Roslyn Muir

roslynInterviewed by Jackson Runkle.

Roslyn Muir is a screenwriter, novelist, story editor, and teacher. She is an MFA graduate of the UBC Creative Writing program and has a BFA in Theatre from Simon Fraser University. She grew up enjoying science fiction and is the recipient of the prestigious Praxis screenplay award. She has recently produced a dram film, The Birdwatcher and has written two movies of the week, Anatomy of Deception and Reluctant Witness.

I wanted to interview Muir for three reasons: she has succeeded in writing screenplays in a variety of genres, she is currently developing more, and she manages to do all of this with a family while teaching aspiring screenwriters. That’s what I consider a triple threat. I was fortunate enough to sit down and interview her in person.

How did you become a screenwriter?

My background is really varied. In school I didn’t start out wanting to be a writer. I was really into theatre, and I wanted to be an actor. That’s what I did, I went to SFU and did a BFA in Theatre. I was a performer in both film and theatre. I did a bit of writing, I wrote some plays and performed in them myself. [Read more…]

Missla Libsekal

(Photo Credit: Florent Meng)

(Photo Credit: Florent Meng)

Interviewed by Joy Richu

Missla Libsekal is the founder and editor of, a journal dedicated to contemporary art and design.  A young woman with a keen curiosity about the world, Missla Libeskal was born in Ethiopia, moved to Swaziland and then to Canada, after which she lived in Japan for ten years. She has since lived in New York, and is now settled back in Vancouver, Canada.

I first met Missla during one of the UBC Africa Awareness Initiative Conference Week events, where she led a discussion on art and culture, and their value within conversations about the African continent. Missla graciously agreed to chat with me via Skype! Here are the fruits of our delightful conversation.

When we met a few weeks ago, you mentioned that you began your career in writing having studied a completely different field in university. Could you share a bit about that? What was your university focus? What inspired you to become a writer, and to create an online magazine?

I studied business and management in school, and later worked as a project manager. For ten years I lived in Tokyo, where I worked in a technology company. While there, I encountered front-end designers who were working on all sorts of different concepts and visual treatments, and that was really the first window that I had into storytelling. Even though it was in a visual and interactive manner, I became really enchanted by the idea of how we tell stories.

Writing was something that happened without me willing it or desiring it per se. It was more something I did because I felt it was necessary, rather than because I wanted to be a writer. To be very honest, I’m still very challenged by the term “writer.”- I think we have very classic ideas of what a writer is! All I know is that I use words to communicate. So if we think about it in those basic terms, when you put text down, it means that you’re writing. And that’s what I do. But when you’re doing digital publishing, there are many other elements to play with. There is text, there is audio, there is the interactive aspect as well as moving images, but I see them all as the same thing.

[Read more…]

Mary Schendlinger

MarySchendlingerBy Tristan Koster

A lot of us have dreams of writing a bestseller or that groundbreaking article, but very little of that ever comes to light without the work of accomplished editors and publishers. For more than forty years Mary Schendlinger has been editing and publishing literary works. She’s also a writer who specializes in comics and creative nonfiction, much of which has been published in the literary magazine that she co-founded: Geist.

In addition Mary is the author of Prepare to be Amazed: The Geniuses of Modern Magic, Power Parenting Your Teenager, The Little Greenish-Brown Book of Slugs and many articles, comics and reviews. She has edited books for Douglas & McIntyre, Greystone Books, Raincoast Books, Heritage House, Calypso Books, and Arsenal Pulp Press, and has worked as the editorial/production assistant and promotions manager in-house at Talonbooks and Harbour Publishing. She teaches both at UBC and SFU.

In an email correspondence she described her career as “not a very commercially successful one” but Mary has been able to support herself and her family and her path reflects the kind of career that many of us could only dream of.

What got you started writing?

I don’t know because I’ve been writing for as long as I can remember. I was just one of those kids who was always writing stories. There are some comics that I made; I thought they were just little pictures with words on them. Many years later I found out they were comics. I didn’t know they were comics at the time, first of all because I was little, and second because my dad disapproved of comics so we didn’t have any around. It’s probably why I like them so much. My dad was a great guy but he disapproved. Later I did other things, to make a living, and I had kids. But the writing was always there.

[Read more…]