We are pleased to announce the appointment of writer, editor and teacher Damian Tarnopolsky as the 2016/17 Barbara Moon/Ars Medica Editorial Fellow at Massey College.


The Editorial Fellow leads a creative writing seminar for students in medicine, nursing, or any of the allied health disciplines at the University of Toronto. The workshop explores writing and reflecting on narratives as a way to improve therapeutic relationships for health practitioners and patients. The Fellow also serves as “editor-in -residence” at Massey College, offering editing consultation and writing mentorship to residents and fellows of the College.


Damian Tarnopolsky previously served as the Barbara Moon/Ars Medica Editorial Fellow in 2014-15. He is the author of two books: the novel Goya's Dog, a finalist for the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize and the Amazon.ca First Novel Award, and the short fiction collection Lanzmann and Other Stories, which was nominated for the ReLit Award. He earned his Ph.D. at the University of Toronto, and has taught writing and literature at the School of Continuing Studies, Humber College and the Junction Writes workshop. A former editor at Random House of Canada, he is the proprietor of Slingsby and Dixon, an editorial services company in Toronto, and Managing Editor of the Toronto Review of Books.


Now entering its sixth year, the Barbara Moon/Ars Medica Editorial Fellowship was established by journalist Wynne Thomas in memory of his wife, Barbara Moon, one of Canada's  most celebrated editors. It is jointly supported by Massey College and by the Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto.


The Storytelling initiative is an ongoing collaboration between Massey College and Ars Medica - A Journal of Medicine, The Arts and Humanities, in conjunction with the University of Toronto Health, Arts and Humanities Program.


A call for student applications to enter the workshop will follow.


Allan Peterkin MD, Professor of Psychiatry, University of Toronto



Write your Encounter

Encounters articles in CMAJ Humanities give patients and health care practitioners room to reflect on their experience with illness or medicine. Encounters are memoirs that become narratives through a turn of the poetic possibility and a nod to literature, as well as imagination, storytelling and a creative exploration of metaphoric spaces. Together, these provide a sliver of understanding about life. 


Patient and colleague confidentiality must be respected; therefore, signed releases are required from anyone who may self-identify. Narratives should be between 750 and 1400 words. All submissions are peer reviewed. 


Submit online at https://mc.manuscriptcentral.com/cmaj 

or contact Barbara Sibbald, Editor, News and Humanities (barbara.sibbald@cmaj.ca), to discuss ideas




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The Mary Seeman Humanities Award: 2017
This award is intended to encourage creative and scholarly activity in the interface between the humanities and issues related to mental illness and emotional well-being. The award is open to students from Dentistry, Kinesiology and Physical Education, Medicine (including undergraduate, residents and fellows), Nursing, Medical Radiation Sciences, Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy, Pharmacy, Physical Therapy, Physician Assistant, Social Work, Speech-Language Pathology at the University of Toronto, as well as students from medical humanities disciplines including literary studies, history, bio-ethics and disability studies. The award is based on documented evidence of completed work of artistic and/or scholarly merit that contributes to a better understanding of the human condition. Submissions will be judged on the basis of originality, creativity and relevance to mental health and illness.  Please note only one submission per applicant will be accepted.

The following guidelines are suggested to assist applicants in preparation of their submissions.

a)        The submission must be sole-authored and previously unpublished. To qualify for inclusion the submission must be

i.                     a scholarly essay in the area of humanities and mental illness

ii.                    a personal memoir, medical illness narrative

iii.                  a short story

iv.                 a description of program development that integrates humanities and mental health

 All above formats may be illustrated, if appropriate, by drawings, photography or video
 but the core of the submission must be a well-written narrative

Word content of submitted narratives should be no greater than 4000 words.






If applicants are uncertain about the suitability of a submission, they are encouraged to contact any of the committee members. Submissions will be judged by the committee, with outside consultation where appropriate.


Deadline for submissions for next year is May 29, 2017. The award consists of a certificate and cheque for 500.00


Mary Seeman Committee   

Dr. Ron Ruskin (Chair) Mount  Sinai Hospital         ronaldruskinmd@aol.com)   tel 416-928-0675
Dr. Rex Kay                               Mount Sinai Hospital                              416-966-5285

Dr. Mary V. Seeman                 University of Toronto                              mary.seeman@utoronto.ca

Dr. Paul Westlind                     Mount Sinai Hospital                             416-586-4800 x8540
Prospective applications and queries should be addressed to: Dr. Ron Ruskin Department of Psychiatry (ronaldruskinmd@aol.com  Mount Sinai Hospital 600 University Avenue, Toronto, M5G 1X5