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Celebrate Short Story Month with a Selection of Alberta Short Stories

To celebrate International Short Story Month, Read Alberta is highlighting some of our favourite Alberta-published short stories and collections, including new titles we can’t wait to be released! Borrow or purchase these stories from an Alberta public library or your local independent bookstore and Read Alberta!

By Zubair Ahmad; Trans. Anne Murphy

In this poignant and meditative collection of short stories, Zubair Ahmad captures the lives and experiences of the people of the Punjab, a region divided between India and Pakistan. The contradictions and betrayals of this region’s history reverberate through the stories, evident in the characters, their circumstances, and sometimes their erasure. Skillfully translated from Punjabi by Anne Murphy, Grieving for Pigeons: Twelve Stories of Lahore is an essential contribution to the wider recognition of the Punjabi language and its literature.

Grieving for Pigeons: Twelve Stories of Lahore

Zubair Ahmad

Published: May 31, 2022 by Athabasca University Press
ISBN: 9781771992817

Ed. Ana Ruiz Aguirre and Liuba Gonzalez de Armas

Beyond the Gallery: An Anthology of Visual Encounters is a multilingual and multi-genre anthology showcasing emerging and established talents within the Hispanic Canadian community. Featuring a broad range of writings on visual culture by Spanish-speaking contributors, this expansive volume weaves together a labyrinth of visual experiences through intersecting and diverging pieces of fiction, creative nonfiction, journalism, and academic research.

Cover of Beyond the Gallery - geometric pattern with mustard yellow, tomato red, sky blue, peach and maroon colour blocksBeyond the Gallery: An Anthology of Visual Encounters

Ana Ruiz Aguirre (CA)  Liuba Gonzalez de Armas  (CA)

Published: Oct 10, 2021 by Laberinto Press
ISBN: 9781777085919

By Leslie Greentree

Forthcoming in September 2022, Not the Apocalypse I Was Hoping For is a collection of vividly drawn, deeply engaging short stories from award-winning author Leslie Greentree. Dark, often funny, satirical, political, personal, and tender, these stories take us to funerals, protests, art galleries, the dark side of the service industry, and through cities on fire. Readers drawn to rich prose and gut-wrenching “aha!” moments will devour these stories and should set a reminder for this collection’s release date.

Not the Apocalypse I Was Hoping For

Leslie Greentree (CA)

Published: Sep 15, 2022 by University of Calgary Press
ISBN: 9781773853697

By Karen Hofmann

In this provocative collection of short stories, Karen Hofmann creates characters who struggle to connect or disconnect from entanglements and relationships. With ironic accuracy and sensuous imagery, Hofmann considers a range of human foibles: a newlywed couple who transform into feral beasts during the hardships of a remote research expedition; backbiting faculty members who strip down during a post-conference BBQ; a heretical nun who explores the possibility of a new life by imaginatively excavating the fossils of BC’s Burgess Shale; and an ambitious bylaw officer determined to make her mark on the city’s streets.


Karen Hofmann (CA)

Published: May 01, 2019 by NeWest Press
ISBN: 9781988732565

Ed. Jerry Haig

In Porcupines to Polar Bears, Jerry Haigh shares his adventures as a wildlife veterinarian. Leaving a clinic at the base of spectacular Mount Kenya in Africa for the flat lands of the Canadian prairies, this collection details the amazing stories of Haigh’s work with wild animals at the Forestry Farm Zoo in Saskatchewan. These heart-warming and exciting stories describe a time when being a wildlife veterinarian was a rare occupation!

Porcupines to Polar Bears: Adventures of a Wildlife Veterinarian

Jerry Haigh (CA)

Published: Sep 15, 2016 by Dragon Hill Publishing
ISBN: 9781896124612

By Jaysen Flett-Paul

Jaysen’s Story is a short story in the “Finding Wakâ” series from publisher, Eschia Books. When author Jaysen Flett-Paul loses his mother in a violent shooting, he considers suicide to stem his anger and grief. Even though he doesn’t think it will help, he agrees to let community Elders guide him through sweat lodge ceremonies and a Sundance. Supported by other participants—and Wakâ— he finds his spirit and has a message for other youth who may think there is no way out of grief, sadness, and anger.

Jaysen’s Story

Jaysen Flett-Paul (CA)

Published: Sep 15, 2020 by Eschia Books
ISBN: 9781926696829

By Sunflower Paul

Also in the “Finding Wakâ” series from Eschia Books is the short story, Sunflower’s Story, from author Sunflower Paul. While learning how to cope in a blended family, Sunflower faces intolerance at her new city school, something she has never experienced in her classes on the rez. Stressed to the limit and suffering from extreme anxiety after a car accident, she thinks about ending it all. When her grandfather suggests she try a fast on the land, Sunflower doubts she can deal with the hunger and isolation; but she emerges from the ceremony having found her higher self and Wakâ.

Sunflower’s Story

Sunflower Paul (CA)

Published: Sep 15, 2020 by Eschia Books
ISBN: 9781926696843

By Kasia Van Schaik

Kasia Van Schaik’s debut story collection follows the journey of Charlotte Ferrier, a child of divorce raised by a single mother in a small town in British Columbia after moving from South Africa. Written in startling, poetic prose, We Have Never Lived On Earth captures the feelings and experiences of being a woman: physical and psychological threat, creativity, disappointment, objectification, and desire. These powerful portraits of female interiority balance nostalgia, fear, and hope for the future as they tell of the struggle to understand what it means to live on earth.

We Have Never Lived On Earth

Kasia Van Schaik (CA)

Published: Oct 01, 2022 by University of Alberta Press
ISBN: 9781772126280

By Georgina Beaty

The Party Is Here introduces readers to an exciting new voice in Canadian fiction, Georgina Beaty! These edgy and thoroughly original stories are set “five minutes in the future,” a version of our current reality where the effects of climate change are pushed to the forefront. Through stories about young women grappling with climate, fertility, and their relationships with each other, Beaty offers a bold, nuanced look at our turbulent times, fearlessly probing the ambitions and confusions of her generation. Wholly unexpected yet wildly entertaining, The Party Is Here slants the world to speak to the uncanny truth of modern life.

The Party Is Here

Georgina Beaty (CA)

Published: Sep 27, 2021 by Freehand Books
ISBN: 9781988298931

By Carrie Schiffler

From the Corner of Bad and Ass: True Stories is a collection of author and actor Carrie Schiffler’s memories about growing up in welfare housing to absentee and alcoholic parents. Throughout these heart-wrenching and often-hilarious stories, we cheer her on as she fights to survive domestic violence, sexual abuse, and cycles of poverty and addiction — all before her 18th birthday. Prepare to laugh at her attempts to earn the attention she craves and prepare to cry over the inappropriate attention she receives.

From the Corner of Bad and Ass: True Stories

Carrie Schiffler (CA)

Published: May 01, 2022 by Durvile Publications
ISBN: 9781988824819