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The Founding College of the University of Toronto

One-on-One with Barker Fairley Distinguished Visitor Thea Lim

Thea Lim (photo credit: Layne Beckner Grime)

In 2022-23, the UC Writing Centre is offering a special opportunity for students interested in creative writing. UC's Barker Fairley Distinguished Visitor for 2022-23, award-winning fiction writer and essayist Thea Lim, is available to meet with UC students as well as students enrolled in a UC program course in free fifty-minute one-on-one sessions in fall and spring terms.

Thea Lim is available to meet with students seeking

  • immediate feedback on a short piece of narrative prose (fiction or nonfiction)
  • immediate feedback on an outline of a long-form piece of storytelling, whether a novel, a short fiction collection, a narrative nonfiction project, or a story idea for theater or film/tv
  • general advice on the writing life, including applying for grants, submitting to literary journals, finding an agent, navigating the publishing process, pursuing an MFA
  • a place to discuss their own creative process and direction

Thea Lim's schedule in Winter 2023:

  • Monday,  Jan 23, 2-4
  • Monday, Jan 30, 2-4
  • Monday, Feb 6, 2-4

Book a meeting with Thea Lim

Make sure to register if it's your first time using the booking system. Then select the schedule BFV Fall 2022 near the top of the window.

Note: Graduates of UC or a UC program who have won a past Norma Epstein Foundation Award in Creative Writing will be able to book an appointment with the Barker Fairley Visitor. For more information, please contact the director of the UC Writing Centre.

Thea's novel An Ocean of Minutes, published by Penguin Random House, was one of only five novels shortlisted for the prestigious Giller Prize in 2018. It was also longlisted for Canada Reads and the Sunburst Award, shortlisted for the ALA Reading List for Science Fiction, and included on many Best of the Year reading lists, including that of The Globe and Mail and CBC. The novel has since been translated into three languages and optioned for television. Thea's essays, short fiction, and reviews have appeared in Granta, The Nation, The Paris Review, The Guardian, The Globe and Mail, Guernica, and Hazlitt, among other venues. Her short story “If You Start Breathing” appeared in Best Canadian Stories 2020. She has received multiple grants, fellowships, and awards for her writing, starting with first prize in The Hart House Review’s Short Story Competition when she was a U of T student. Thea has also worked as a story consultant for film and television, and she's honoured to serve on literary prize and arts council juries. 

Thea graduated from University College with a B.A. Hons summa cum laude in English Literature and Political Science in 2004. She received an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from the University of Houston in 2012. She taught at the UC Writing Centre, among other U of T centres, between 2012 and 2016. She also taught Analyzing Creative Nonfiction for two years in Innis College's Writing and Rhetoric program. Between 2017 and 2022, Thea served as professor of Creative Writing & Publishing at Sheridan College.