2022 Summer Residency

Our 18th Annual Summer MFA Residency runs from July 4 to 13, 2022 in Vancouver. This year’s residency offers an intensive and provocative eight days of programming to motivate and challenge students’ writing practice, while connecting students with faculty, guest authors, and fellow students.

Anna Archer is a literary agent at Lucas Talent. She has been working on behalf of writers, directors and picture editors who work in film and television for over 15 years, representing her clients and their projects in the major entertainment industry centers in Canada and in Los Angeles. Her roster is a creative mix of established writers, story editors, picture editors and directors peppered with interesting and talented emerging writers. She is fortunate to work with some of the top creative people in Canada, working across all genres including live action drama, animation and documentary/lifestyle. Prior to moving to Vancouver, Anna worked in the publishing industry in London, England for approximately 10 years, where she was the Head of Audiobook Publishing for Penguin Books.

Billy-Ray Belcourt

Billy-Ray Belcourt is from the Driftpile Cree Nation in northwest Alberta. He lives in Vancouver, where he is an Assistant Professor in the School of Creative Writing at UBC. His books are THIS WOUND IS A WORLD, winner of the 2018 Griffin Poetry Prize, NDN COPING MECHANISMS, longlisted for Canada Reads 2020 and a Lambda Literary Award finalist, A HISTORY OF MY BRIEF BODY, a finalist for a Governor General’s Literary Award for Non-Fiction and a Lambda Literary Award, and the forthcoming A MINOR CHORUS.

Molly Cross-Blanchard is a white and Métis writer living on unceded Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh territory with her dog and sister. Molly’s debut, Exhibitionist, a collection of poetry about millennial womanhood, shame, and self love, was published in Spring 2021 with Coach House Books. 

Sara Graefe is a playwright, screenwriter and essayist. Her plays, which include Sadly As I Tie My Shoes, Dreamspyre and Yellow on Thursdays, have been produced as far afield as Ottawa’s National Arts Centre, Yukon’s Nakai Theatre, the Sydney Opera House, and the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. She was a screenwriter-in-residence at Norman Jewison’s Canadian Film Centre in Toronto and has worked for many years as a screenwriter and story editor in the BC film industry. Highlights include a five-season stint in the writing room of Edgemont, CBC-TV’s Gemini and Leo award-winning teen series, and her ongoing role as story editor for the Crazy8s short filmmaking challenge. Sara is editor of the CNF collection Swelling with Pride: Queer Conception and Adoption Stories (2018, Dagger Editions/Caitlin Press), selected for the 2020 Over the Rainbow Longlist by the GLBT roundtable of the American Library Association.

Hiromi Goto is an emigrant from Japan who gratefully resides in Lekwungen Territory. Her first novel, Chorus of Mushrooms, was the 1995 Commonwealth Writers’ Prize Best First Book, Canada and Caribbean Region, and co-winner of the Canada-Japan Book Award. Her second book, The Kappa Child, received the 2001 James Tiptree Jr. Memorial Award (now known as the Otherwise Award). She’s published three novels for children and youth, a book of poetry, and a collection of short stories. Her other honours include The Sunburst Award and the Carl Brandon Parallax Award. Her first graphic novel, Shadow Life, with artist Ann Xu, was published in March of 2021 with First Second Books. Hiromi is currently at work trying to decolonize her relationship to writing and the land..

Jennica Harper is Showrunner and Co-creator of the comedy series JANN, currently airing on Hulu in the U.S. and CTV/Crave in Canada. Jennica has been a writer-producer on numerous TV series including the adventure drama SkyMed (Paramount Plus/CBC), The Order (Netflix), Cardinal (Hulu/CTV), Motive (CTV), and multi-cam comedies Some Assembly Required (Netflix/YTV) and Mr. Young (Disney/YTV). She has won two WGC Awards and been nominated for multiple Canadian Screen Awards. Jennica is also a poet – her fourth book, Bounce House, was published by Anvil Press in 2019, and her book Wood (Anvil Press, 2013) was nominated for the Dorothy Livesay Award. Jennica’s suite of poems about Sally Draper combined her love of TV and poetry, and went (a little) viral.

