April 30, 2018
2018 WGA Golden Pen Award
The Writers’ Guild of Alberta Golden Pen Award is presented to acknowledge the lifetime achievements of outstanding Alberta writers. Past recipients are W.O. Mitchell, Grant MacEwan, Rudy Wiebe, Myrna Kostash, Robert Kroetsch, Merna Summers, Aritha van Herk, Fred Stenson, George Melnyk, Alice Major, Betty Jane Hegerat, Greg Hollingshead and Candas Jane Dorsey.
This year’s recipient is Cecelia Frey.
Cecelia Frey is the author of seven novels, three collections of short stories, and six volumes of poetry. Her latest books are a novel, Lovers Fall Back to Earth (2018), and a collection of poems, North (2018). For many years, she instructed in writing workshops and classes, worked at editing and freelance writing and was active in the Calgary writing community where she lives with her family.
Born in northern Alberta, Cecelia grew up in Edmonton and was educated at the University of Alberta and the University of Calgary. Her novel A Raw Mix of Carelessness and Longing was shortlisted for the WGA George Bugnet Fiction Award and she is a three-time recipient of the WGA Howard O’Hagan Award for Short Fiction. She has also won awards for playwriting. Her work has appeared in such publications as the Globe and Mail, Westworld and Canadian Literature, numerous literary journals and anthologies, and has been broadcast on CBC Radio and the Women’s Television Network. In 2016 she began a blog, The Writing Life.
A prolific and expansively creative writer who has produced work in multiple genres, Cecelia has also long been a teacher, mentor, friend and example to many writers. “Get out into the literary community, make friends with other writers; you need each other’s support,” Frey said in a 2016 WestWord magazine profile. One of her nominators for the Golden Pen Award put it this way: “As an aspiring writer in 1970s Calgary, she found literary community and made friends with her fellow writers. In 2017, she continues to do so. Alberta’s literary culture is the stronger for it.”
The Golden Pen Award is supported by Aritha van Herk
The Golden Pen Award will be presented at the Alberta Literary Awards Gala on Saturday, June 2 in Calgary. Awards will be given in eight other categories, as well. Admissions for the Awards Gala can be purchased here.