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Fort Nelson writer shortlisted for CBC literary prize

Fort Nelson author Kerissa Dickie is one of five finalists for the 2022 CBC Nonfiction Prize.
kerissa-dickie
Author and writer Kerissa Dickie of the Fort Nelson First Nation.

Update, Sept. 15:

Fort Nelson author Kerissa Dickie has made the shortlist for the 2022 CBC Nonfiction Prize.

Dickie is one of five finalists for the $6,000 grand prize award, which also comes with a writing residency at the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity.

Her story, Seh Woo, My Teeth, is an excerpt from a forthcoming memoir, according to CBC Books — “a love letter to my grandmother,” as Dickie describes it.

As a finalist, Dickie has received $1,000 from the Canada Council for the Arts, and her submitted work published on CBC Books.

A statement on the CBC Books website shares, "Kerissa Dickie is Dene from Fort Nelson First Nation, a community across the river valley from the town of Fort Nelson, B.C. Her passion for writing was stoked while helping create a book of stories by residential school survivors in her community.

"Afterwards, she immediately enrolled at the University of Victoria to continue to hone her craft. She won a national writing award just before graduating with her BFA that brought her to Ottawa.

"She saw her writing published in the anthologies Initiations: A Selection of Young Native Writings and Impact: Colonialism in Canada and in magazines and newspapers such as Beaver and Windspeaker."

Other finalists include Cayenne Bradley of Victoria, B.C., Susan Cormier of Langley, B.C., Y. S. Lee of Kingston, Ont., and Jane Ozkowski of Bloomfield, Ont.

The winner will be announced on Sept. 22. 

Click here to read Seh Woo, My Teeth.


Original story, Sept. 12:

Fort Nelson author Kerissa Dickie has made the longlist for the 2022 CBC Nonfiction Prize.

Seh Woo, My Teeth is an excerpt from a memoir Dickie is currently writing, and which she describes to the CBC as “a love letter to my grandmother.”

"As melodramatic as it sounds, I felt like I needed to create a place where my grandmother was still sitting beside me,” Dickie told CBC Books.

Dickie is among 31 Canadian writers longlisted for this year's prize, which garnered more than 1,700 submissions, and includes a cash prize of $6,000 from the Canada Council for the Arts.

The winner will have their work published on CBC Books, and also receive a two-week writing residency at Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity.

Four other finalists will receive $1,000 each from the Canada Council for the Arts, and also have their work published on CBC Books.

A shortlist will be announced Sept. 15, and the winner on Sept. 22.

Dickie grew up in the heart of the Northern Rockies in Fort Nelson First Nation at Mile 300 of the Alaska Highway. She attended the University of Victoria, where she graduated with a Bachelor of Arts, majoring in writing. 

Last year, she was one of 15 authors chosen from across Canada to join the Audible Indigenous Writers' Circle, a program that offers mentorship and guidance to emerging First Nations authors.

Click here to learn more and read an excerpt from Seh Woo, My Teeth.


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