A.W. Hopkins is a writer/director and a proud member of the N’Quatqua First Nation. In 2020, A.W completed work on his first feature film, Indian Road Trip. This film is now in rotation on APTN and available on the streaming service LUMI. A.W. has won numerous awards for Indian Road Trip including Best BC Director at the 2020 Whistler Film Festival. In addition, A.W. wrote and directed the short film Shin-chi’s Canoe which premiered at the 2018 ImagineNative Film Festival in Toronto. It has screened at numerous film festivals nationally and internationally and was featured in the 2019 Short Film Corner at the Marché du Film-Festival de Cannes. In 2020, A.W. completed the Directors Lab in the Norman Jewison Film Program at the Canadian Film Centre where he shot the short film FlyPaper. A.W. lives in Vancouver BC on the traditional and unceded territory of the Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish), Stó:lō and Səl̓ílwətaʔ/Selilwitulh (Tsleil-Waututh) and xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam) Nations.

Anosh Irani is a three-time Governor General’s Literary Award-shortlisted author and playwright, and a two-time winner of the Dora Mavor Moore Award for Outstanding New Play.  His novel, The Parcel, was a finalist for the Governor General’s Literary Award, the Rogers Writers’ Trust Fiction Prize, and the Ethel Wilson Fiction Prize, and was chosen as one of the Best Books of the Year by the Globe and Mail, Quill & Quire, National Post, CBC Books and The Walrus. The screenplay of The Parcel has been optioned by Blonde to Black Pictures, UK.  His latest collection of stories, Translated from the Gibberish: Seven Stories and One Half Truth, was published by Knopf.

Todd Ireland is a Métis screenwriter based in Vancouver. He has written for TV shows such as ReBoot:The Guardian Code and Continuum. He is an alumni of the Writers Guild of Canada Diverse Screenwriters Program and the Pacific Screenwriting Program. He is currently Executive Vice President at Enderby Entertainment Canada

Conor Kerr is a Métis/Ukrainian writer and a graduate of the UBC MFA program. A member of the Métis Nation of Alberta, he is descended from the Lac Ste. Anne Metis and the Papaschase Cree Nation. His Ukrainian family are settlers in Treaty 4 and 6 territories in Saskatchewan. His writing has been rejected by many literary publications, including The New Yorker and The Paris Review

Lydia Kwa lives and works on traditional and unceded territories of the Coast Salish peoples. She has published four novels, two books of poetry and two chapbooks; she has exhibited her visual art at Centre A and Massy Art Gallery. She is also a psychologist in private practice.

Julia Kwan, a writer and director living in Vancouver, was a director resident at the Canadian Film Centre, where she made her award winning short drama, Three Sisters on Moon Lake. Ms. Kwan’s feature film debut, Eve & the Fire Horse, had its international premiere at The Sundance Film Festival, where it won the Special Jury Prize for Dramatic World Cinema and screened at over 30 film festivals. Since then, Ms. Kwan has written and directed numerous short and feature length films in different genres (drama, documentary, and/or animation) over the years, including the NFB’s Everything Will Be, her award winning debut feature documentary and The Zoo, an animated short film. Ms. Kwan is developing her first animated feature film, The Appendix and the Soulful Thing

Tanya Kyi

Tanya Kyi is the author of more than 30 picture books, novels, and information books for children and young adults. She often writes about science, history, pop culture, or a combination of the three. Her recent works include Me and Banksy, Mya’s Strategy to Save the World, and This Is Your Brain on Stereotypes, which Kirkus Reviews called “a must-read primer for change.” Tanya is a past winner of a B.C. Book Prize, a Science in Society Book Award, a Hackmatack Children’s Choice Award, an Information Book Award, and a Montaigne Medal. Her books are available in more than a dozen countries and have been translated into French, Spanish, German, Finnish, Korean, and Chinese.

