Libraries Name 2020 Writers in Residence

Susie Moloney, fiction writer, taking up residence at EPL

EDMONTON, AB, December 13, 2019 – The Metro Edmonton Federation of Libraries is delighted to announce that fiction writer Susie Moloney and playwright Conni Massing have been selected to serve as Writers in Residence at Edmonton, Fort Saskatchewan, Strathcona County and St. Albert public libraries for 2020. Moloney and Massing will offer a wide range of free writing support and programs to writers of all ages and experience levels through their roles with the libraries.

The Metro Federation is a consortium of four libraries: Edmonton Public Library, Fort Saskatchewan Public Library, St. Albert Public Library and Strathcona County Library. Each is a partner in this venture and will play host to a Writer in Residence over the coming 12 months.

“EPL is delighted to welcome author Susie Moloney as our 2020 Writer in Residence,” said Pilar Martinez, CEO of EPL. “It is an honour to host someone with such tremendous talent who is eager to nurture and support both aspiring and established writers.”

Susie Moloney is a novelist, journalist, essayist and screenwriter. Her second novel, A Dry Spell, has been published in 18 countries and translated into 12 languages, and Tom Cruise optioned the film rights to it. Her other novels, Bastion Falls, The Dwelling, and The Thirteen have also sold in multiple countries and languages. She is the author of a collection of short fiction, Things Withered. An award-winning novelist, screenwriter, and columnist, Susie has just completed her first feature film, Bright Hill Road, and it will be screening soon.

“I think it's going to be amazing to see not only the quality of work that's out there, but the incredible scope of things that people are writing about,” says Moloney. “I really hope I can offer Edmonton writers the confidence they need to put down their thoughts, feelings, opinions, theories, on paper in the form of a story. Everyone has a story, and just imagine the people who want you to share it, your parents, your children, your friends. 'I had no idea you felt that way,' is the greatest conversation starter there is.”

As the regional Writer in Residence, Conni Massing will split her time between Fort Saskatchewan, St. Albert and Strathcona County, with multiple-month stints in each community. Massing is an award-winning playwright and screenwriter whose recent stage credits include her new romantic comedy Oh! Christmas Tree; Matara; Pants on Fire, The Mommy Monologues; Night Shift, This is YEG; The Invention of Romance; and her widely-produced stage adaptations of W.O Mitchell’s Jake and the Kid and Bruce Allen Powe’s The Aberhart Summer. She has worked as a writer and editor for numerous TV shows, including North of 60 and The Adventures of Shirley Holmes, and her film projects include Invisible and Voila!. Conni has published six plays and a comic memoir, Roadtripping: On the Move with the Buffalo Gals. She has taught writing at the University of Alberta, Red Deer College and the National Theatre School of Canada.

“I’m thrilled to be working in the communities of Sherwood Park, Fort Saskatchewan and St. Albert as the 2020 Regional Writer in Residence. There are so many lively and important connections formed within library communities and I’m honoured to be a part of that network in the coming year,” says Massing. “I look forward to meeting with writers in these communities to hear about their experiences and will do whatever I can to help bring their stories to life.”

While in residence, each writer will devote roughly half their time to mentoring other writers and the other half to working on personal projects.

Local writers can take advantage of workshops with both Writers in Residence and will also have the opportunity to work with them one-on-one. Those who want to book time with EPL's Writer in Residence can visit in January 2020 to contact Susie.

On top of the Writers in Residence program, EPL offers Edmontonians a gathering place – both digitally and physically – for the exchange of ideas and education on the craft of writing through the Capital City Press initiative. Capital City Press showcases notable work from within the community, while also giving Edmontonians a chance to discover fantastic local talent and discuss their creations.

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About the Metro Edmonton Federation of Libraries
The Metro Edmonton Federation of Libraries consists of Edmonton Public Library, Fort Saskatchewan Public Library, St. Albert Public Library and Strathcona County Library. Libraries in the Federation collaborate on programs, projects and events, and share methods to help customers learn to use eReaders and download eBooks.

About Edmonton Public Library
Edmonton Public Library (EPL) is proud to be 2014 Library of the Year! We’ve come a long way since 1913 when books were all you could find on our shelves … and we’re just getting started! Today, EPL carries everything you care about. We are Edmonton’s largest lender of all manner of information and entertainment. Our professionally trained staff take you beyond Google with the knowledge, discernment and desire to help you navigate a universe of information. The second most visited place in Edmonton, every year EPL hosts over 15.4 million in-branch and online visits across our 21 branches and website. We deliver our incredible content to you everywhere – in the library, at home or on your handheld device. Unmatched access and unrivalled value – that is today’s EPL. EPL is a registered charity and relies on donations to enhance services. Spread the words.

About Fort Saskatchewan Public Library: Fort Saskatchewan Public Library is open, bright, and full of activity! Serving a population of over 24,000 (and growing!) FSPL is a place for children, youth, adults, and seniors to engage in a variety of interactive programs and activities. From finding your perfect next read to our innovative Makerspace, FSPL is a space for everyone. Not only do we provide resources and programs for learning and development, we are also a place to meet friends, relax, and to enjoy being a part of the community.

About St. Albert Public Library: St. Albert Public Library is your place to be, to meet, and to grow. This vital community hub is one of the busiest mid-sized libraries in Canada, the most visited place in downtown St. Albert, and is consistently rated as one of the key strengths of the city – last year, the library welcomed almost 60,000 people to more than 1,400 programs, and loaned more than 1,000,000 resources, including print, AV and electronic resources. SAPL is committed to evolving alongside the community we serve, reducing barriers to access, and creating opportunities for citizens to engage with ideas, resources, and each other. We’re excited to open the Jensen Lakes storefront location in January 2020, to better connect with underserved parts of our community.

About Strathcona County Library: Strathcona County Library is located in the heart of Sherwood Park but serves the entire Strathcona County, an area of 1,265 square kilometres, through the services of a Bookmobile and a partnership with Fort Saskatchewan Public Library. In November 2010, we opened the doors to our newest home in the Strathcona County Community Centre. Spread out over 64,000 square feet on two floors, our main branch houses a 200,000+ collection that includes books, eBooks, audiobooks, DVDs, CDs, newspapers, magazines and databases. We also host several hundred programs each year, ranging from early literacy development with infants to travel insurance for seniors. Strathcona County Library – your place for literacy, learning and leisure.

For more information, contact:

Marina Afonso
Communications Specialist, Edmonton Public Library

Melanie Hilchie
Community Librarian, Fort Saskatchewan Public Library

Leslie Greentree
Marketing and Communications Specialist, St. Albert Public Library

Sally Neal
Communications Specialist, Strathcona County Library