“With assured debuts in two genres, Alex Leslie melds remarkable acuity of vision with a refreshing eagerness for formal experimentation. She’s at once a writer’s writer and an accomplished teller of tales. Leslie displays a tremendous gift for compassion that’s equal to a talent for technique.”
–Dayne Ogilvie Prize Jury Citation, The Writers’ Trust of Canada
“Gem-like stories…Clear-eyed, poetic prose from an impressive rising talent.”
“Leslie’s writing blends patience and violence… We All Need to Eat is a work of precision. As the stories layer on top of each other, Alex Leslie opens many of urban life’s paradoxes.”
– Canadian Notes & Queries
Praise for We All Need to Eat
“We All Need to Eat is a stunning inquiry into the sharpness of the world as it collides with the fragility – the ambiguities and possibilities – of the self. Alex Leslie a tremendously gifted and compassionate writer. This bold and searing collection is a wonder.”
—Madeleine Thien, Scotiabank Giller Prize winning author of Do Not Say We Have Nothing, Dogs at the Perimeter, Certainty, and Simple Recipes
“[Moves] between the poetic and the fictional, constantly evolving, constantly making words swerve in countless directions, and captivating readers one sentence at a time. A magnetic collection that must be read over and over.”
“There’s plenty to say about We All Need To Eat, all of it good. In her second story collection Vancouver’s Alex Leslie has created a thematically rich and sophisticated portrait of an individual and her entwined networks — family, friends, lovers. […] In the tradition of Alice Munro’s “Royal Beatings” and Barbara Gowdy’s “Disneyland,” Leslie’s lovely-but-sad depiction of helpless innocence is managed with a perfectly sure hand.”
—Brett Josef Grubisic, The Toronto Star
‘We All Need to Eat’ is a collection of linked stories from award-winning author Alex Leslie that revolves around Soma, a young Queer woman in Vancouver. Through thoughtful and probing narratives, each story chronicles a sea change in Soma’s life. Lyrical, gritty, and atmospheric, Soma’s stories refuse to shy away from the contradictions inherent to human experience, exploring one young person’s journey through mourning, escapism, and the search for nourishment.
I am a poet and fiction writer born on unceded Musqueam territory in Vancouver; my heritage is English and Ashkenazi Jewish from Ukraine. My chapbook of microfictions Twenty Objects For The New World was published by Nomados in 2011, followed by my collection of short stories People Who Disappear in 2012 (Freehand Books), shortlisted for a Lambda Award for debut fiction. In 2014, my collection of prose poems The things I heard about you, an experiment in procedural writing, was published by Nightwood Editions (blewointment series) and was nominated for the 2014 Robert Kroetsch Award for innovative poetry and for a ReLit Award – it’s available through the publisher here. My collection of stories We All Need to Eat was published by Book*hug in Fall 2018 and was shortlisted for a 2019 BC Book Prize for fiction (the Ethel Wilson prize) and was named a Top 10 book of 2018 by Now Magazine and a fiction pick of the year by 49th Shelf. My next book, Vancouver for Beginners (poems), will be published by Book*hug in Fall 2019 – you can read about it and pre-order it here. My writing has won a CBC Literary Award for fiction, a Gold National Magazine Award for creative non-fiction, and fiction awards from Matrix and Prairie Fire and has been published in Granta‘s spotlight issue on Canadian contemporary literature, the Journey Prize anthology, Best Canadian Poetry in English and Best Canadian Stories. I received the 2015 Dayne Ogilvie Award from the Writers’ Trust of Canada for emerging LGBT*Q2S writers. I was shortlisted for the 2018 ARC poem of the year award for my poem ‘The Purity Detector” and you can read the poem here.’ I have been a guest fiction mentor at the Banff Centre for the Arts and a Writer-in-Residence for the Vancouver International Writers Festival’s school outreach program. I am currently writing a novel.
I live in the Vancouver area and can be reached at <email@example.com>. I read regularly in and around the lower mainland; feel free to email me if you’d like me to read at your event. Please note that if you send me an email with a large attachment, Gmail will filter it out. Yes, I really should be able to fix this, but, you know, the obnoxious aleatory nature of technology and fate.
Thank you for reading and if you are a writer, good luck with your work.