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4 Concordians shortlisted for Quebec Writers Federation awards

Congratulations to Sina Queyras and Anne Renaud! Winners announced at Nov. 20 gala
November 14, 2018
By Lee-Ann Mudaly

Four Concordia graduates are among the nominees for the 2018 Quebec Writer’s Federation (QWF) Literature Awards. Spotlighting English-language writers from Quebec, the awards include seven $3,000 book prizes for fiction, non-fiction, poetry, first book, translation, children’s and young adult literature, and playwriting.

The winners will be announced at a gala ceremony at Montreal’s Lion d’Or on Tuesday, November 20.

This year’s finalists include these alumni:

Beirut Hellfire Society

Paragraphe Hugh Maclennan Prize for Fiction

Rawi Hage, BFA 98
Beirut Hellfire Society (Knopf Canada)

The award-winning novelist’s Beirut Hellfire Society is set in 1978 during Lebanon’s Civil War. Pavlov is the son of an undertaker. Upon his father’s death, he is approached by a member of an anti-religious sect, the Hellfire Society. The group arranges burial or cremation for those who have been outcast and abandoned by family, church and state. Honour-bound, Pavlov agrees to take up his father’s work for the society. He acts as survivor-chronicler of his torn and fading community, bearing witness to both its enduring rituals and its inevitable decline.

My Ariel

A.M. Klein Prize for Poetry

Sina Queyras, MA 95
My Ariel (Coach House Books)

My Ariel is Queyras’s poem-by-poem engagement with Sylvia Plath’s Ariel and the towering mythology surrounding it. Her poems ask: “Where were you when you first read Ariel? Who were you? What has changed in your life? In the lives of women?” The work is an exploration of the cultural norms, forms and procedures that frame and contain the lives of women. Queyra is a senior lecturer in Concordia’s Department of English.


Gillian Sze, BA 06, MA 08
Panicle (ECW Press)

Sze’s Panicle, her fifth collection of poetry, sweeps across the natural world, intimate relationships and the literary, visual and performing arts. Challenging our notion of seeing, she asks the reader to question the process of looking. Through dealing with moving and still images, Sze’s poetry ruminates on nature, desire and history.

Mr. Crum’s Potato Predicament

QWF Prize for Children’s and Young Adult Literature

Anne Renaud, BA 83
Mr. Crum’s Potato Predicament (Kids Can Press)

Renaud’s picture book Mr. Crum’s Potato Predicament tells the story of 19th-century American chef George Crum. Attempting to please a very demanding diner, the mischievous Crum invented the first potato chip — by accident.

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