Mordecai Richler Writer-in-Residence

Situated in both the Department of English and the Département des littératures de langue française, de traduction et de création (DLTC) within the Faculty of Arts, the Mordecai Richler Writer-in-Residence Program is designed to host one accomplished writer per academic year. Writers selected for the prestigious writer-in-residence position are expected to give public lectures and readings, meet with and help to develop students’ writing; organize workshops, and generally participate in the creative and intellectual life of the departments and the Faculty.

This year’s Mordecai Richler Writer-in-Residence is acclaimed Montreal-based author Heather O’Neill. Heather O’Neill is the author of six books, including Lullabies for Little Criminals, The Lonely Hearts Hotel, and When We Lost Our Heads. She has been awarded the Canada Reads Prize, the Danuta Gleed Award, The Writer's Trust Fellowship, and the Hugh Mclennan Prize for Fiction. Her fiction has been nominated for the Giller Prize twice and the Women's Prize for Fiction three times. She is also an award-winning essayist who has written for The Guardian, The New York Times Magazine, The Globe and Mail, and The Walrus.

For more about Heather O'Neill, read a profile of her in McGill News

While in residence in the Department of English, Heather O’Neill will be convening a Creative Writing Workshop with students; selected students will be announced by email on Tuesday, February 6, 2024.

Heather O’Neill will also be participating in a conference devoted to Life Writing on February 28, from 5:45-7:30 pm in the Senior Common Room in Birks Hall. Professors Alexander Manshe, Ara Osterweil, and lecturer Kasia Van Schaik will also read from autobiographical works in progress.

Information about more events with Heather O’Neill to come soon.


Creative Writing Workshop 

Friday, February 16, 11:30-14:30
Tuesday, February 27, 15:00-17:00
3475 Peel, Rm. 204

A two-part creative writing workshop run by Heather O’Neill for interested undergraduates and graduate students. Students will engage in writing exercises, workshop one another’s submitted writing, and consult one-on-one with the Writer about their submitted work. To be considered for a spot in the workshop, please submit 5-10 pages of your best writing to [ara.osterweil [at]] by Friday, January 26. It can be fiction, creative non-fiction, or poetry. Selected students will be announced by email on Tuesday, February 6, 2024.

Life Writing Conference

February 28, 17:45-20:00
Faculty Club
3450 McTavish Street

Join Heather O'Neill in conversation with Professors Alexander Manshel, Ara Osterweil, and lecturer Kasia Van Schaik. Each speaker will read from autobiographical works in progress. Discussion and questions to follow.

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