Arc Poetry Magazine
Snow Day Poem“, which won the Reader’s Choice Award is live and in print! Look for it out in the wild.







Float and Scurry featured in…

CBC Books·Fall Book Preview
23 collections of Canadian poetry to watch for this fall…

“Heather Birrell’s ambitions are thrown off by the surreal arrival of characters like Mr. T, Joni Mitchell, Fidel Castro and her mother in Float and Scurry, her debut poetry collection. The book explores the pursuit of writing, libraries, well-meaning friends and family and the death of the planet with humour and heart.”


Back to School Yoga & Writing Retreat In Prince Edward County: September 27-29th, 2019

The Birrell sisters believe in making time and space for our messy, mysterious, creative selves. Come experience a weekend free of city noise, inhibition, and distraction. We’ll eat great food, stretch our bodies, and stretch our writing muscles too.

This just might be the school of your dreams!



I will be teaching Creative Writing Introduction at the Summer Writing School: U of T School of Continuing Studies.
The details…
July 8-12, 9:30-2:30 – University of Toronto – St. George Campus
Improve your writing skills in a five-day intensive workshop. Part of the U of T Summer Writing School, this course introduces you to a wider writing community working in many different genres. Part of each class is devoted to some aspect of literary technique (character, setting, plot, point of view, structure or revision) and the rest is a workshop session where supportive and constructive feedback will help you focus, polish and deepen your work.
Summer Writing School: U of T School of Continuing Studies.

*Snow Day Poem  – Arc Poetry Magazine’s  2019 Poem of The Year Shortlist.

*Mad Hope has been nominated for an ‘Overlookie Bookie’ as part of the CBC Bookie Awards.  If you are a person who is okay with survivor-style book-boosting, then please go vote in this and other categories for books you deem deserving.  If voting for stories feels weird to you, then put your lit-loving energies into buying or borrowing books that turn your readerly crank.

Scroll down to end of list to find Mad Hope (I kind of like the idea of Mad Hopeat the bottom of the list — like, we need it, but we sometimes don’t remember until the last minute to scrawl it down, y’know?).

*I will be teaching Short Fiction: Master Class at the University of Toronto School of Continuing Studies beginning September 20th.  If you have some experience writing short fiction and are jonesing to improve your craft, please come join us!

*Hey, high school teachers!  My essay, ‘The Mr. Shredder Man’ is available as part of the digital ilit series for high school students!  Some really great selections here.  Check it out!

*Miette and Mad Hope:  The caramel-voiced wonder has recorded another one of my stories, ‘Drowning Doesn’t Look Like Drowning’!  I feel so honoured.

*Mad Hope May Blog Tour has begun!

*  Mad Hope is reviewed by Dory Cerny in the May issue of Quill & Quire, on newsstands now!  Here’s a taste:  “Birrell peels back the layers of civility to expose the dark and messy bits we all hide, but she does so with such finesse that we are simultaneously captivated and repulsed by the intimacy of it all.”

*  Exciting news!  My story ‘Frogs’ is available as a free download on Kobo.  Check it out!  And share it with your pals.

*  Psst!  I will be teaching Short Fiction: Introduction at the School of Continuing Studies, University of Toronto, beginning April 10.  Short stories for spring!  Pass it on!

*  We have a cover, designed by Ingrid Paulson!  I am so pleased with it.  Ribbit.

*  Mad Hope will be available in mid-March 2012! Please look out for it in your local bookstore or at Coach House Books.