Meet the 2020 CBC Short Story Prize Readers
Every year, CBC Books enlists the help of established writers and editors from across Canada to read the thousands of entries submitted to our prizes.
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. The 2020 CBC Short Story Prize winner will be announced on April 22, 2020.
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 work published on CBC Books. Four finalists will each receive $1,000 from the Canada Council for the Arts and will have their work published on CBC Books.
Here are the 10 writers who served as readers for the 2020 CBC Short Story Prize.
Eva Crocker is a freelance writer based in St. John's. Her nonfiction work has appeared in Maisonneuve Magazine, Border Crossings Magazine, Hamilton Review of Books and Atlantic Books Today. Her short story collection Barrelling Forward was a finalist for the Dayne Ogilvie Prize for Emerging LGBTQ Authors. The collection won the Canadian Authors' Association Emerging Writer's Award and the Alistair MacLeod Award for short fiction. Her debut novel, All I Ask, will be published by House of Anansi Press in June 2020.
Tyler Hellard grew up in Prince Edward Island, graduated from St. Francis Xavier University and now lives in Calgary with his wife and kids, where he writes commercial copy, technology criticism and essays. His debut novel, Searching For Terry Punchout, was a finalist for the 2019 Amazon Canada First Novel Award and the Kobo Emerging Writer Prize. His nonfiction has appeared in This Magazine, The Walrus and on CBC Radio. He's currently working on a book of essays about professional wrestling.
Philip Huynh is the author of The Forbidden Purple City, a collection of short stories about the Vietnamese diaspora. A graduate of the University of British Columbia, Huynh is also a practicing lawyer. Huynh's stories have been widely published in literary journals and have also been published in two editions of the Journey Prize anthology and cited for distinction in The Best American Stories. He lives in Richmond, B.C., with his wife and twin daughters.
Aaron Kreuter is the author of the short story collection You and Me, Belonging and the poetry collection Arguments for Lawn Chairs. You and Me, Belonging won The Miramichi Reader's 2019 "The Very Best Of!" award for short fiction, and was shortlisted for a Vine Award for Jewish Literature in the fiction category. His fiction, poetry and nonfiction has appeared in publications such as This Magazine, The Puritan, Grain, The Temz Review and numerous anthologies. He lives in Toronto, where he is currently working on a novel that takes place at Jewish sleepover camp.
Shani Mootoo is a novelist, poet and visual artist. Her novels include Moving Forward Sideways Like a Crab, which was longlisted for the Scotiabank Giller Prize and shortlisted for a Lambda Literary Award, Valmiki's Daughter, which was longlisted for the Scotiabank Giller Prize, He Drown She in the Sea, which was longlisted for the Dublin Impac Award, and Cereus Blooms at Night, which was shortlisted for the Scotiabank Giller Prize and longlisted for the Man Booker Prize. She is also a recipient of a Chalmers Arts Fellowship and the Dr. James Duggins Outstanding Mid-Career Novelist Prize. Her latest novel is called Polar Vortex.
C.L. Polk lives near the Bow River in Calgary, in a tiny apartment with too many books and a yarn stash that could last a decade. She appreciates good coffee, slow bicycles, and a shuffled playlist. Her debut novel Witchmark, was the 2019 winner of the World Fantasy Award. CBC Books named Polk a writer to watch in 2019.
Corey Redekop is author of the novels Shelf Monkey and Husk. His short stories may be found in many Canadian anthologies including Those Who Make Us, Superhero Universe and most recently, We Shall Be Monsters. His untitled third novel is coming along nicely or terribly, depending on what time of day you ask him about it.
Zalika Reid-Benta is a Toronto-based writer whose debut short story collection Frying Plantain has been on numerous "must read" lists from Bustle, Chatelaine Magazine, Toronto Star, Globe and Mail and more. Frying Plantain was on the 2019 Scotiabank Giller Prize longlist. She was the June 2019 writer in residence for Open Book and was named one of the six black Canadian writers to watch in 2019. In 2011, George Elliott Clarke recommended her as a "writer to watch." Her work has appeared on Town Crier and in Apogee Journal. She received an MFA. in fiction from Columbia University and is an alumnus of the Banff Writing Studio.
- Why Zalika Reid-Benta wrote a short story collection that looks at growing up young and black in Toronto
Michael V. Smith
Michael V. Smith is a writer, performer, and filmmaker. He teaches in the interdisciplinary faculty of creative and critical studies at University of British Columbia's Okanagan campus in Kelowna, B.C. His most recent book is the collection of poetry, Bad Ideas.
A former journalist and current pediatrician, Bindu Suresh is the author of the novel 26 Knots, as well as of short stories that have appeared in various literary publications. She studied literature at Columbia University and medicine at McGill University. Born in Wales, she grew up in Canada and has spent equal parts of her life in Saskatchewan, Alberta, Ontario and Quebec. She currently lives in Montreal.