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Apply to the Emerging Writing Mentorship Award


Plenitude Magazine invites emerging Canadian queer writers to enter the Emerging Writer Mentorship Award. In February, 2015, the award was for fiction and the winner was Sasha Boczkowksi.

Eligible writers have yet to publish their work in book form. Submissions for the 2016 Emerging Writer Mentorship Award for Creative Non-fiction are now open. One emerging Canadian LGBTQ writer will be awarded a mentorship is with Michael V. Smith.

The mentorship will take place over three months, some time during the period from March 1 to July 31. The mentorship includes two rounds of manuscript evaluation of up to three works of non-fiction (maximum 12,000 words total), and two phone or Skype meeting with mentor. In order for the winning writer to benefit the most from this mentorship, they must be able to work on revisions during that time, and be forthcoming in conversations.

Michael V. Smith

Michael V. Smith

Michael V. Smith won the inaugural Dayne Ogilvie Prize for Emerging LGBT Writers from the Writers Trust of Canada for his first novel, Cumberland, which was also nominated for the Amazon First Novel Award. He’s since published two poetry books and a second novel, Progress. An improv comic, filmmaker, drag queen, and occasional clown, Smith investigates notions of community and belonging, especially as relating to sexuality, gender, class, and identity. He teaches creative writing in the Faculty of Creative and Critical Studies at University of British Columbia’s Okanagan campus in Kelowna, BC. Michael’s latest book, My Body Is Yours (Arsenal Pulp, 2o15), is a bold memoir in which he comes to terms with his past “failures” at masculinity, and with an aging father he is only beginning to come to know, offering a new way of thinking about breaking out of gender norms, and reconciling with a dangerous childhood.

We asked Michael what he hopes the Emerging Writer Mentoship Award winner will gain from this experience:

In the big picture, I’m hoping the writer will get a clearer sense of what kind of manuscript they are working on, outside of their primary intentions. What we write is rarely specifically what we set out to write. I want to help the writer see more clearly what they’ve put on paper, and nurture that product into its best self. I’m hoping we’ll see beneath the surface of the work for the subtler ideas at play, and that we’ll tighten the theme and broaden its reach–open or close doors in the work, as necessary.

On a smaller scale, I hope we can work on the rhythm and sense of the sentences, look at diction, at tone, and at the shape and length of a phrase, and improve our understanding of how the small parts feed the big ideas.


The deadline for submissions is NOVEMBER 27, 2015 DECEMBER 11, 2015


Please submit ONE work of non-fiction of up to 4000 words using Submittable. In your cover letter, please answer the following questions in 500 words or less:

1. How long have you been writing?

2. What are your strengths and weaknesses?

3. In your current writing project, what are you struggling with?

4. What do you hope to gain from working with a mentor?

Submissions will also be considered for publication in the upcoming issue.