“Stories have been part of my life forever. I don’t remember a time when I didn’t read, and I hardly remember a time when I didn’t write.”

Born in Winnipeg, Merilyn grew up in Brazil, where she acquired a taste for the fabulous. She is the author of twenty books, including the creative nonfiction classic, The Convict Lover, a finalist for the Governor General’s Award and inspiration for Judith Thompson’s play, Hothouse; the autobiographical story collection, The Lion in the Room Next Door; a bestselling novel, The Holding; a travel memoir, Breakfast at the Exit Café co-written with Wayne Grady; a collection of personal essays, A New Leaf; and Gutenberg’s Fingerprint: Paper, Pixels & the Lasting Impression of Books.

Woman, Watching, is Merilyn’s most recent work. It is an innovative memoir/biography of Louise de Kiriline Lawrence, a self-trained ornithologist and one of Canada’s greatest naturalists and nature writers. Margaret Atwood calls the book a “lyrical, passionate, and deeply researched portrait.”

Merilyn was the founding artistic director of Kingston WritersFest; she retired from the festival in 2014. With her husband, author Wayne Grady, she divides her time between Kingston and Mexico.

Appearing in: 1. Hot Off the Press