Announcing the 2015 Short Prose Competition winners

Writers' Union
Press Release

Pamela van der Woude's "Bird" Wins $2500 Cash Prize The Writers' Union of Canada's 22nd Annual Short Prose Competition

The Writers' Union of Canada is pleased to announce that Pamela van der Woude has won the $2,500 cash prize for its twenty-second annual Short Prose Competition for Developing Writers, for the best story under 2,500 words, with her piece "Bird.” In addition to the winning entry, Honourable Mention goes to Lisa McLean for “How to Love a Crow.” The Union will submit the winning story and the 12 other shortlisted stories to three Canadian magazine publishers for their consideration.
Pamela van der Woude has been a keeper of words since she started writing in her first diary. This fall, she will be completing the mentorship component for the Certificate in Creative Writing Program – University of Toronto.  Pamela is currently at work on her first novel. She lives in Mississauga, Ontario.
The Short Prose Competition, established in 1993 in honour of the Union’s 20th anniversary, aims to discover, encourage, and promote new writers of short prose who are not yet published in book format, in order to provide opportunity and exposure to developing writers. This year, 19 Union members donated their time and expertise to read 394 outstanding submissions and distill them into a long list of 108 stories. These stories went on to a second round of 19 who selected the finalists to pass on to the jury: Arno Kopecky, Donna Morrissey, and Uma Parameswaran.
"Bird” by Pamela van der Woude
The jury noted that “van der Woude's lyrical protagonist casts a spell from start to finish, illuminating a world that few of us have seen or heard but all can recognize. When writers talk about voice, they are talking about stories like ‘Bird’.”
“How to Love a Crow” by Lisa McLean, Guelph, ON
  • Carrying War, Tanya Bellehumeur-Allatt, Canton de Hatley, QC
  • Call and Response, Jessica Block, Vancouver, BC
  • Black as Goth, Kara Donadt, Spruce Grove, AB
  • Dear Jackson, Susan Fairlie, Brantford, ON
  • My Mother’s Hands, Valentina Gal, Toronto, ON
  • Playing Baseball in Trees, Brian Howlett, Toronto, ON
  • Priya, Kirsten Madsen, Whitehorse, YT
  • Raspberry Pulp, Sharon Mercer, Vernon, BC
  • Without a Name, Pamela Mosher, Ottawa, ON
  • Never Going Back Again, Marelle Reid,
    St. John's, NL
  • Under the Umbrella, Robin Stone, Toronto, ON

Arno Kopecky, Donna Morrissey, and Uma Parameswaran.
Catherine Austen, Clayton Bailey, Nancy M. Bell, Ann Birch, Julie Burtinshaw, Myrl Coulter, Ann Eyerman,
P.M. Foss, Dayle Furlong, Nancy Graham, Jane Harris-Zsovan, Crystal Hurdle, Catherine Jenkins, Alexis Kienlen, Diana Kolpak, Bianca Lakoseljac, Julia Leggett, Jerry Levy, Mark R.C. Lovell, Colette Maitland, Tariq Malik, Dona Paul Massel, Hugh T. McCracken, Michael Mirolla, Terry Murray, Nerys Parry, Julie Paul, Ken Rivard, Susan Rocan, René Schmidt, Deborah Seed, Carol Shaben, Vanessa Shields, Jim Smith, Florida Ann Town, D.C. Troicuk, Christine Welldon, Susan White.
The Writers' Union of Canada is our country's national organization representing professional authors of books. Founded in 1973, the Union is dedicated to fostering writing in Canada, and promoting the rights, freedoms, and economic well-being of all writers. For more information, please visit


For additional information:
Nancy MacLeod, Membership Development & Fund Researcher
The Writers’ Union of Canada
416-703-8982 Ext. 226,