Ashley Little named as Writer in Residence

Photo by Ashley Little

As of January, Canadian author Ashley Little began a three-month contract as the Edna Staebler Writer in Residence at Wilfrid Laurier University. The position, coming into it’s fifth year, allows the Laurier community to gain one-on-one feedback on their writing from a professional author. They will also be able to attend seminars and workshops that the writer-in-residence runs. The writer-in-residence does not only act as a resource for the Laurier community but is also required to devote time to their own works.

According to Jenny Kerber, Chair of the Edna Staebler Writer In-Residence position and professor at Laurier, Little will be a resource for students, staff and faculty who want to improve their creative writing or talk about any aspects of the publishing process. Little currently provides office hours in the Dr. Alvin Woods Building room 2138, on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 2-4 p.m.

Members of the Laurier community are welcome to drop in or to make an appointment and have Little look at their work.

“I always like exploring new places and working with the community, working with aspiring writers and offering them what I can,” Little said.

Little has worked as the writer in-residence for the Vancouver Public Library in 2015 and for the Alexandra Writers Society in Calgary 2014. Little will also be sharing her expertise through a variety of talks she will be giving.

On Jan. 26, there will be an inaugural talk and welcome event for Little.

The talk is titled “Place as Character Moving Beyond Landscape and into Genius Loci” and will go from 7:30-9 p.m. in the Hawk’s Nest.

Later in the term, Little will be running a workshop entitled “Damn Good Dialogue” that will go into how to develop good dialogue not only for novels, but also for film and theatre.

Working with the Undergraduate English Student Association, Little will be holding a creative writing contest for students and prior to the deadline, will be running a writing workshop for applicants.

According to Kerber, Little will make a wonderful new addition to the Laurier community as she will bring her versatility and expertise

“[Her] gift of dialogue [is] striking,” Kerber said.

Little has been a part of the writing community within Canada for a number of years and is moving swiftly through, having published four books in the past five years, as well as a number of short stories.

During her residency, Little will be working on two novels; the revival of her novel: Confessions of a Teenage Leper, working to double it in size, that will be published Fall 2018 and her new novel: BIG ME, a story of a teenage giant.

“[Having Little join Laurier is an] opportunity to really introduce the community to someone who we think is going to become really a great well-known major Canadian writer over the next decade or so,” Kerber said.

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