Vancouver’s 6th Poet Laureate, Fiona Tinwei Lam has published three collections of poetry and a children’s book. Her poems have been featured in Best Canadian Poetry and thrice with BC’s Poetry in Transit, as well as in award-winning poetry videos made in collaboration with filmmakers that have screened worldwide. She edited of The Bright Well: Contemporary Canadian Poems about Facing Cancer, and co-edited two nonfiction anthologies. Shortlisted for the City of Vancouver Book Prize and other awards, her work has been included in over 40 anthologies. 

 Doretta Lau started watching horror movies at age nine and sketch comedy at eleven, which was probably why she ended up completing an MFA in Writing at Columbia University. The Atlantic named her short story collection, How Does a Single Blade of Grass Thank the Sun?, as a best book of 2014. The title story, about a group of kids determined to pull off a heist, was shortlisted for the 2013 Writers’ Trust McClelland & Stewart Journey Prize. Her forthcoming novel We Are Underlings is about a dysfunctional workplace struggling to open a theme park that celebrates death. Visit dorettalau.com.

Rachel Letofsky is an agent at CookeMcDermid. She specializes in children’s literature (middle-grade and YA with some picture books), literary fiction, historical fiction, narrative-driven memoir and quirky non-fiction for adults. Her clients include National and International bestsellers, and nominees and winners for awards such as the Kirkus Prize, the Scotiabank Giller Prize, the Governor General’s Awards, the Trillium awards, the OLA’s Forest of Tree Awards, the BC Book Awards, CBC’s Canada Reads, the Sunburst Award, the Canadian Jewish Literary award, the Lambda Literary Awards, and the Rogers Writers’ Trust Awards. She frequently acts as a judge for writing competitions, and travels throughout North America to writers’ festivals and literary events.

A transplanted Canadian, Rachel moved to Oregon in 2017. When not travelling or reading, Rachel loves spending time with her family, cooking, gardening, planning for the upcoming alien/zombie invasion, and swimming in lakes and oceans as much as possible. Twitter @rachelletofsky.

Amanda Lewis spent fourteen years in the world’s top publishing houses, acquiring and editing fiction and non-fiction for change-makers and thought leaders. Books she edits regularly hit #1 on bestseller lists and win major awards. She was an editor and managing editor at Penguin Random House in Toronto, and inaugural editorial director at Page Two in Vancouver. She’s one of the few editors who understands the intricacies of traditional and hybrid publishing. Now, as a freelance editor, she works with artists and environmentalists to shape their big ideas and publish their books. Amanda is also a writer, and her first book, Tracking Giants, a travel memoir about searching for the largest trees in BC, will be published in spring 2023 (Greystone Books). Born in Dublin, Amanda now divides her time between the internet and a small island on the West Coast of Canada.

Annabel Lyon is the author of several books of fiction and non-fiction for adults and young people. Her most recent novel, Consent, was longlisted for the Scotiabank Giller Prize and the Women’s Prize for Fiction. She is the Director of the UBC School of Creative Writing.

Michele McMahon has over 15 years’ experience producing award-winning Canadian television. She was a Production Executive for Bell Media for seven years where she was the executive on the drama series: Transplant (CTV, NBC, SKY), Cardinal (CTV, BBC2), 19-2 (BRAVO) and Motive (CTV, ABC).

In 2022 and 2021Transplant garnered multiple Canadian Screen Awards (CSAs) for best drama, best writing, best direction, and best lead actor and actress. It was also honoured by The Muslim Public Affairs Council of Hollywood Media Awards that celebrates members of the entertainment industry who promote inclusion and social justice. Cardinal won CSAs (2019) for best drama series, best writing, best direction, best male lead, best female lead, best editing.  19-2 won CSAs (2018/19) for best drama, best writing, best direction, and best male lead. It was also nominated for an International Emmy at the 44th Emmys.

