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Charlotte Gill, 2008-2009 Canadian Writer-in-Residence

Charlotte Gill, 2008 - 2009 Canadian Writer-in-ResidenceCharlotte Gill was born a twin in London, England to an English mother and a Sikh father. In 1972 her parents moved with the family to Canada. They lived briefly in New Brunswick and Nova Scotia before moving to Toronto. She was raised there and in rural New York State, where her family settled in the late seventies. She returned to Canada to attend the University of Toronto.

As a student Gill spent her summers working as a tree planter in northern Ontario. After her graduation from the U of T, this tree planting occupation continued, taking her west to Alberta and remote sections of British Columbia. In nearly 20 years, Gill has planted more than a million trees over an area equivalent to 600 Manhattan city blocks. The unique subculture attendant to this intense, gritty labour evolved into the book Eating Dirt.

In 2000 Gill graduated from the MFA program in creative writing at the University of British Columbia. Her Masters thesis became her first book, Ladykiller, seven stories exploring some of the darker undercurrents of urban living. Ladykiller was nominated for a Governor General's Literary Award and went on to win the Danuta Gleed Award, a national prize for best debut short story collection, and the B.C. Book Prize for Fiction. 2011's Eating Dirt won the B.C. National Award and Hubert Evans Non-Fiction Prize, and was named CBA Libris Non-Fiction Book of the Year for 2012.

Gill's work has appeared in many Canadian magazines. Her literary journalism has been nominated for National and Western Magazine Awards. Her short stories have been anthologized in Best Canadian Stories and The Journey Prize Stories and have been broadcast on CBC Radio.

Click here to visit Charlotte's website.