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Writers' Trust of Canada selects 3 emerging Canadian writers for mentorship program

Simone Dalton, Emily Pegg and Emily Riddle have been selected by Writers' Trust of Canada to be mentored by Canadian authors Jenny Heijun Wills, Pasha Malla and Joshua Whitehead.

Selected writers include Simone Dalton, Emily Pegg and Emily Riddle

Emerging Canadian writers Simone Dalton, Emily Pegg and Emily Riddle are the recipients of the Writers' Trust mentorship program. (Setti Kidane, Submitted by Emily Pegg, Conor McNally/CBC)

Canadian writers Simone Dalton, Emily Pegg and Emily Riddle have each been selected for The Writers' Trust of Canada mentorship program.

The program supports developing artists working in the categories of fiction, poetry and literary nonfiction. 

The mentees will each receive $2,500 to help finance time to write during the five-month remote project.

The selected mentees are each paired with established literary practitioners, who will guide them through one-on-one instruction.

Dalton is the mentorship recipient for the literary nonfiction category. 

Born and raised in Trinidad and Tobago, Dalton is an author, creative writing instructor, and was the recipient of the 2020 RBC Taylor Emerging Writer Award for nonfiction

She holds an MFA from the University of Guelph. Her work includes Watch Your Head, Black Writers Matter and The Unpublished City: Volume I. Her essay, Wait of Grief, was longlisted for Room Magazine's creative nonfiction prize in 2020.

Dalton is paired with Jenny Heijun Wills, the author of the memoir Older Sisters. Not Necessarily Related. The book won the 2019 Hilary Weston Writers' Trust Prize for Nonfiction.

"Simone Dalton's work is a reflection of remarkable literary talent, political acumen and skilful revelation," Wills said in a statement.

Vancouver-based Pegg has been selected in the fiction category. 

Her short fiction has appeared in publications such as Funicular Magazine, Iron Horse Literary Review and PRISM International.

Pegg will be mentored by Pasha Malla, the author of Kill the Mall and The Withdrawal Method.

Malla said in a statement that he wants to work with Pegg because of her "balance of humility, intelligence, and enthusiasm."

Riddle is the mentorship recipient for the poetry category. 

Riddle is Nehiyaw and a member of the Alexander First Nation currently living in Edmonton. She is a public library worker, researcher and writer. 

Her work has been published in the Globe and Mail, Teen Vogue and Room Magazine. She was shortlisted for the 2020 CBC Poetry Prize

Riddle is paired with Joshua Whitehead, the author of the novel Jonny AppleseedJonny Appleseed won Canada Reads 2021, when it was championed by actor Devery Jacobs.

"She animates the land as a being too, allowing it to speak, and never forgoes its desires," Whitehead said in a statement.

"I was immediately brought home into the roaming prairies, the vastness of our river systems, the breadth of kin we are in relations with upon opening her manuscript."

The Writers' Trust of Canada is a charitable organization that seeks to advance, nurture and celebrate Canadian writers and writing through programs including awards, fellowship and mentorship opportunities. 

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