Nada Alic, Menaka Raman-Wilms, Meg Todd and Krzysztof Pelc. (Anthony Stechyson, Andrea Nakhla, Laura Schnurr, Hilary Todd & Farwa Kazmi)

Five writers have made the 2019 CBC Short Story Prize shortlist.

The finalists are:

Each of the finalists will receive $1,000 from the Canada Council for the Arts and their stories have been published by CBC Books. You can read their stories by clicking the links above. 

The winner will be announced on April 24, 2019. The winner will receive $6,000 from the Canada Council for the Arts, attend a two-week writing residency at the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity and has had their work published by CBC Books

The shortlist was selected by the 2019 CBC Short Story Prize jury, which was comprised of Esi Edugyan, Iain Reid and Lisa Moore. The jury will also select the winner.

The longlist was compiled by a team of readers made up of writers and editors from across Canada. There were more than 3,000 English-language submissions.

Get to know the 2019 CBC Short Story Prize finalists below.

The Intruder by Nada Alic

Nada Alic is a Los Angeles-based writer originally from Toronto. (Andrea Nakhla)

About Nada: Nada Alic lives in Los Angeles by way of Toronto and writes about art, design and maintaining a creative practice. She is currently working on a collection of short fiction.

Why she wrote The Intruder: "Writing The Intruder was a way of reclaiming control by exploring the boundaries between fear and fantasy, the vulnerability of living in a woman's body and what happens in the confluence of people's loneliness, narcissism and fear in a place like Los Angeles."

For Pari by David Dupont

David Dupont is a Toronto-based writer, director and producer. (Anthony Stechyson)

About David: David Dupont spent more than 20 years working for various media as a director, writer and producer. He is currently completing a degree in creative writing at York University.

Why he wrote For Pari: "An Iranian friend once told me about an uncle who was never recovered after his incarceration."

Green Velvet by Krzysztof Pelc

Krzysztof Pelc is an author and professor of political science at McGill University in Montreal. (Laura Schnurr)

About Krzysztof: Krzysztof Pelc is a professor of political science at McGill University. Born in Warsaw, Poland, he grew up in Quebec and has lived in Montreal since 2010. He is the author of Making and Bending International Rules, a nonfiction book about the ways international law deals with unexpected events and he is completing a novel titled The Sexual Lives of Plants, about lust, language and authoritarianism.

Why he wrote Green Velvet: "I keep a file of things seen or overheard that have struck me. And every so often, I'll dip into that file to look for something to use as a kernel for writing. In this case, I'd heard a friend describe this uncanny vision from his childhood, which became the final scene in the story. I worked backwards from that to construct the rest of it, pulling from various other things that were trotting in my mind."

Black Coffee by Menaka Raman-Wilms

Menaka Raman-Wilms is a writer and journalist based in Ottawa. (Farwa Kazmi)

About Menaka: Menaka Raman-Wilms has her Master of Arts in English and creative writing from the University of Toronto and is currently completing her master's degree in Journalism at Carleton University.

Why she wrote Black Coffee: "Seeing how deeply women can be affected by the experiences of other women."

Green is the Colour of Calm by Meg Todd

Meg Todd is a Vancouver-based writer. (Hilary Todd)

About Meg: Meg Todd's work has been published in Prairie Fire, Riddle Fence, Grain, EVENT, The Humber Literary Review, The Windsor Review and elsewhere. She studied Eastern Religious Studies at the University of Calgary and creative writing at the University of British Columbia.

Why she wrote Green is the Colour of Calm: "The awareness of genetic bonds is heightened during the teenage years and I wanted to explore the dilemma these familial relationships present when abuse and dysfunction are present."

To see the finalists for the French competition, go to Les prix de la création.

Leah Mol won the 2018 CBC Short Story Prize for Lipstick Day

The CBC Literary Prizes have been recognizing Canadian writers since 1979. Past winners include Michael Ondaatje, Carol Shields, Michael Winter and Frances Itani.​