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.

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

My books include: 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). My writing has been published in literary journals in Canada, the US and the UK, has been anthologized by the prestigious Journey Prize anthology, was included in Granta‘s spotlight issue on Canadian literature in 2017, and will be included in the 2019/20 edition of Best Canadian Stories published by Biblioasis. Currently, I’m writing a novel.

I have received a CBC Literary Award, a gold National Magazine Award and the Dayne Ogilvie Award from the Writers Trust of Canada and 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 culture, the Western Canadian Jewish book award, and the Robert Kroetsch award for innovative poetry. I’ve taught as a guest fiction mentor at the Banff Centre for the Arts.

I can be reached at al.leslie@gmail.com (things often go to Junk, so if you don’t hear back, try again!). Anything related to Book*hug publications (reprints and readings) can be directed to Hazel Millar at hazel@bookhugpress.ca. I live in the Vancouver, BC, area.

Click the ‘stories online’ link above to read some of my work that’s available online. Thank you for reading!

Dayne Ogilvie Award ceremony. Photo credit Writers Trust of Canada.
Reading at Type Books, Toronto.
Photo credit: Hywel Tuscano.

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

– Rabbi Nachman of Breslev

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