Poetry Workshops for BIPOC Writers

Workshops will be held in the ArtSpace Board Room located at 424-100 Arthur Street from 12:00pm – 3:00pm on the following Saturdays:

  • January 26, 2019 — facilitated by Sharanpal Ruprai
  • February 9, 2019 — facilitated by Tasha Spillett
  • March 9, 2019 — facilitated by Chimwemwe Undi
  • March 23, 2019 — submissions information, facilitated by Sharanpal Ruprai

Workshops will be free for all writers who are selected to attend.
Participants will be required to attend all four workshops.

To apply, please send the following information to workshops@contemporaryverse2.ca with the subject line “BIPOC Workshops”:

Phone number:
Email address:

Has your work been published before (yes or no)?
Have you ever taken a poetry workshop and/or class before (yes or no)?

Submit 6-10 poems that you would like to workshop. They must be in word doc format with your name and date in the header of the page. Copies of these poems will be made for everyone. Poems must be in English or in English translation.   

*EXTENDED DEADLINE for applications: January 19, 2019
Selected applicants will be notified by January 20, 2019

Workshop Leaders

Dr. Sharanpal Ruprai
Dr. Ruprai is a writer and Assistant Professor of Women’s and Gender Studies at the University of Winnipeg. Ruprai’s debut poetry collection, Seva, was shortlisted for the Stephen G. Stephansson Award for Poetry by the Alberta Literary Awards in 2015. As an interdisciplinary humanities scholar, her research and teaching interests include: Indigenous and critical race feminism, religious and cultural studies and artistic practice. Currently, Ruprai is working on a collection of essays entitled Who Are You Calling a Kaur/Princess? By juxtaposing novels, plays, poetry collections, and films, the book explores issues such as religion, gender violence, and identity, within the specific context of the Canadian South Asian women’s experience.

Tasha Spillett
Tasha Spillett draws her strength from both her Nehiyaw and Trinidadian bloodlines. She is a celebrated educator, poet, and emerging scholar. Tasha is most heart-tied to contributing to community-led work that centres on land and water defence, and the protection of Indigenous women and girls. Tasha is currently working on her PhD in Education through the University of Saskatchewan, where she holds a Vanier Canada Award. Tasha Spillett’s graphic novel, Surviving the City, is one book in the Debwe Series and tells a story of kinship, resilience, cultural resurgence, and the anguish of a missing loved one.

Chimwemwe Undi
Chimwemwe Undi is a performance and page poet living and writing as a guest on Treaty One in Winnipeg, Manitoba. Her work has appeared on stages at the Canadian Festival of Spoken Word and the Edinburgh International Book Festival, and in the pages of Room Magazine, Arc Poetry Magazine, and CV2, among others. She holds an MA in linguistics from York University. Her debut chapbook, The Habitual Be, was published by University of Nebraska Press in 2017.