The 2018 Dawson Daily News Print & Publishing Festival: Writer Biographies

Carleigh Baker is a Cree-Metis/ Icelandic writer who lives as a guest on the traditional, ancestral, unceded territories of the Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh peoples. Her work has appeared in Best Canadian Essays (Tightrope, 2016), The Short Story Advent Calendar (Hingston & Olsen, 2017), and The Journey Prize Anthology (McClelland & Stewart 2015). She also writes reviews for the Globe and Mail, the Literary Review of Canada, and The Malahat Review. Her debut story collection, Bad Endings (Anvil, 2017) was a finalist for the Rogers Writers’ Trust Award and the BC Book Prize Bill Duthie Booksellers’ Choice Award, and won the City of Vancouver Book Award.


Christine Fellows and John K. Samson are partners and Winnipeg-based songwriters. Together and individually, they have produced and presented several projects over the past two decades, from albums to touring performance works. As arts advocates and mentors, they are committed to fostering community and inclusiveness, while championing the art of songwriting.

John K. Samson has released two solo albums, a collection of poetry and lyrics, and five albums as the songwriter for acclaimed band The Weakerthans. His work has allowed him to highlight the importance of social justice and community to a widespread, devoted international audience. John was Managing Editor of ARP Books for 15 years, often working with groups and collectives to bring writers together in conversation.

Christine Fellows has released six solo albums and a poetry collection. Through her work as a songwriter, she examines social and environmental issues through a feminist lens. An avid interdisciplinary collaborator, she often works with visual artists, choreographers, and musicians to create performance works and spectacles. She has produced and recorded several commissioned scores for film, television, dance, and theatre.


Photo credit Jourdan Tymkow

Ivan Coyote is the author of eleven books, the creator of four short films, six full-length live shows, and three albums that combine storytelling with music. Ivan is a seasoned stage performer, and over the last two decades has become an audience favourite at storytelling, writer’s, film, poetry, and folk music festivals from Anchorage to Amsterdam and Australia.

The Globe and Mail newspaper called Coyote “a natural-born storyteller” and the Ottawa Xpress once said that “Coyote is to Canadian literature what kd lang is to country music: a beautifully odd fixture.”

Ivan often grapples with the complex and intensely personal issues of gender identity in their work, as well as topics such as family, class, social justice and queer liberation, but always with a generous heart, a quick wit, and the nuanced and finely-honed timing of a gifted raconteur. Ivan’s stories remind of us of our own fallible and imperfect humanity while at the same time inspiring us to change the world.

Ivan’s 11th book, Tomboy Survival Guide, was released in the fall of 2016 with Arsenal Pulp Press. Tomboy Survival Guide was named an American Library Association Stonewall Honour Book in 2016, shortlisted for the prestigious Hilary Weston Roger’s Trust prize for non-fiction in 2017, and longlisted for Canada Reads 2018. Last fall Ivan was given an Honorary Doctorate of Laws at Simon Fraser University for their writing and activism.


Born in a small mining town in the Northwest Territories and raised in Whitehorse, Laurel Parry writes and tells stories about the interior of family life. Her work can be found in a smattering of publications and she was a finalist in the 2008 CBC Poetry contest. She is working on a collection of stories and trying to complete yet another draft of her novel, A Light Hand on the Wheel, which is a fictionalized account referencing her early years in a small mining town on a remote island in BC. Laurel is grateful to present her story: The “Bargain of the Angels’ Share” which was performed as an opening act for the Gordie Tentrees Woodshed Session concert at Hamilton and Sons Guitar Works in November 2017.


Sandy Pool is a writer and classically trained theatre artist who lives in Toronto. Sandy holds a degree in Theatre and English from the University of Toronto, as well as a Master’s of Fine Arts degree in Creative Writing from the University of Guelph. She is the winner of both the Constance Rooke Scholarship In Creative Writing and the Sharon Drummond Scholarship in Creative Writing. Her work has been published in many literary journals across Canada including The Antigonish Review, The Capilano Review, Contemporary Verse 2, dANDelion, The Fiddlehead, Filling Station, Grain, and Sub-terrain. She has been shortlisted for the Matrix Lit Pop award and has been recently supported by a Writer’s Work In Progress grant from the Ontario Arts Council. She has also been anthologized in TOK: Writing The New Toronto.

Sandy also writes Opera librettos, and has been comissioned by Tapestry New Opera Works. Currently, Sandy teaches writing at Humber College, and is also working as a voice-over artist for productions in Canada and the United States. Her fist book of poetry “Exploding Into Night” was released with Guernica Editions in December.


David A. Robertson is an award-winning writer. His books include When We Were Alone (Governor General’s Literary Award winner, McNally Robinson Best Book for Young People winner, TD Canadian Children’s Literature Award finalist), Will I See? (winner of the Manuela Dias Book Design and Illustration Award Graphic Novel Category), and the YA novel Strangers. David educates as well as entertains through his writings about Canada’s Indigenous Peoples, reflecting their cultures, histories, communities, as well as illuminating many contemporary issues. David is a member of Norway House Cree Nation. He lives in Winnipeg.


Christopher Healey is an artist, filmmaker and online publishing specialist. He holds a BFA (Studio) from Concordia University and an MA (Communications in New Media) from McMaster University. Healey has worked in arts administration for over 20 years including at .terminal Gallery, the Ottawa School of Art, Hamilton Artists Inc, Culturshoc, Gallery 155b and with publications such as Canadian Art Magazine, Art PR Wire and Guerrilla Magazine.

Noted for his series of early (2008+) social media based interviews of artists on Queen Street West in Toronto, Healey’s current artistic practice centres on institutional critique, working with found / generated fragmented texts and re-framing public spheres as contested sites of broken dialogue. Originally from Ottawa, he currently lives in Dawson City, Yukon.