Prior to joining Bell Media, Michele McMahon spent nine years with Omnifilm Entertainment as Director of Drama Development. There, she developed the dramas: Primeval: New World (Space, Syfy, ITV, ProSieben) and Arctic Air (CBC).

Roslyn Muir is an author and award-winning film & TV writer of dramas and thrillers. She wrote for the Global/CBS one-hour drama, Ransom, created by Frank Spotnitz (Man in the High Castle). Roslyn has also written several TV movies that have aired around the world: Washed Away, Stranger in the House, and Reluctant Witness to name a few. Roslyn wrote and produced the dramatic feature film, The Birdwatcher, available on Amazon Prime. The Chimera’s Apprentice, a middle-grade fantasy, is her debut novel and book one in the series; book two, The Stone Traveller, launches in Spring 2022. Her screenwriting book, Writing a TV Movie: An Insider’s Guide to Launching a Screenwriting Career, was published by Three Ocean Press, 2021. She teaches at the UBC School of Creative Writing.

Christina Myers is a writer, editor, and former journalist. Her novel, The List of Last Chances (2021), was recently longlisted for the Leacock Medal literary award (winner to be announced in fall 2022) and shortlisted for the Fred Kerner book award. She was the editor of the IPPY award-winning anthology BIG: Stories about Life in Plus-Sized Bodies. She teaches an intro course to creative non-fiction at SFU’s continuing studies creative writing department, and will be teaching a fiction course there starting in October. She is currently at work on her next novel as well as an essay collection, from her home on the west coast of Canada.

Noor Naga is an Alexandrian writer who was born in Philadelphia, raised in Dubai, studied in Toronto, and now lives in Cairo. She is winner of the Bronwen Wallace Award, the RBC/PEN Canada Award, and the Disquiet Fiction Prize, and her work has been published in GrantaPOETRYThe WalrusThe Common, and more. Her verse-novel Washes, Prays, which won the Pat Lowther Memorial Award and an Arab American Book Award, was published by McClelland & Stewart in 2020. Her debut novel If an Egyptian Cannot Speak English won the Graywolf Press Africa Prize and is forthcoming in April 2022 from Graywolf Press.

Hazel Jane Plante is a librarian, coastal creature, and writer. Her debut novel Little Blue Encyclopedia (for Vivian) (Metonymy Press, 2019) was given a Lambda Literary award. Her next novel, Any Other City, is forthcoming with Arsenal Pulp Press in spring 2023.

Danny Ramadan (He/Him) is a Syrian-Canadian author, public speaker and adovate for LGBTQ+ refugees. His debut novel, The Clothesline Swing, was shortlisted for the Lambda Literary Award, longlisted for Canada Reads, and named a Best Book of the Year by the Globe and Mail and Toronto Star. His children’s book, Salma the Syrian Chef, won the Nautilus Book Award, The Middle East Book Award, and was named a Best Book by both Kirkus and School Library Journal.

Ramadan’s forthcoming novel, The Foghorn Echoes (2022), and his memoir, Crooked Teeth (2024), are to be released by Penguin Random House. Through his fundraising efforts, Ramadan raised over $250,000 for Syrian LGBTQ+ identifying refugees. He has an MFA in Creative Writing from UBC and currently lives in Vancouver with his husband.

