stories in various forms

“A magnetic collection that must be read over and over.” –Kirkus, review of We All Need to Eat

“In the tradition of Alice Munro’s “Royal Beatings” and Barbara Gowdy’s “Disneyland,” the story’s lovely-but-sad depiction of helpless innocence is managed with a perfectly sure hand.” –Brett Josef Grubisic, The Star

“How small can a poem be? If you’re Alex Leslie, it can be as small as an elegant, tear-your-heart-out line or even a perfect single word.” –Herizons

Hello, fellow earthling.

I am a writer born on Musqueam territory in Vancouver, BC. My heritage is English and Ashkenazi Jewish from Ukraine. My writing spans poetry and fiction and I am most interested in the spaces in between.

I have published four books and one chapbook: the short story collection People Who Disappear (Freehand 2012), the prose poetry collection The things I heard about you (Nightwood 2014), the short story collection We All Need to Eat (Book*hug 2018), the poetry collection Vancouver for Beginners (Book*hug, 2019) and the chapbook of microfictions 20 Objects for the New World (Nomados, 2011). To buy my books, go to the ‘Books’ page.

Image Credit: Sheryl MacKay, North by Northwest, CBC Radio, 2020

The small print:

I have received a CBC Literary Award for short fiction, a gold National Magazine Award for personal journalism, the Dayne Ogilvie Award from the Writers Trust of Canada, and Vancouver for Beginners was awarded the 2020 Western Canada Jewish Book Award for poetry. My books have been shortlisted for the BC Book Prize for best fiction (Ethel Wilson prize), the Lambda Award for best debut fiction, the Kobzar Award for contributions to Ukrainian-Canadian writing, and the Robert Kroetsch award for innovative poetry. I’ve taught as a guest fiction mentor at the Banff Centre for the Arts. I facilitated life-writing workshops for four years for a community writing program in homeless drop-ins, detoxes and social housing buildings.

To reach me:

Queries re. We All Need to Eat and Vancouver For Beginners can be sent to Hazel Millar at I can be reached at (things often go to Junk, so if you don’t hear back, try again!). I live in the Vancouver, BC, area. I frequently read to classrooms and my writing has been taught at universities and colleges across Canada including UBC, OISE, UVic, Kwantlen and Capilano. I am currently writing a novel.

Thank you for reading!

Reading at Type Books, Toronto.

‘All the world is a narrow bridge. The important thing is to have no fear at all.’

– Rabbi Nachman of Breslev