Festival 2020  Authors & Headliners

Yasser Abdellatif

Yasser Abdellatif

Yasser Abdel-Latif is a writer and poet from Cairo, Egypt. He has lived and worked in Edmonton since 2010. He has published four fiction books, two poetry collections, and translated many literary works from French ... Read More 

Jordan Abel

Jordan Abel

Jordan Abel is a Nisga’a writer from Vancouver. He is the author of The Place of Scraps (winner of the Dorothy Livesay Poetry Prize), Un/inhabited, and Injun (winner of the Griffin Poetry Prize). Abel’s ... Read More 

David Berry

David Berry

David Berry is a writer and cultural critic. His work has appeared in The Globe & Mail, Hazlitt, Toronto Life, and elsewhere, and he was an arts and culture columnist for the National Post ... Read More 

Mila Bongco-Philipzig

Mila Bongco-Philipzig

Mila Bongco-Philipzig was born in Manila, Philippines and arrived in Edmonton in 1984 with a grant for graduate studies at the University of Alberta. After completing her master’s, she moved to Germany on a ... Read More 

Leilei Chen

Leilei Chen

Leilei Chen is an academic, a writer, and a translator from China. She is the author of Re- Orienting China: Travel Writing and Cross-cultural Understanding, which was nominated for the Robert Kroetsch City of ... Read More 

Liam Coady

Liam Coady

Liam Coady’s work is special for its ability to foreground the human possibilities of social unity, personal resilience, love and enduring hopefulness. A member of the 2011 National Slam Champion Team and a 2-time ... Read More 

Desmond Cole

Desmond Cole

Desmond Cole is the author of the number one bestseller THE SKIN WE’RE IN: A Year of Black Resistance and Power. He is an award-winning journalist, radio host, and activist whose writing has appeared ... Read More 

Christa Couture

Christa Couture

Christa Couture is an award-winning performing and recording artist, non-fiction writer and broadcaster. She is also proudly Indigenous (mixed Cree and Scandinavian), queer, and a mom. Her seventh album Safe Harbour was released on ... Read More 

Torbjørn Ekelund

Torbjørn Ekelund

Torbjørn Ekelund is an author and editor of the Norwegian online nature magazine, Harvest Magazine. He is a dedicated outdoors person and avid walker, who, after being diagnosed with epilepsy several years ago, hung up his car ... Read More 

Luciana Erregue

Luciana Erregue-Sacchi

Luciana Erregue is a Canadian-Argentinian art historian, writer, and editor. Her poetry and creative non-fiction essays have appeared in the anthologies Looking Back, Moving Forward (Mawenzi House, 2018), Relatos Entrecruzados (Editorial Mapalé, 2020), and ... Read More 

Ann Friedman

Ann Friedman

Ann Friedman is a journalist, essayist, and media entrepreneur. She is a contributing editor to The Gentlewoman. Every Friday, she sends a popular email newsletter. Ann lives in Los Angeles. Read More 

Shimelis Gebremichael

Shimelis Gebremichael

Shimelis Gebremichael moved to Canada about four years ago. Shimelis is originally from Ethiopia where he practiced journalism in both print and electronic mediums. He is currently a Master of Arts in Communications and ... Read More 

Tazeen Hasan

Tazeen Hasan

In addition to maintaining her own blog, Tazeen Hasan regularly contributes hard news, investigative pieces, and editorials on topics ranging from science and technology to geopolitics and entertainment for a variety of online and ... Read More 

Ian Keteku

Ian Keteku

Ian Keteku is a poet, writer, multimedia artist and educator living in Toronto. He is the 2010 World Poetry Slam Champion. His work is committed to using words as both an interpretation and cure ... Read More 

Helen Knott

Helen Knott

Helen Knott is a Dane Zaa, Nehiyaw, and mixed Euro- descent woman living in Fort St. John, British Columbia. In 2016, Helen was one of sixteen global change makers featured by the Nobel Women’s ... Read More 

Gina Rae La Cerva

Gina Rae La Cerva

Gina Rae La Cerva is a geographer, environmental anthropologist, writer and painter. She holds advanced degrees from Yale University’s School of Forestry and Environmental Studies and the University of Cambridge, and a Bachelor’s degree ... Read More 

Amanda Leduc

Amanda Leduc

Amanda Leduc‘s essays and stories have appeared in publications across Canada, the US, and the UK. She is the author of the novels The Miracles of Ordinary Men and the forthcoming The Centaur’s Wife. ... Read More 

Wendy McGrath

Wendy McGrath

Wendy McGrath is a writer and artist who works in multiple genres. Her poetry/photography collaboration with Danny Miles, drummer for July Talk and Tongue Helmet, is trying to find a home. McGrath’s most recent ... Read More 

Marco Melfi

Marco Melfi

Marco Melfi is an Edmonton poet whose work has been published in The Prairie Journal, FreeFall, the Edmonton Poetry Festival’s Poetry Route and 40 Below: Volume 2. His chapbook, In Between Trains, was published ... Read More 