Jordan Scott is a poet and children’s author. His debut children’s book, I Talk Like a River (illustrated by Sydney Smith), was a New York Times best Children’s Book of 2020. I Talk Like a River is translated into nineteen languages and was the recipient of the American Library Association’s, Schneider Family Book Award, which honors authors for the artistic expression of the disability experience. I Talk Like a River has won numerous international awards and was nominated for the BC and Yukon Book Prize and Governor General’s Literary Prize for Young People’s Literature. Scott is also the author of four books of poetry and the recipient of the Latner Writers’ Trust Poetry Prize, given to a mid-career poet in recognition of a remarkable body of work, and in anticipation of future contributions to Canadian poetry.

jaye simpson is an Oji-Cree Saulteaux Indigiqueer from the Sapotaweyak Cree Nation. simpson is a writer, advocate and activist sharing their knowledge and lived experiences in hope of creating utopia.

they are published in several magazines including Poetry Is Dead, This Magazine, PRISM international,  SAD Magazine: Green, GUTS Magazine, SubTerrain, Grain and Room. They are in four anthologies: Hustling Verse (2019), Love After the End (2020), The Care We Dream Of (2021), and the forthcoming Queer Little Nightmares (2022). Their first poetry collection, it was never going to be okay (Nightwood Ed.) was shortlisted for the 2021 ReLit Award and a 2021 Dayne Ogilvie Prize Finalist while also winning the 2021 Indigenous Voices Award for Published Poetry in English.

they are a displaced Indigenous person resisting, ruminating and residing on xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), səl̓ilwətaɁɬ (Tsleil-waututh), and sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish) First Nations territories, colonially known as Vancouver.

Anne Stone’s most recent novel, Girl Minus X (Wolsak & Wynn, 2020) tells the story of Dany, a girl with an eidetic memory and a traumatic past who must navigate a world in which a slow creeping virus erodes memory. In a starred review, Publishers Weekly called the novel “brilliant, breathless….” She’s currently finishing up a collection of short stories that exists at the uneasy verge of realism. Troubling a simple approach to representations of violence and trauma, these stories cross boundaries between the literary, the speculative, the uncanny, and body horror, confounding separations between a singular identity and a plurality of selves.

Deborah Sun De La Cruz is a Senior Editor at Penguin Canada where she acquires literary and commercial fiction. Recent publications include the #1 bestseller Every Summer After by Carley Fortune and the Women’s Prize winner The Book of Form and Emptiness by Ruth Ozeki. She works with acclaimed international authors Celeste Ng, Gail Honeyman, Sophie Mackintosh, and K-Ming Chang. Forthcoming titles include Tell Me Pleasant Things about Immortality by Lindsay Wong, River Mumma by Zalika Reid-Benta, Almost Brown by Charlotte Gill, and Batshit Seven by Sheung-King.


Bronwen Tate is the author of the poetry collection The Silk the Moths Ignore (Inlandia Institute 2021), National Winner of the Hillary Gravendyk Prize. Midwinter Constellation, a poetry collaboration, is forthcoming from Black Lawrence Press. A citizen of the Chickasaw Nation, Bronwen earned an MFA in Literary Arts from Brown University and a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature from Stanford University. Her poems and essays have appeared in publications including CV2Bennington ReviewThe Rumpus and Contemporary Literature. After completing a Postdoc as a Thinking Matters Fellow at Stanford, Bronwen taught creative writing and literature at Marlboro College in Vermont before coming to UBC. Her work has been supported by Stanford’s DARE (Diversifying Academia Recruiting Excellence) Dissertation Fellowship, as well as by fellowships from the Stanford Humanities Center and Vermont Studio Center.

Isabella Wang is the author of the chapbook, On Forgetting a Language, and her full-length debut, Pebble Swing, currently shortlisted for the Dorothy Livesay Poetry Prize. Among other recognitions, she has been shortlisted for Arc’s Poem of the Year Contest, The Malahat Review’s Far Horizons Contest and Long Poem Contest, and was the youngest writer to be shortlisted twice for The New Quarterly’s Edna Staebler Essay Contest. Her poetry and prose have appeared in over thirty literary journals and three anthologies. She is completing a double-major in English and World Literature at SFU. She is also a youth mentor with Vancouver Poetry House, and an Editor at Room magazine.

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