BARBARA BLACK - POETRY AND ADULT SHORT STORY
Barbara Black is an award-winning poet, short fiction and flash fiction writer and librettist. Her debut short story collection Music from a Strange Planet (Caitlin Press) was released to critical acclaim in 2021. Her writing has been published in national and international literary journals and anthologies including The Cincinnati Review, Geist, The Hong Kong Review, Prairie Fire, and Bath Flash Fiction Volumes Five and Six. Achievements include: Fiction Finalist in the 2020 National Magazine Awards; Winner of the 2017 Writers' Union of Canada Short Prose Competition; Longlisted for the Commonwealth Short Story Prize; Winner of the Federation of BC Writers Literary Contest (Flash Fiction) 2021. She lives in Victoria, BC.
Kathy Stinson has loved reading since before she started school. She sorted mail, taught elementary school, and worked as a waitress before it occurred to her that she might like writing too.
An argument with her daughter about what the three-year-old would wear one day led to the writing of her first book, Red Is Best. It quickly became a classic and was soon followed by Big Or Little?, inspired by her son. They were two of the first picture books for toddlers published in Canada.
Kathy has since written a wide range of books: picture books, non-fiction, young adult fiction, historical fiction, horror, biography, series books, stories in anthologies and magazines.
"What you read," she says, "influences what you write. And so does the day to day life that you live." So Kathy's characters have biked along dirt paths, fallen in love in summer, argued and had cozy chats with parents and friends, and have sometimes had trouble sleeping. Kathy also enjoys the challenge of imagining herself into situations she herself has not lived: growing up during a 19th century smallpox epidemic (Marie-Claire); deciding as a grandparent that it's time to learn to read (King of the Castle); being one of the children to pass through the metro station the day Joshua Bell was playing there (The Man with the Violin, which won the prestigious TD Children's Literature Award).
Mother, stepmother, and grandmother, Kathy is still an avid reader. When not reading or writing, she enjoys photography, jigsaw puzzles, crossword puzzles, and walking her dog in the woods and fields near her home in Rockwood, Ontario.