Non-fiction (Children)

Jill Bryant

Jill Bryant is a writer who specializes in children’s non-fiction. Born in Toronto, Ontario, Jill grew up in Elora and Eden Mills, Ontario. She holds an Honours Bachelor of Arts degree with a major in English (Applied Studies option) and a minor in Drama from the University of Waterloo in Waterloo, Ontario. After university, she spent ten months travelling overland from England to India with her now-husband, Daryn. A year later, Jill and Daryn travelled to South-East Asia for three months and then taught English in Japan for one year.

Jill has worked as an in-house editor for former Toronto publishers Houghton Mifflin Canada, D.C. Heath, and Somerville House Books. She currently freelances for many publishers, including Scholastic, Pearson, and Nelson. Her first book, Sew Your Own Bean Bag Friends, was published in 1998.

Jill, Daryn, and their daughter Zoë moved to Halifax, Nova Scotia in 2000 when Daryn accepted a position at King’s College. Their second daughter, Mari, was born in Halifax. They spent four years there, living on the ocean. Next, Jill’s family moved to Princeton, New Jersey for a year and then to Manchester, UK for two years. Jill and her family spent the 2007-2008 school year in Berlin, Germany. In August, 2008, Jill and her family moved to Kingston, Ontario where they hope to stay for many years!

Joan Payzant

Joan Payzant has written numerous books and articles about the history of Dartmouth, Halifax and Nova Scotia. These include non-fiction, and fiction for children. She was born in Dartmouth and grew up hearing stories of the Halifax Explosion, which are featured in her books Who’s a Scaredy-cat! and December, 1917, Revisiting the Halifax Explosion. Joan is a graduate of Dalhousie.

 

 

Jane Baskwill

Jane Baskwill was born in Queens, New York, but has lived most of her adult life in rural Nova Scotia. There she has watched foxes steal pears from beneath the trees in her back yard, listened to red-tailed hawks argue over a recently caught meal, smelled the arrival of a family of skunks, and tasted the wild blackberries that grow in the fields and by the roadside.

Jane appreciates and respects the beauty of nature in all its forms and all its moments. She is a strong advocate for equity and social justice and works with schools to promote Peace and Environmental education. She shares this with her husband and three children, and with others through her teaching, writing and poetry.

She has authored many professional books and articles for teachers in addition to an award-winning video series. She has also authored a book of poetry for children and three picture books: Somewhere (1996), Touch the Earth (1999), and If Peace Is… (2003), (Mondo Publishing, New York). Her latest book, Together in Time (2012, InSync Books) a novel for children 8 to 12 years old, is set in the abandoned settlement of Roxbury in the Annapolis Valley.

She is a former teacher and principal and is currently on the Education Faculty at Mount Saint Vincent University, Halifax.

Jane is a six-time recipient of the Education Quality Award from the Nova Scotia Teachers’ Union and received the Distinguished Achievement Award from the Educational Press Association of America for her series of articles in Teaching K-8 Magazine.

During the 2007/08 school year Jane completed a school-wide writing project with Holland Road Elementary School that resulted in the publication of a picture book: A Kid’s Guide to Making and Being A Friend, used as a school fundraiser.

Jane also helps schools and communities start their own Family Literacy publishing house. Publish It! has produced over 500 non-fiction picture books written by children and their parents and illustrated with photos they have taken.

Anne Carter

Picture Books, MG Non-Fiction and Fiction, YA fiction.

Anne divides her time writing and teaching between Toronto Island and the LaHave River, Nova Scotia.

Rita Wilson

Rita Wilson is a former elementary school teacher and author of the newly published, A Pocket of Time, a children’s book about the poet, Elizabeth Bishop’s childhood in Great Vilage, Nova Scotia.

She is currently working on a collection of poetry about the importance of place in our lives, from her vantage point on the Caribou River. She has published non-fiction in Saltscapes Magazine, poetry in various publications, and is one of the founders of Writing on Fire, promoting writing experiences for teens on the North Shore. She finds pleasure in her garden, the beach, books, her children and grandchildren, and the company of friends.

Emma FitzGerald

Emma FitzGerald was born in Southern Africa to Irish parents and grew up in Vancouver. She has studied both art and architecture, and is the author of Hand Drawn Halifax. She lives and draws in North End Halifax.

Shauntay Grant

BIOGRAPHY

Shauntay Grant is a writer and performance artist from Halifax, Nova Scotia. She teaches creative writing at Dalhousie University, and as Halifax’s third poet laureate she organized Canada’s first national gathering of Canadian poets laureate. An award-winning author of children’s literature, Shauntay’s picture book Africville with illustrator Eva Campbell was a finalist for a 2018 Governor General’s Literary Award and a 2019 Ruth and Sylvia Schwartz Children’s Book Award. Her other honours include a Best Atlantic-Published Book prize from the Atlantic Book Awards, a Poet of Honour prize from Spoken Word Canada, and a Joseph S. Stauffer Prize from the Canada Council for the Arts.

Shauntay’s work has earned her invitations to present at local and international events including Canada’s national Word On The Street festivals, the Vancouver Writers Festival, Ottawa’s Versefest, Moncton’s Frye Festival, Toronto’s Luminato Festival, Australia’s National Young Writers’ Festival, the Jamaica Poetry Festival, and the 10th Anniversary Launch of the Freedom Schooner Amistad in Havana, Cuba. Her plays have been presented by 2b theatre (Halifax), Neptune Theatre (Halifax), Eastern Front Theatre (Halifax), Black Theatre Workshop (Montreal), and b current (Toronto). Her poems have been published in several anthologies and literary journals including the Fieldstone Review and Contemporary Verse 2: The Canadian Journal of Poetry and Critical Writing.

Shauntay is a descendant of Black Loyalists, Jamaican Maroons, and Black Refugees who came to Canada during the 18th and 19th centuries. Her love of language stretches back to her storytelling roots in Nova Scotia’s historic Black communities, and her homegrown artistic practice embraces African Nova Scotian history and folk culture, as well as contemporary approaches to literature and performance. She is a multidisciplinary artist with professional degrees and training in creative writing, music, and theatre. Connect with her on Facebook or join the Mailing List to stay updated on her latest news.

PUBLICATIONS

  • My Hair Is Beautiful (Nimbus, 2019)
  • Africville (Groundwood, 2018)
  • The Walking Bathroom (Nimbus, 2017)
  • Apples and Butterflies (Nimbus, 2012).
  • The City Speaks In Drums (Nimbus, 2010)
  • Up Home (Nimbus, 2008).

AWARDS

  • Governor General’s Literary Award finalist; Ruth and Sylvia Schwartz Children’s Book Awards finalist; Joseph S. Stauffer Prize; Ann Connor Brimer Award finalist; Spoken Word Canada Poet of Honour; Best Atlantic Published Book Prize; Hackmatack Awards finalist.
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