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Ali Blythe Named Finalist for Dayne Ogilvie Prize for LGBTQ Emerging Writers

The Writers’ Trust of Canada today announced the finalists for the 2017 Dayne Ogilvie Prize for LGBTQ Emerging Writers.

Included amongst this year’s finalists is Ali Blythe for his debut poetry collection, Twoism. Part roving eye, part devotion, Twoism challenges notions of identity and self, urging readers to enter rooms that are not their own, to try on clothes and skins that are not quite theirs. The poems of the collection — achingly beautiful and erotically charged by the myth of completeness — are haunted with the gendered injuries of the past and offer hope for acceptance and escape.

Says Blythe, “Poetry has given me the ability to try on bodies other than my own. That desire — the desire to try on other bodies — has never really left me, and Twoism is about that.” Many of the poems were initially written in a hotel room and were refined over a two-year period. Says Blythe, “Over those two years, I was also transforming. A friend told me she had watched me write myself into being.”

The Dayne Ogilvie Prize is presented annually to an emerging writer who identifies as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or queer, and whose published work demonstrates great literary promise. Also named as finalists for the award are Eva Crocker and Kai Cheng Thom. They were selected by a jury composed of author Jane Eaton Hamilton, journalist Elio Iannacci, and academic Trish Salah.

The finalists will be celebrated and the winner will be announced at a ceremony on June 3, 2017 at Simon Fraser University’s Harbour Centre. The event will be part of the Writers’ Union of Canada’s OnWords Conference.  For details, please visit

Ali Blythe is the editor-in-chief of The Claremont Review. He completed a residency at the Banff Centre and a writing degree at the University of Victoria, receiving the Candis Graham Writing Scholarship from the Lambda Foundation for excellence in writing and support of the queer community.

Twoism was published to critical acclaim by Goose Lane Editions and was nominated for the 2016 Dorothy Livesay Prize.

Ali Blythe awards Dayne Ogilvie Prize LGBTQ twoism Writers' Trust

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