Meet the 2019 CBC Short Story Prize readers
Every year, the CBC Literary Prizes enlists the help of established writers and editors from across the country to help us discover some of Canada's greatest writers.
Our readers compile the longlist, which is given to the jury. The jury then selects the shortlist and the eventual winner from the longlisted selections. This year's CBC Short Story Prize winner will be announced on April 24, 2019.
The winner of the CBC Short Story Prize 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 have their story published on CBC Books. Four finalists will each receive $1,000 from the Canada Council for the Arts and will have their story published on CBC Books.
Here are the 12 writers who served as readers for the 2019 CBC Short Story Prize.
Alex Boyd's novel Army of the Brave and Accidental is a retelling of The Odyssey, recently described by Canadian Notes & Queries as "timely, original and profound." His books of poems are Making Bones Walk and The Least Important Man. He helped establish Best Canadian Essays, co-editing the first two collections of work from Canadian magazines and journals. He lives in Toronto.
- Army of the Brave and Accidental named one of 24 works of Canadian fiction to watch for in the first half of 2018
Taslim Burkowicz is a writer whose ideas are inspired by both her Indo-Canadian heritage as well as her global travels and experiences. Her first novel, Chocolate Cherry Chai, was listed as one of CBC Books' 20 works of Canadian fiction we're excited to read in 2017. Her second novel, The Desirable Sister, focuses on the topic of colourism within Canadian society. It will be out in fall 2019.
Ian Colford's short fiction has appeared in Event, Grain, The Antigonish Review and other publications in print and online. He is the author of Evidence, The Crimes of Hector Tomás and Perfect World. His work has won the Margaret and John Savage First Book Award and been shortlisted for the Thomas Raddall Atlantic Fiction Award, the Relit Award, the Journey Prize and the Danuta Gleed Literary Award. He lives in Halifax.
Paige Cooper's collection of short stories, Zolitude, won the 2018 Concordia University First Book Prize, was longlisted for the Scotiabank Giller Prize, and was a finalist for the Governor General's Literary Award for fiction and the Paragraphe Hugh MacLennan Prize for fiction. CBC Books, Toronto Star, The Walrus, the Globe and Mail, The Puritan and Quill & Quire all listed it among their best books of 2018. She lives in Montreal,where she edits fiction for Cosmonauts Avenue.
Kevin A. Couture grew up in a B.C. mining town and has spent the last decade waking before dawn to write. His work has appeared in The Fiddlehead, PRISM International, The Dalhousie Review, Grain, Event, The Antigonish Review, Beloit Fiction Journal and elsewhere. He has been nominated for the Journey Prize and included in the anthology Coming Attractions. In 2016, his debut story collection, Lost Animal Club, was published with NeWest Press. Currently, he lives in Victoria with a Brittany spaniel who spectacularly defies animal training.
Harold Hoefle has published both fiction and poetry. His linked collection of short stories, The Mountain Clinic, was a finalist for the Paragraphe Hugh MacLennan Prize for fiction in 2009. In 2012, his story Ride won the Quebec Writing Competition. In 2018, The Night Chorus, his debut poetry collection, was published by McGill-Queen's University Press. His individual poems have won the Banff Centre Bliss Carman Poetry Award in 2014, the Great Blue Heron Poetry Contest, also in 2014, and a National Magazine Awards silver medal in 2016. Harold teaches English and creative writing at John Abbott College in Montreal.
Djamila Ibrahim's debut short story collection Things Are Good Now was one of Now Magazine's 10 Books To Be Excited About in 2018 and has made several CBC Books' lists of writers to watch in 2018 as well as being reviewed favourably in many other publications. Djamila's poems have appeared in PRISM International and her stories have been shortlisted for the University of Toronto's Penguin Random House Canada Student Award for Fiction and Briarpatch Magazine's creative writing contest. Djamila lives in Toronto and is currently working on a novel.
Michael Kaan published his first novel, The Water Beetles, in 2017, which received the Amazon First Novel Award and The Margaret Laurence Award for fiction and was a finalist for the Governor General's Literary Award for English-language fiction. He lives in Winnipeg and works in the healthcare industry.
- How Michael Kaan's father's memoirs about growing up during WWII in Hong Kong inspired his debut novel
Sheena Kamal's bestselling debut novel, The Lost Ones, won her a 2018 Kobo Emerging Writer Prize, a Strand Magazine Critics Award and a Macavity Award for Best First Novel. The sequel, It All Falls Down, is now available and has been called "a stunning, emotionally resonant thriller" in its Kirkus starred review. Her next thriller in the Nora Watts crime series and her first YA novel, Fight Like A Girl, are expected out in 2020. Her writing has been featured in the Guardian, Bustle, The Irish Times, Writer's Digest and Entertainment Weekly. Prior to writing novels, Kamal worked as a crime and investigative journalism researcher for the film and television industry and as a youth activist had been awarded a TD Canada Trust scholarship for community leadership around the issue of homelessness.
Igpy Kin is a writer, editor and rabblerouser. They are the writer-in-residence at Loft 112 and a wrangler of other writers in other realms. They live in Calgary with an ill-tempered cat named Frank, more books than they know what to do with and at least eight complete sets of measuring spoons, courtesy of their late grandmother's hoarding problem. They have edited over 30 chapbooks for Loft on EIGHTH micropress and can offer practical advice on the use of glitter for all occasions. Their short story Not Even a Mouse was shortlisted for the 2018 Howard O'Hagan Award for Short Story.
Kagiso Lesego Molope is the author of Dancing in the Dust, which made the 2006 IBBY Honour List, The Mending Season, now on the school curriculum in South Africa and This Book Betrays My Brother, winner of the 2014 Percy FitzPatrick Prize. Her most recent book, Such a Lonely, Lovely Road was on CBC Books' list of Best Canadian fiction for 2018. She lives in Ottawa.
Sara Tilley's work bridges writing, theatre and Pochinko clown through mask technique. She's published two award-winning novels — Skin Room and DUKE. She has written, co-written or co-created 12 plays — many of which were produced by She Said Yes!, the independent feminist theatre company which Sara ran as Artistic Director from 2002-2016. Sara is currently working on a poetic memoir centred around chronic illness, queerness, trauma and love called Heart Eyes. She lives in St. John's, N.L.