Emily Gillespie is a disability activist and professional daydreamer. Her work explores the themes of memory, identity and mental health journeys. She views storytelling as a tool for resisting predominant social narratives.
Emily has a BA in English, and an MA in Critical Disability Studies. Dancing with Ghosts (Leaping Lion Books, 2017) is her first novel. In 2018, she won a contest for her short-story “D is for Despair,” sponsored by the Ontario Book Publishers Organization. “No Room at the Inn,” a short-story adapted from her second novel is part of the Nothing without Us, anthology by Renaissance Press fall 2019. Her poetry can be found in several journals and anthologies. She is currently drafting her second grant funded novel.
She teaches classes that explore basic concepts of creative writing. She uses short works, such as poetry and short-stories in her classes, as well as full length manuscripts. Emily often focuses on memoir and tools for participants to tell and share their story. She also focuses on professional development skills, such as how to edit work and steps for getting published. Her classes are adapted to the demographic she is working with. She has run classes for people with mental illnesses as well as LGBTQ+ youth and has shaped the classes based on their interests.