Canadian writer Heather Birrell is the author of two story collections, Mad Hope (one of the Globe and Mail‘s Top 23 Fiction Picks for 2012) and I know you are but what am I?. The Toronto Review of Books called Mad Hope “completely enthralling, and profoundly grounded in an empathy for the traumas and moments of relief of simply being human“. Her work has been honoured with the Journey Prize for short fiction and the Edna Staebler Award for creative non-fiction and has been shortlisted for both National and Western Magazine Awards. Birrell’s stories have appeared in many North American journals and anthologies, including The New Quarterly, Descant, Hobart, and Toronto Noir. Recently, her essay about motherhood –its joys and discontents — appeared in The M Word<.em>, an anthology that broadens the conversation about what mothering means today.