“If your work doesn’t strike some people as outrageous,” says author Priscila Uppal, “it’s probably not taking the risks fundamental to creating vital, critical, necessary art.”

Sparks fly in Priscila’s new book, Cover Before Striking: Stories. The pyromaniac at the heart of the title story—winner of the Gloria Vanderbilt Short Fiction Prize—desperately uses flames to reconnect with lost lovers and family members. Characters push their lives to new levels of intensity, danger, or passion, as they test their limits and those of the world.

In 13 strong and distinctive pieces, Uppal appears to regard the short story as a superbly elastic form and an inviting opportunity to explore familiar human circumstances from fresh angles,” wrote Publishers Weekly in a Starred Review.

Sabotoge, Priscila’s provocative new book of poetry, explores private and public acts of destruction, disruption and vandalism in the 21st century—on structures, the human body, and cultural edifices.

“Audacious, irreverent, funny and, at the same time, deeply serious…Uppal has done the rare and difficult thing: she has brought a brand new voice to poetry,” wrote the Griffin Poetry Prize judges of her earlier collection, Ontological Necessities.

Priscila, a professor at York University’s Department of English, is the author of two novels, The Divine Economy of Salvation and To Whom It May Concern; ten collections of poetry; and a memoir, Projection: Encounters with My Runaway Mother, which was shortlisted for the Hilary Weston Prize and the Governor General’s Award.

She lives in Toronto with poet and critic Christopher Doda.

Appearing in 24. Explore/Experiment/Invent: Short Fiction, and 27. Writing Poetry for Grown-Ups

Website: priscilauppal.ca
Publisher’s website: www.dundurn.com/books/cover_striking