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Ruth E. Walker

Ruth E. Walker

Photo: Stuart Blower

The first submission by RUTH E. WALKER (she/her), author of the novel LIVING UNDERGROUND (Seraphim Editions, 2012), won first prize in Canadian Living magazine's 1996 short story contest. She built on that amazing kickstart with poetry, fiction and creative nonfiction in Canadian, US and UK publications

Ruth has delivered workshops from Moose Factory to Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario. She's visited dozens of book clubs in Ontario as well as Detroit, Michigan and Stafford, Virginia. A partner in Writescape, Ruth is a popular workshop and retreat facilitator, editor and writing coach, Ruth's taught the Creative Words elective for over 10 years at the Integrated Arts Camp of the Durham District School Board and as an artist in residence at the board, offering creative writing programs for at-risk teens.

A graduate of Trent University with a certificate in Creative Writing from the Humber School for Writers, Ruth worked as a Senior Writer/Editor for the Ontario government. She is also: a founding editor and publisher of the literary journal LICHEN Arts & Letters Preview (1998-2007); a past president and long-time member of The Writers’ Community of Durham Region (WCDR); friend of CANSCAIP and a long-serving volunteer on various non-profit arts initiatives in Durham Region and Haliburton County. 

Ruth is an eclectic writer who follows inspiration, characters and ideas onto the page. She is represented by Ali McDonald of 5 Otter Literary. She divides her time between her Oshawa home and Haliburton County cottage, and recognizes and respects that she is a settler on traditional lands of Indigenous Peoples, including First Nations and lands under the Williams Treaties. 



LIVING UNDERGROUND. 2012, Seraphim Editions


Young Adult award, Muskoka Novel Marathon for Draft manuscript from 72-hour novel writing marathon, 2014
Eligible for National Public Readings Program:


Presentation Description

I love working with high school and intermediate students, chatting about the writing life, discussing ways of tapping into creativity and exploring forms of creative expression that involve words. The workshops, visits and readings are tailored by consulting with the teacher and designed to suit the students' needs and interests. Integrating arts into the curriculum has brought me into applied math, geography, workplace English and art classrooms.

I work at a variey of levels with the following experience:

  • artist in residence with the Durham District School Board, working primarily with at-risk students at an alternative high school (2008 to 2011)
  • facilitator for a series of creative writing workshops at the board's Integrated Arts Camp in Haliburton as part of a 10-day overnight camp (2008 to present)
  • visiting author/poet in various schools' writers' craft classes and history classes (some of my work is inspired by historical events: Canada's fur trade, WWI and WWII and the Holocaust)

I quit high school in Grade 11 and only discovered my writing voice when I was nearly 40 and working on my BA. I tell students that I do these visits because when I was their age, no writers ever came to our school to talk about the profession.

I make my living as a writer (senior writer/editor for the Ontario gov't part time, plus freelance, and I teach creative writing workshops with adults) so it is valualbe for students to see writing is not all sitting in a garret writing by candlelight.

I encourage full expression and exploration in a safe and encouraging space. 

Presentation Length:
Various; depending on classroom needs
Fiction and Poetry
7 to 12
Audience Size:
Classroom or combined classrooms