Ursula Pflug: Author

Ursula Pflug photo and cyborg glasses by Doug Back, Typewriter photo by Brion Wagner. Collage by Steev Morgan“Ursula Pflug’s writing is the kind you want to carry around with you for those days when it feels like you’re living in a strange and incomprehensible world; her work will make you feel less alone. Her words desire nothing more than to play fetch with your weirdest dreams. She creates wild inventions built of sentences that dig into your psyche and send back reports about all you never knew of the world. They are sly and joyous, scary and entrancing, profound, unsettling, amusing, and utterly – perfectly! – unique.” – Mathew Cheney

playgroundMotion Sickness - a Flash Novel by Ursula PflugHarvesting the Moon - short stories by Ursula Pflug
They Have to Take You In - Short Stories Edited by Ursula PflugThe Alphabet Stones a novel by Ursula PflugAfter the Fires a collection of short fiction by Ursula PflugGreen Music a novel by Ursula Pflug

WOTS 2023

Mentoring the Worldbuilding with Care and Intention panel at WOTS Toronto 2023 was a blast! Fellow Ptbo author Kate Story was celebrating the release of her first story collection, Ferry Back the Gifts. Superstar Cherie Dimaline chatted about Funeral Songs for Dying Girls, her new supernatural teen romance. Loved both these books! A pleasure to share the stage with two brilliant charming women.

Toronto WOTS Events May 27 and 28

Very excited to be moderating @torontoWOTS again this year. Come see us Sunday at 4 pm, on the Across the Universe stage. I’ll be chatting about Worldbuilding with Care and Intention with Cherie Dimaline, Kate Story, and Michel Jean. Can’t wait!

On Saturday I’ll be signing books at the Inanna table. Inanna, led by the much-missed Luciana Ricciutelli published my illustrated flash novel Motion Sickness (with SK Dyment), the near future novella Mountain, and the reprint story collection Seeds. Covers by the amazing Val Fulford. Copies of Seeds will also be available at Bakka-Phoenix, and copies of two of my edited anthologies, Food of My People, and Playground of Lost Toys, will be at the Exile table.

I’ll be signing from 1:30 till 2:30. I love tabling, it’s a chance to catch up with readers, fellow authors, and friends. Sometimes all 3 at once! Hope to see you.

Coaching and Mentoring 2023

I mentor fiction authors, helping with character, structure, setting, plot, dialogue and revision. I have worked as a substantive editor on novels and short stories and have helped both emerging and mid-career authors publish in Canadian and international literary and genre markets. I’m passionate about working with emerging voices and established authors exploring new territory. It’s work I’ve done all along, but the pandemic brought increased interest, and I’m taking on new clients for this winter.

A client in 2021 won a Vancouver-based national award for best novel manuscript and another received 25K in Canada Council funding to complete a third draft.

I have taught or co-taught Cont Ed creative writing for decades at Trent University, Loyalist College, and at community and artist-run centres and literary festivals including the San Miguel de Allende Writers Conference. My extensive experience as a workshop instructor, anthology editor, and internationally published short fiction author has deepened and expanded my coaching. I have never forgotten how much courage sharing can require; my commentary is gentle, enthusiastic, and focused. My clients have published in paying genre and literary venues in Canada and the US, have won awards, and have received arts council grants. It’s always a joy to share in a client’s success!

Ursula Pflug is author of the novels Green Music, The Alphabet Stones, Motion Sickness (a flash novel illustrated by SK Dyment); the story collections After the Fires, Harvesting the Moon, and Seeds, and the novellas Mountain and Down From. She edited the anthologies They Have to Take You In, Playground of Lost Toys (with Colleen Anderson) and Food of My People (with Candas Jane Dorsey). Her short stories and nonfiction about books and art have appeared for decades in Canada, the US and the UK, in award-winning genre and literary venues including Strange Horizons, Postscripts, Lightspeed, Fantasy, Leviathan, LCRW, Now Magazine, Bamboo Ridge, The New York Review of Science Fiction and many more. Her books have been endorsed by luminaries including Matthew Cheney, Charles De Lint, Candas Jane Dorsey, Leanne Betasamosake Simpson, Heather Spears, Jan Thornhill, Jeff VanderMeer, and Tim Wynne-Jones.

Her short stories have been taught in universities in Canada and India, and she has collaborated extensively with filmmakers, playwrights, choreographers, and installation artists. Pflug has won small press awards in the US from Dark Regions and Rose Secrest and has been a finalist at home for the ReLit, Aurora, and KM Hunter Awards, as well as the Three-Day-Novel and Descant Novella Contests. She is a Pushcart nominee. Her work has been funded by The Ontario Arts Council, the Canada Council for the Arts and The Laidlaw Foundation. Visit her on social media @ursulapflug


Ursula Pflug’s insightful and intuitive teaching methods helped hone my work. Her feedback transformed me from an amateur explorer of creative writing into a published author and poet. My work has appeared in several paying pro and semi-pro markets in Canada and the US, including a speculative short story that received several glowing reviews.
– Tapanga Koe

Ursula Pflug agreed to take me on for coaching even when the first chapters I sent her were barely readable. With immense patience, thoughtful suggestions, and meaningful pointers she guided me from a nascent book idea to a complete first draft, then a fully realized second draft. Her skilled coaching brought out the best in my writing and gave me confidence. With that confidence, I successfully applied for a Canada Council grant which has led to a streamlined third draft. With Ursula’s help, my novel is richer, more streamlined and something I’ll be proud to share.
– Esther Vincent

Much appreciation to Ursula Pflug, who brought engaged and wonderfully balanced energy to work with me on story evaluation and editing. She is candid, clear, and encouraging. I cannot recommend her enough and will seek her skilled and thoughtful guidance in future projects.
– Lynn Hutchinson Lee

Feast on Fantasy @Wots Toronto June 12

So excited to be back moderating at Word On The Street!
You’ll find us chatting about food and fantasy on Sunday June 12
4:00 – 5:00 pm at Across the Universe

With Sang Kim, Gord Grisenthwaite and Sifton Tracey Anipare

It’s great WOTS is back under the trees at Queen’s Park, walking distance to all my favourite Toronto people and places.

Learn More Here