Peter Midgley

Peter Midgley

Peter Midgley is a poet and storyteller born in South Africa and based in Edmonton. He has performed in several countries around the world and has published three children’s books, one of which, Thuli’s ... Read More 

Amina Mohamed

Amina Mohamed

Amina Mohamed was born and raised in Amiskwacîwâskahikan. She is a community organizer and a poet that works towards reconciling her culture with who she has become. Amina is a writer of words, a ... Read More 

Juliana Neufeld

Juliana Neufeld

Juliana Neufeld is a Toronto based children’s book illustrator and artist, known for her work on Treasure Hunters, the best selling middle grade series by James Patterson, as well as her collaborations with noted ... Read More 

Adriana Onita

Adriana Oniță

Adriana Oniță is a Romanian-Canadian poet, founder of The Polyglot, a multilingual magazine of poetry and art. She writes poetry in English, Spanish, Romanian, French, and Italian. Her passion for languages has led her ... Read More 

Michelle Parise

Michelle Parise

Michelle Parise is an award-winning journalist, writer and performer. She’s worked for the CBC for more than two decades, in everything from radio news, children’s television, music programming, and at the helm of many ... Read More 

Nisha Patel

Nisha Patel

Nisha Patel is an award-winning queer poet & artist. She is the City of Edmonton’s Poet Laureate, and the Canadian Individual Slam Champion. She is a recipient of the Edmonton Artists’ Trust Fund Award.  ... Read More 

James Raffan

James Raffan

James Raffan is a prolific writer, speaker, and geographer, and the author of numerous books, including the bestselling Circling the Midnight Sun; Emperor of the North; Bark, Skin and Cedar; and Fire in the ... Read More 

Namitha Rathinappillai

Namitha Rathinappillai

Namitha Rathinappillai (she/her) is a Tamil-Canadian spoken word poet, artist, and writer who has entered the poetry community in 2017. She has been involved with Urban Legends Poetry Collective (ULPC) ever since her engagement ... Read More 

David A. Robertson

David A. Robertson

David A. Robertson is the author of numerous books for young readers including When We Were Alone, which won the 2017 Governor General’s Literary Award and was nominated for the TD Canadian Children’s Literature Award.  A ... Read More 

Ana Ruiz Aguirre

Ana Ruiz Aguirre

Ana Ruiz Aguirre is a Cuban-Canadian cultural researcher and development strategist. Born in Santiago de Cuba and currently based in amiskwaciwâskahikan (Edmonton, AB), her work focuses on the development of cultural equity through research, writing, ... Read More 

Maitham Salman

Maitham Salman

Maitham Salman was born in Iraq and came to Canada in 1998 as a political refugee. He has published a novel, Husks as Big as My Country, and a collection of short stories, The Dirhams ... Read More 

Asma Sayed

Asma Sayed

Asma Sayed is Canada Research Chair in South Asian Literary and Cultural Studies at Kwantlen Polytechnic University. She is a multilingual writer, translator, and academic originally from India. She holds a PhD in Comparative ... Read More 

Anna Marie Sewell

Anna Marie Sewell

Anna Marie Sewell specializes in collaborative multi-genre projects. MacEwan University’s 2019 Writer-in-Residence, her creative process draws on heritage (Mi’gmaq/Anishinaabe/Polish), music, and multiple languages. Edmonton’s fourth Poet Laureate, she’s published two poetry books. Her first ... Read More 

Vivek Shraya

Vivek Shraya

Vivek Shraya is an artist whose body of work crosses the boundaries of music, literature, visual art, theatre, and film. Her best-selling book I’m Afraid of Men was her­ald­ed by Vanity Fair as “cultural ... Read More 

Harnarayan Singh

Harnarayan Singh

Harnarayan Singh is a co-host and play-by-play announcer, having called over 700 NHL games for Hockey Night in Canada Punjabi, along with becoming a host in English with Sportsnet for select national games. Having ... Read More 

Titilope Sonuga

Titilope Sonuga

Titilope Sonuga is a writer and performer whose work has graced stages and pages across the globe. Through her practice, she grasps for moments of tenderness and persistent joy at the intersection of blackness ... Read More 

Aminatou Sow

Aminatou Sow

Aminatou Sow is a writer, interviewer, and cultural commentator. She is a frequent public speaker whose talks and interviews lead to candid conversations about ambition, money, and power. Aminatou lives in Brooklyn. Read More 

Lindy West

Lindy West

Lindy West is a contributing opinion writer for The New York Times. She is the bestselling author of Shrill, a memoir which has been adapted into a Hulu series starring Aidy Bryant (airing on ... Read More 

Brandon Wint

Brandon Wint

Brandon Wint is an Ontario born poet and spoken word artist who uses poetry to attend to the joy and devastation and inequity associated with this era of human and ecological history. Increasingly, his ... Read More 

Julia Zarankin

Julia Zarankin

Julia Zarankin is a writer and self-proclaimed birdsplainer. She has written for media including The Walrus, Antioch Review, Birding Magazine, Ontario Nature and The Globe and Mail. Zarankin won the Eden Mills Writers’ Festival ... Read More 


To see the festival's author line-ups from previous years, visit our Headliners Archive.