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Nova Scotia's Sandra Murdock Wins CBC Non-fiction Prize with Her "Treasure" of a Story

Sandra Murdock, of Dartmouth, Nova Scotia has won the CBC Nonfiction grand prize for her piece, Easy Family DinnersMurdock beat out more than 2000 other English language submissions from across the country with her story of simmering family tension, which contains a heart-wrenching, unexpected moment at its close.

As the grand prize winner, she will receive $6,000 from the Canada Council for the Arts, publication on CBC Books, and a writing residency at the prestigious Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity.

 The 2018 jury, composed of writers Scaachi Koul, Graeme Wood, and Kyo Maclear, praised Murdock's piece, calling it "a small treasure: a model of controlled narrative, irony, and poignant surprise." 

Born to a military family, Sandra Murdock grew up across Canada and in Germany. After graduate studies in Belfast, Northern Ireland, and St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador, Murdock left academia to work with newcomers to Canada. She currently teaches English at an immigrant settlement agency. She has published poetry in Echolocation and The Antigonish Review, and is currently working on a creative nonfiction collection about her experiences with an alcoholic loved one. She lives with her son in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, on the unceded traditional territory of the Mi’kmaw people. 

The four runners-up for the 2018 CBC Nonfiction Prize will each receive $1000 from the Canada Council for the Arts. They are: Lily Chang (Montreal, Quebec) for If I wax poetic the pain feels worthwhile; Kat Main (Calgary, Alberta) for How to Catch a Nightcrawler; Anastasia McEwen (Fergus, Ontario) for Acceleration; and Lee Thomas (Fredericton, New Brunswick) for True Trans.

CBC Books also announced Diane Landry as the winner of the French-language grand prize for Adieu chacal. For more information, go to under the “Prix du récit” tab.

For more information about the CBC literary prizes, including deadlines for the poetry and short story award submissions, visit CBC Books