Kelowna alumna wins national award
Susan Cormier, who received her degree in Literature from Okanagan University College-UBC, has been awarded one of the most prestigious short-form writing awards in Canada: CBC Nonfiction Prize. Her lyric essay, Advice to a New Beekeeper, was selected from over 1,700 entries. Susan attended UBC-O, then called Okanagan University College-UBC, in the mid-‘90s At the Salmon Arm campus, professor Les Ellenor encouraged her love of creative writing; she then transferred to the Kelowna campus to study literature and writing under professors John Lent and Chris Castanier. She was a staff member of the school’s newspaper The Phoenix, and volunteered at the student writing assistance clinic. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Literature and Composition in 1998, and moved to the Lower Mainland to pursue her writing interests. Her writing has won or been shortlisted for such awards as CBC’s Poetry Award, Arc Magazine’s Poem of the Year, SubTerrain Magazine’s Lush Triumphant, and the Federation of B.C. Writers’ Literary Writes Award. Her writing has appeared in numerous publications including Atlantis Women’s Studies Journal, Blood and Aphorisms New Fiction, West Coast Line, and several anthologies including Rocksalt: An Anthology of Contemporary B.C. Poets and Against Death: 35 Essays on Living. Susan now resides in Langley, B.C.. By day, she is a beekeeper; by night, she produces Canada’s longest-running live storytelling competition, Vancouver Story Slam. For winning the Grand Prize, Susan receives $6,000 from the Canada Council of the Arts and a two-week writing residency at the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity. Advice to a New Beekeeper has been published on the CBC Books website.