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Meet the 2017 Mentorship Program Participants!

On January 9, six Alberta writers began their participation in the the WGA’s annual mentorship program. 2017 marks the sixth straight year for the program, which sees emerging writers paired up with established Alberta authors to develop the emerging writer’s literary work, and to also  provide support and encouragement.

This year: 

  • Marco Melfi will work with mentor Vivian Hansen on poetry 
  • Sherryl Melnyk will work with mentor Julie Sedivy on creative nonfiction 
  • Jacqueline Kwan will work with mentor J. Jill Robinson on fiction
The mentorship program runs for four months. A celebration of this program, complete with the emerging writers reading from their work, will be held in early May. Congratulations and all good wishes to all the participants!


The 2017 Mentorship Program Participants

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Click on the tabs to meet the participants of the 2017 Mentorship Program!


[/tab][tab title=”Vivian Hansen”]


Vivian Hansen (Mentor) has published nonfiction, fiction, and poetry.  A Bitter Mood of Clouds (Frontenac House 2013) and Leylines of My Flesh (Touchwood 2002) are her first full-length poetry collections. She has two chapbooks: Angel Alley: the victims of Jack the Ripper and Never Call It Bird: the Melodies of AIDS. Vivian teaches creative writing, and has an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of British Columbia. She teaches in the Creative Writing Certificate Program with the University of Calgary, and with Alexandra Writers’ Centre. Her third full-length poetry collection, A Tincture of Sunlight (Frontenac House) in forthcoming in 2017.


[/tab][tab title=”Jacqueline Kwan “]

Jacqueline Kwan (Apprentice) is a short fiction writer from Calgary who has been reading and studying the craft of writing for many years. Her first story “In the Skin of Grapes” was published in a student literary journal at the University of Alberta where she also studied business, English, and creative writing. She has written numerous short stories, poems, plays, and essays over the years, and continues to develop her voice as a young writer through workshops, courses, and self-study.






[/tab][tab title=”Marco Melfi”]


Marco Melfi (Apprentice) is an Edmonton poet originally from Hamilton. He has had poems published in The Prairie Journal, FreeFall Magazine, the Edmonton Poetry Festival’s Poetry Route and 40 Below: Volume 2. His chapbook, In between trains, was published in 2014 and the recipient of the Sharon Drummond Chapbook Award.




[/tab][tab title=”Sherryl Melnyk”]


Sherryl Melnyk (Apprentice) has a Bachelor of Arts degree and a Master of Arts degree in English Literature. Her Interdisciplinary doctorate combined playwriting with social science research. She has been an instructor at postsecondary institutions for the last 13 years. She currently teaches courses through the School of Creative & Performing Arts at the University of Calgary. Her plays have won awards and been produced across Canada.  She has presented at conferences nationally and internationally. She is currently working on a creative nonfiction memoir.

[/tab][tab title=”J. Jill Robinson”]

photo-j-jill-robinson-colourJill Robinson (Mentor) is the author of one novel, More In Anger (Thomas Allen 2012), and four collections of short stories. Her fiction and creative nonfiction have been anthologized, and have appeared in many literary journals. Her awards include two Western Magazine Awards, two Saskatchewan Book Awards, two prizes for creative nonfiction from Event magazine, the PRISM International fiction contest, and the Howard O’Hagan Award for Short Fiction. She holds an M.F.A. in creative writing from the University of Alaska in Fairbanks, and an M.A. in English Literature from the University of Calgary.




[/tab][tab title=”Julie Sedivy”]


Julie Sedivy (Mentor) has spent more than 20 years as a language scientist, and is currently an adjunct faculty member at the University of Calgary and a writer of nonfiction. She has written for publications such as Nautilus, Scientific American, Discover, and Politico. She has published two books, including Sold on Language: How Advertisers Talk to You and What This Says About You, and is currently co-editing, together with Rona Altrows, a volume of essays on the theme of waiting. She is also at work on a new book about language loss and reclamation that blends memoir and science writing.






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