This year's CBC Nonfiction Prize shortlist is a treasure trove for nonfiction lovers. As creative nonfiction continues to evolve as a genre, with personal storytelling becoming more and more popular with readers, nonfiction prize lists continue to reflect a growing trend of deeply open storytelling focusing on authentic voice, personal experiences, humour, trauma, and more.
This year's shortlist features just that, with five talented writers who fit moving and thoughtful stories into the short contest length constraint. Some funny, some heart-wrenching, they were chosen from more than 2,000 submissions. Jurors Jenny Heijun Wills, M.G. Vassanji, and Tim Cook selected the longlist and shortlist and will announce the winner, who will receive $6,000 from the Canada Council for the Arts, on September 29.
2021 Finalists for the CBC Nonfiction Prize:
- "Funhouse Mirrors" by Alison Hughes (Edmonton)
- "Northern Spring" by Barbara Mackenzie (Yellowknife)
- "Umbrella" by Chanel M. Sutherland (Montreal)
- "My Summer Body" by Lee Thomas (Fredericton)
- "A Borrowed Husband" by Sarah Van Goethem (Bothwell, Ont.)
In addition to the cash prize, the winner will receive a two-week writing residency at the prestigious Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity. The four remaining finalists will each receive $1,000 from the Canada Council for the Arts.
All five of the finalists stories are available to read for free on the CBC Books website now.