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Meet the 2017 Pixelles Writing Group Participants!

First, we’d like to thank every single person who took the time to apply to the writing group — especially those who applied for the second time. There were a large number of talented applicants, and we hope everyone who can’t take part will find other ways to share their stories!

Now, without further ado… we present this year’s Pixelles Writing Incubator participants!

In six months, these women will have produced five pieces of game writing and spent many hours critiquing each other’s work. The act of writing well is a marathon, not a sprint, and we are excited by their level of dedication to the craft.

Steph Caskenette
Steph is a graduate student at McGill University researching how narrative strategies and worldbuilding can be used in video game development to obscure hardware limitations, specifically within classic text adventure game formats. In her spare time, she tends to her many darling and precious plants, which are so dear to her she can’t leaf them alone.
Jenn Guzzo
Organizer, mom-friend, Hufflepuff. Lover of point-and-click adventure games, epic trailer music, and colour-coded lists. When she isn’t busy attempting to bake cookies (and probably burning them), Jenn might be found re-watching Jurassic Park for the millionth time. Has a theory that in a past life, she was a small fish eaten by a big fish.
Laure Henri
After an MA in creative writing, Laure is now a first-year PhD student in French literature. In between papers, proposals, and grant applications, she enjoys running, watching too much Netflix, walking her dog and playing video games. If the situation presents itself, she will always choose to play as a good character, and often annoys everyone by trying to be nice to NPCs.
Betty Robertson
Hailing from BC, Betty Robertson considers herself a ‘Jane of All Trades’ when it comes to creative arts. She has a background in film, theatre, drawing, animation, writing, and painting. Has two trade certificates. Casually obsessed with Scooby-Doo. Wants to be a contestant on Jeopardy. Always complaining about the romance options in Bioware games. Mostly harmless.
Ella Siemeni
Spent her whole childhood waiting to find a door to some magical fantasy world. She eventually found it in writing. Passionate about storytelling in all its forms, now with a Bachelor in Scriptwriting, she strives to one day be able to bring characters to life and lead other people to the gate of her own stories.
Katelyn MacMullin
Feminist, storyteller, and Stardew hobby farmer, Kate graduated from Concordia University with an Honors B.A. in English Lit. and Creative Writing in 2015. With a background in prose and theatre, as well as an offbeat sense of comedic timing, her passion is working on collaborative art projects. Currently, she’s enjoying working in game QA while also devoting time to her own creative projects.
Jessica Moore
Jess is a game ethics consultant, freelance writer, and co-organizer of the Association for Ethics in Games. She likes chocolate, cats, and working on projects that make the world less shitty for more people.
Caitlin Lazurka
After completing her Creative Writing degree, Caitlin has continued her love for writing as a content specialist for websites. She is always striving towards her dream job as a professional virtual farmer. Although it has not come to fruition, Caitlin has many other passions, like creating stories, playing all non-scary video games and writing about herself in third person.

Program Coordinators

Jana Sloan van Geest
Jana is a game writer at Ubisoft and a mentor to writers in the Montreal games community. Prior to joining Ubisoft, she was the writer on Ludia’s Battlestar Galactica: Squadrons, and contributed to over a hundred mobile titles as a Localization Editor at Gameloft Montreal. In addition to founding the Game Writing Group, Jana is the Pixelles Mentorship Coordinator (she just loves Pixelles!). She also served on the Board of Directors for the Mount Royal Game Society. Before moving into games, she was a director and stage manager for theatre.

Jana’s favourite Mass Effect alignment is Renegon, her XCOM motto is “When in doubt, overwatch,” and all but one character died in her Heavy Rain playthrough. After getting to know the wonderful 2016 Writing Group cohort, she is thrilled to be working with 2017’s writers!
Saleema Nawaz
Saleema Nawaz is the author of Mother Superior and Bone and Bread, which won the 2013 Quebec Writers’ Federation Paragraphe Hugh MacLennan Prize for Fiction and was selected for CBC’s Canada Reads 2016. Her fiction has appeared in many Canadian literary journals and her short story “My Three Girls,” won the 2008 Writers’ Trust of Canada/McClelland & Stewart Journey Prize. She has an M.A. in English Literature and has taught creative writing at the Banff Centre.

Saleema started writing for games in 2015 and loves the smart women she has been lucky enough to meet in the gaming industry. She was excited at the opportunity to get more involved with the Pixelles by co-coordinating the 2017 Game Writing Group.

♥ Our Supporters

GamePlay Space english logo transparent execution labs

We’d like to extend a big thank you to Execution Labs, Gameplay Space, and StoryBundle for supporting the Pixelles Writing Group. Without their help, this program wouldn’t be nearly as amazing!

Posted in Mentorship, News, Writers Group

Pixelles is a non-profit initiative committed to helping more people make and change games. We're based in Montreal, and have already succeeded in building a supportive community of game creators, both hobbyist and professional.

E-mail: info@pixelles.ca
Twitter: @pixellesmtl
Facebook: Pixelles Group