We’re very happy to share with you the winners and finalists of the 15th Annual Great Canadian Literary Hunt, all of which you’ll be able to read on the website starting tomorrow. Third-place finalists will be online on Wednesday, second-place finalists on Thursday, and the winners on Friday.
In the poetry category, Frances Boyle won for her poem “Wake,” Anna Keefe took second with “Long Week,” and Joanne Osborne-Paulson was third with “I was born without a mouth.”
In the fiction category, Andrew Shenkman took first place with “Salt Water,” Robin Evans placed second with “A Cure for What Ails You,” and Frances Boyle, above, joined the finalists’ circle again with her third-place poem, “Rest Cure.” (We believe this is the first time in Lit Hunt history that a writer has placed in the top three in two categories.)
And in the Graphic Narrative category, the judges opted to name just a single winner, Selena Wong, for “Criss Cross.”
Here are the complete bios for each of the finalists. Congratulations to them all! We’re thrilled to be publishing their work.
Frances Boyle’s poetry and fiction have appeared across Canada and in the U.S. in anthologies and literary magazines including The Fiddlehead, Room and Contemporary Verse 2, and as a LeafPress.ca “Monday’s poem”. Previous poetry awards include Arc’s Diana Brebner Prize, and second place in Prairie Fire’s Banff Centre Bliss Carmen Award. Happily making her home in Ottawa for the past 16 years, Frances still continues to draw on her strong ties to Regina and Vancouver.
Anna Keefe has a Bachelor’s of Philosophy in Interdisciplinary Leadership Studies from the University of New Brunswick and a Master’s in Arts in Education from the Harvard Graduate School of Education. She is thankful to all the people of the world who make it irresistible to write about. This is her first poetry publication.
“I was born without a mouth”
Joanne Osborne-Paulson holds a BA Special with Distinction (in English) from the University of Alberta. She is an associate member of the League of Canadian Poets. Joanne lives and writes in St. Albert, Alberta.
Andrew Shenkman is recent graduate of the University of Toronto at Scarborough living in Toronto. He writes stories and music for himself and others and plays in a band called Crowns for Convoy.
“A Cure for What Ails You”
Robin Evans lives in Vancouver. Her stories have appeared in subTERRAIN, The Danforth Review, the anthology Lust for Life (Vehicule Press) and a few other places. She’s a graduate of The Writers Studio at Simon Fraser University and is working on her first novel. She blogs sporadically at robinevans.org.
Frances Boyle (See 1st place poetry winner, above)
Selena Wong is an illustrator and artist living in Toronto with her Netherland Dwarf Rabbit. Like the condensed urban environment of her place of birth, Selena’s work reflects the petite surroundings, the places tucked away and removed from reality. She is currently working on an illustrated story involving rabbits and trains. View her other works at selenawong.com.
We’d like to express our tremendous gratitude to the volunteers who helped make the Lit Hunt happen this year. Extra-special thank yous to screeners Dani Couture, Stuart Ross, Alana Wilcox, Ashley Winnington-Ball, and organizers Hilary Beaumont and Peter Goffin.
Meet the judges
As always, we’d like to extend a big thanks to the judges who presided over the contest this year. We couldn’t possibly do it without their help.
Peter Darbyshire is the author of The Warhol Gang and Please, which won the ReLit Award. Follow him online at peterdarbyshire.com and all the other usual places.
Andrew Hood’s first collection of short stories, Pardon Our Monsters, won the 2008 Danuta Gleed Award. His second collection, The Cloaca, will be published by Invisible Publishing in Spring 2012. He works at the Garrison Brewery in Halifax.
Michael Blouin’s critically acclaimed first novel Chase and Haven (Coach House) was a finalist for the Amazon.ca First Novel Award and won the 2009 ReLit Award. His collection of poetry, I’m not going to lie to you was published by Pedlar Press. He was a finalist for the 2010 CBC Literary Awards and in 2011 Pedlar Press released Wore Down Trust, which has garnered excellent national and international reviews. He is currently completing his second novel and is represented by Westwood Creative Artists. His website is minor-poet.blogspot.com.
Jason Heroux lives in Kingston, Ontario. He is the author of two poetry collections, Memoirs of an Alias (Mansfield Press, 2004) and Emergency Hallelujah (Mansfield Press, 2008). His novella Good Evening, Central Laundromat (Quattro Books, 2010) was shortlisted for the 2011 ReLit Awards.
Jeff Latosik’s recent book Tiny, Frantic, Stronger won the Trillium award for poetry. He lives in Toronto.
Gillian Sze recently published her second book, The Anatomy of Clay (ECW Press, Spring 2011). Her debut poetry collection, Fish Bones (DC Books, 2009), was shortlisted for the 2009 QWF McAuslan First Book Prize. She co-edits Branch Magazine and teaches creative writing to at-risk teens. Gillian has a Master’s degree in Creative Writing from Concordia University and is currently pursuing a PhD at Université de Montréal. Her website is gilliansze.com
Scott Chantler is the acclaimed cartoonist of the Eisner-nominated graphic novel Two Generals and the Shuster Award-winning children’s series Three Thieves. He is also a popular commercial illustrator whose clients have included McDonald’s, Reebok, Macy’s, Rogers, the New York Daily News, the National Post, the Toronto Star, and Maclean’s. When he’s not doing either of those things, he teaches Writing for Graphic Novels at Max the Mutt Animation School in Toronto.
Fiona Smyth is a Toronto based painter, illustrator, and cartoonist. She is currently producing two art projects funded by the Toronto and Ontario arts councils, and teaches illustration and comics at OCADU. Fiona’s first graphic novel, The Never Weres, was published by Annick Press in 2011. Her website is thewilding.blogspot.com.
Zach Worton was born in the wide-open expanses of Saskatchewan in the late ’70’s where he learned how to draw by copying Peanuts comics from the newspaper. His debut graphic novel, The Klondike, was published by Drawn & Quarterly and released in the spring of 2011.