come into the
"a master of
The globe and mail
Award-winning author David Demchuk has been writing for print, stage, digital and other media for nearly 40 years. His debut horror novel The Bone Mother, published in 2017 by ChiZine Publications, was nominated for the Scotiabank Giller Prize, the Amazon First Novel Award, the Toronto Book Award and a Shirley Jackson Award in the Best Novel category. It won the 2018 Sunburst Award for Excellence in Canadian Literature of the Fantastic in the Adult Fiction category. It was listed in the Globe and Mail's 100 best books of 2017, came in at #22 in the National Post's top 99 books of the year and became a #1 bestseller on Amazon.ca.
David has a special interest in queerness and monstrosity. His Cabbagetown back yard is home to a hive of curious but quick-tempered bees. He is quietly at work on a troubling new novel. He is represented by Barbara Berson of the Helen Heller Literary Agency.
In the hypnotic cadences of fairy-tales, like secret stories passed as wisdom down the family line,
David Demchuk’s The Bone Mother whispers and warns of the dark extraordinary in all of us.
This book dazzles, capturing the reader's imagination, transcending easy labels
to appeal to anyone who loves literature. (The 2018 Sunburst Awards committee)
Demchuk is nothing if not a master of bowel-loosening terror…
Ray Conologue, the Globe and Mail
Demchuk gracefully pieces together a dark and shining mosaic of a story with unforgettable imagery and elegant, evocative prose. These stories read like beautiful and brutal nightmares, sharply disquieting, and are made all the more terrifying by the history in which they’re grounded.
Publishers Weekly (starred review) on The Bone Mother
Brilliant and totally original. One of the greatest feelings as a reader is when you feel reality shifting beneath a story, not just the narrator but the fabric of the world becoming unreliable, and Demchuk manages it.
Christopher Golden, author of Ararat, on The Bone Mother
Moving, horrifying, terrifying. A quick, enjoyable read.
Ellen Datlow, editor of The Best Horror of the Year Volume 10, on The Bone Mother
Superb… may take us further inside a murderer’s head than any dramatic character since Macbeth…
Robert Cushman, the National Post, on Stay
A groundbreaking piece…that sheds light on the experience of a woman transitioning from male to female…so tender and enlightening…
Susan G. Cole, editor of Outspoken, on Rosalie Sings Alone
Demchuk’s forthright and disturbing examination of child abuse and incest…taut drama…
Vit Wagner, Toronto Star, on If Betty Should Rise
This is sex-play with intelligence, titillation with redeeming social value…
Robert Wallace, editor of Making, Out, on Touch
Ambitious, complex and multi-layered… the wit, soul and reach of Demchuk’s drama made it worth seeing…
Nigel Hunt, Theatrum, on Mattachine
David Demchuk's disquieting Mattachine is a kind of scrapbook for the stage...a highly compelling piece of theatre.
A quiet, disturbing peek into the mind of a child-killer… there’s an unhurried pace to the writing, and the author knows how to create suspense by withholding just the right details…
Glenn Sumi, Now Magazine, on Stay
Winnipeg – Chiaroscuro Reading Series, McNally Robinson Booksellers, 1120 Grant Ave. on July 5 at 7 p.m. David Demchuk reads from his debut novel The Bone Mother to a hometown crowd alongside noted local spec-fic authors Bess Hamilton and David Alexander Robertson. Free admission.
Quincy, Massachusetts – Readercon, the conference on imaginative literature – July 13 to 16. Registered guest. Pawtucket, RI – Necon, the Northeastern Writers’ Conference – July 20 to 23. Registered guest and panelist.
Toronto – The Bone Mother launch at Glad Day Bookshop, 499 Church St. on Wednesday, July 26 from 8 to 9:30 p.m. Join David Demchuk (“A master of bowel-loosening terror”, Globe and Mail) and digestion-friendly special guests for the launch of his debut novel The Bone Mother. Free admission.
Scotiabank Giller Prize longlist announced! Screaming heard throughout the land.
