Maureen Jennings, writer (born 23 April 1939 in Birmingham, UK). A talented writer with a keen eye for setting, character and dialogue, Maureen Jennings has helped put historical crime fiction on the Canadian literary map. She has published three series of novels as well as nonfiction, short stories and stage plays, and is best known for her Detective Murdoch series of historical crime novels. Inspired by the career of Ontario detective John Wilson Murray, the Murdoch books have been adapted into the popular, long-running television series Murdoch Mysteries (2008–).
Lucy Maud Montgomery, OBE, writer (born 30 November 1874 in Clifton (now New London), PEI; died 24 April 1942 in Toronto, ON). Lucy Maud Montgomery is arguably Canada’s most widely read author. Her first novel, Anne of Green Gables (1908), became an instant bestseller and has remained in print for more than a century, making the character of Anne Shirley a mythic icon of Canadian culture. Montgomery’s body of work — more than 500 short stories, 20 novels, two poetry collections and numerous journal and essay anthologies — has sold an estimated 50 million copies worldwide. Anne of Green Gables alone has been translated into at least 36 languages as well as braille, and been adapted dozens of times in various mediums. Montgomery was named an Officer of the Order of the British Empire and the Literary and Artistic Institute of France, and declared a Person of National Historic Significance in Canada.
Leonard Norman Cohen, poet, novelist, singer, songwriter (born 21 September 1934 in Montréal, QC; died 7 November 2016 in Los Angeles, California). Leonard Cohen was one of the most iconic Canadian artists of the 20th century. A sage, mystic, bohemian and romantic, he built an acclaimed body of literary work and a revered career in pop music. In his poetry, novels and music, he constantly probed the human condition, exploring themes of love, loss, death and his commitment to his art. As a poetic and unlikely pop star, his narrow-ranged, gruff voice, which deepened and darkened with age, and his reliance on simple, singsong melodies were complimented by the intense imagery and depth of his lyrics. A Companion of the Order of Canada, he was inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame, the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame, the US Songwriters Hall of Fame, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Folk Music Walk of Fame. He also received the Glenn Gould Prize, eight Juno Awards, a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award and numerous other honours.
Ken Mitchell, playwright, novelist, short story writer, poet, actor, teacher, scriptwriter (b at Moose Jaw, Sask 13 Dec 1940). Mitchell grew up on a farm near Moose Jaw, and attended the University of Saskatchewan, Regina; while a student, he began to write stories and radio plays for the CBC.