Department of English

University of Toronto


 The Jack McClelland Writer-in-Residence


Each year the University of Toronto appoints a Canadian writer to work with students, faculty and staff interested in creative writing. The appointment process is internal; no external applications are considered or acknowledged.   From January to April, the Writer-in-Residence offers a seminar on creative writing and holds office hours for consultations on writing. The Jack McClelland Writer-in-Residence Program is housed at Massey College and is jointly sponsored by Massey and the Department of English.

John Gordon "Jack" McClelland (1922 - 2004)

 John Gordon "Jack" McClelland (1922 - 2004)



Karen Solie 

Karen Solie is the author of five collections of poetry. Her most recent, The Caiplie Caves, was published in Canada, the US, and UK, and shortlisted for the T.S. Eliot Prize and Derek Walcott Prize. The Road In Is Not the Same Road Out (2015) was shortlisted for the Trillium Book Award. Pigeon (2009) won the Griffin Poetry Prize, Trillium Poetry Prize, and Pat Lowther Award. A volume of selected poems, The Living Option, published in the UK in 2003, received a Poetry Book Society recommendation. She has worked for writing programs and held writer-in-residence positions across Canada and in the UK, more recently at the Writing School at Manchester Metropolitan University. She is the Associate Director for poetry for the Banff Centre's Writing Studio. In the autumn term of 2021, she will be the Holloway Visiting Poet and Lecturer at the University of California, Berkeley.

Karen Solie will offer a non-credit poetry workshop in the "S" term on Wednesdays, 6-8 pm. Whether the workshop will be held in person and/or online will depend on the pandemic situation at the time; details will be announced closer to the start of the winter term.

The workshop, which will accommodate no more than 15 participants, is by application and open to everyone who is currently part of the University of Toronto three-campus community-faculty, students, and staff.

If you're interested in taking this workshop, please submit directly to me ( six poems totalling 10 pages in MS Word or PDF format via your email address. No cover letter or CV is necessary.

NB: Attachments should be saved under the applicant's and the program's names (e.g., Smith_JackMcClelland_Sample_2021) and the submission email should include the following subject heading: "Jack McClelland Writer in Residence 2021Seminar."

The deadline for submissions is midnight, Friday, November 27th.

The screening will be done by the writer in residence, and results will be announced before the Christmas break.

In lieu of office hours, please contact Karen Solie ( to arrange a virtual appointment.  


Jack McClelland Writers-in-Residence

2019-20            Susan Swan

2018-19            André Alexis

2017-18            Garry Thomas Morse 

2016-17            Sachiko Murakami
2015-16            Rawi Hage
2014-15            Shani Mootoo
2013-14            David Bezmozgis
2012-13            Joy Kogawa
2011-12            Michael Winter

2010-11            Barbara Gowdy

2009-10            Michael Redhill

2008-09            Christopher Dewdney

2007-08            David Gilmour

2006-07            Don McKay

2005-06            Camilla Gibb

2004-05            George Fetherling

2003-04            Steven Heighton

2002-03            Albert F. Moritz

2001-02            Kildare Dobbs

2000-01            Austin Clarke

1999-00            Erin Mouré

1998-99            Sarah Ellis

1997-98            Roo Borson

1996-97            Jane Urquhart

1995-96            Tom Wayman

1994-95            Susan Musgrave

1993-94            Tomson Highway

Spring 1993      Audrey Thomas

1991-92            Judith Merril

1990-91            Patrick Lane

1989-90            Lorna Crozier

1988-89            Erika Ritter

1987-88            Al Purdy

1986-87            Gwendolyn MacEwen

1985-86            Mary di Michele

1984-85            Leon Rooke

1983-84            Mavis Gallant

Spring 1983      Dorothy Livesay

Fall 1982          Brian Moore

1981-82            Irving Layton

1980-81            Marian Engel1

979-80              Timothy Findley

1978-79            Dennis Lee

1977-78            Carol Bolt

1976-77            John Newlove

1975-76            Adele Wiseman

1974-75            Fletcher Markle

1973-74            W.O. Mitchell

1972-73            Margaret Atwood

Spring 1971     Josef Škvorecký

Fall 1970          R.D.C. Finch

1969-70            Margaret Laurence

1968-69            Jack Ludwig

1965-68            Earle Birney

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