Roz Nay

Creative Writing

Roz Nay is the bestselling author of Our Little Secret, which won the Douglas Kennedy Prize for best foreign thriller in France, and was nominated for both the Kobo Emerging Writer Prize for Mystery and the Arthur Ellis Best First Crime Novel Award in 2018.

Her subsequent thrillers, Hurry Home and The Hunted, were both nominated for the Crime Writers of Canada Best Thriller awards (2021, 2022). She has a new thriller, The Offing, coming May 2024 with Penguin. Roz taught high school English for eight years, has taught creative writing to adults at Selkirk College and Studio 88 in Nelson, and has mentored aspiring writers privately since 2022. 

Roz’s advice for Writer’s Studio applicants

What are you looking for in your workshop group?

Writers who are open and committed to growing and improving, even when it’s vulnerable. A supportive group that will hold itself to the highest standards, dig deep into each other’s characters, be invested in each other’s stories, and listen when anyone feels like they’re stuck. I also want it to be fun. Let’s not forget that.

What do you look for when reading an applicant's submission?

For me, I want to get a sense of excitement that comes through in the work, and I want to know why they’re writing it, what they want from it, how they’d define their writing dreams. Have they been trying to find a way into this idea for a while, or is it brand new, and they can’t stop thinking about it? The pathway to applying for this course is interesting to me, and I’d love to hear a paragraph or two about that. I’d also like to see a page of polished work in the portfolio, and a brief mention of what it is they’ll bring to the cohort (if the two pieces are separate). From there, I should be able to tell if something sparks—and if I’m the right mentor for their journey.