About Kelsey, the Writer

Kelsey is a Vancouver-based writer, educator, performer, and graduate of the UBC Creative Writing Program. She has had her work featured on the East Van Poetry Salon’s Best Poems of 2016 list¹, the 2014 CBC Non-Fiction Prize Longlist² , the 2014 Vancouver Fringe Festival, Nineteenquestions.com³, and local anthology Stay Solid! A Radical Handbook for YouthKelsey is the 2015, 2016, and 2017 Writer-in-Residence for the Minerva Foundation’s Learning to Lead program.

Beginning her writing career with a two-year column for the South Delta Leader (now the Delta Optimist)Kelsey discovered spoken word poetry in the summer of 2006 and instantly felt a kinship with the form. In 2009, she was one of six poets chosen for the Cultch’s IGNITE! Spoken Word Mentorship Program, . In the same year, she won a spot on the Vancouver Youth Poetry Slam Team and began travelling B.C. with poetry group The Candelabra Collective, opening for such artists as Brendan McLeod and such events as the Campbell Bay Music Festival.  She is the author of four self-published chapbooks: Carnival Wire (2010), Carnival Dark (2011), Torches (2013), and twenty-three/thirty (2017).


A former Editorial Assistant for Prism International Magazine¹, Kelsey currently works as the Communications Coordinator for the Community Arts Council of Vancouver², and is a long-time host of Open Mic at the Lyceum, a monthly event at Christianne’s Lyceum of Literature and Art³ in which she strives to foster an inclusive space for artists of all disciplines and backgrounds. Since 2016, Kelsey has also worked in various roles for the Verses Festival of Words, supporting the growth of Vancouver’s largest alternative literary festival.

Kelsey is in her ninth year of working with the Vancouver Poetry House’s WordPlay program, facilitating performance poetry workshops in high schools across the province. She also designs, develops, and runs poetry programming for corporations, working with organizations such as the Minerva Foundation and Refinery Leadership Partners to facilitate accessible explorations of poetry at the organizational leadership level. More information about bookings can be found here.


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