Toronto – Author Cruise at The Word on the Street Festival, Harbourfront Centre on Sunday, September 24 at 12:30 p.m. Join featured author David Demchuk aboard one of Canada’s tall ships for a one-hour panel discussion with Nick Cutter and Ron Corbett on good and eeeeevil, followed by a signing of his book The Bone Mother. David will also be in attendance at the ChiZine Publications tent, and available as part of the Friend An Author campaign.
Peterborough – Chiaroscuro Reading Series at The Spill, 414 George St. North, on Monday, October 16 at 7 p.m. David Demchuk joins Dana Cameron and Ian Rogers for some spooky pre-Halloween fun. Free admission.
Toronto – Chiaroscuro Reading Series at ROUND Venue, 152A Augusta Avenue, on Wednesday, October 18 at 7 p.m. David Demchuk returns with other noted authors from the ChiZine extended family for an evening of readings in advance of Hallowe’en. Free admission.
Montreal – The Violet Hour at Stock Bar, 1171 Rue Sainte-Catherine E on Tuesday, October 31 at 6:30 p.m. David Demchuk joins other queer Toronto and Montreal authors in celebrating Hallowe’en in an evening of short readings and performances. $5 at the door.
Toronto – Naked Heart: Blood, Guts and Gore at Glad Day Bookshop, 499 Church Street, on Saturday, November 11 at 2:15 p.m. These works of words are not for the faint of heart. David Demchuk returns to Naked Heart, joining Jes Sachse, Jessica L. Webb and Nathan Niigan Noodin Adler as they read from queer fiction with an especially sharp edge. Single tickets are $5 at the door.
Toronto – ChiZine Fall Book Launch at ROUND Venue, 152A Augusta Avenue, on Tuesday, November 28 at 7 p.m. Will it finally be fall? Stephen Michell, Kate Story, Ian Keeling, David Nickle, Rupert Bottenberg and David Demchuk join forces for the long-awaited group launch of their ChiZine titles. Free admission.
Toronto – “Putting the X Back in Xmas” Chiaroscuro Reading Series holiday special at ROUND Venue, 152A Augusta Avenue, on Wednesday, December 20 at 7 p.m. ChiZine authors and guests do their damnedest to ruin Christmas for everyone. Free admission.
Open Book – David Demchuk is Writer-in-Residence for the month of March, posting eight essays about his work, his process, and about genre in general.
Montreal – Blue Metropolis/Metropolis Bleu in Salle Jardin (Hôtel 10) on Sunday, April 29 at 4 p.m. David Demchuk joins Su Sokol, Amal El-Mohtar and Melissa Yuan-Innes for a panel titled ‘Children of Mary Shelley’ to discuss the evolution of speculative fiction in the literary landscape.
Quincy, MA – Readercon, the conference on imaginative literature - July 12 to 15. Registered guest and Shirley Jackson Award nominee.
Pawtucket, RI – Necon, the Northeastern Writers’ Conference from July 19 to 22. Registered guest and panelist.
Dunedin - Dunedin Literary Festival in Dunedin, Ontario on September 8. Panelist.
Toronto - Rowers Reading Series at Glad Day Bookshop on Tuesday, October 2 at 6:45 p.m. David Demchuk joins the Rowers team for a bit of pre-Halloween cheer.
Toronto - ToRoFest at 918 Bathurst Cultural Centre on Saturday, October 6 at 4:15 p.m. David Demchuk launches the third printing of The Bone Mother at the Romanian Book and Arts Festival, where he will apologize for being Ukrainian, speak about Romanian photographer Costica Acsinte, and read a short selection from the book.
Ottawa - Can*Con, the Conference on Canadian Content in Speculative Arts and Literature from October 12-14. Special guest.
Toronto - ChiSeries: A Night in the Lonesome October at the Round Venue on October 17. David Demchuk receives his 2018 Sunburst Award for Adult Fiction, alongside Sandra Kasturi (Sunburst Award for Short Fiction) and Kari Maaren (Copper Cylinder Award for Young Adult Fiction). Hijinks ensue.
Toronto - The Heliconian Literary Lectures at the Heliconian Club, 35 Hazelton Avenue on Tuesday, November 27 at 7:30 p.m. David Demchuk presents a 45-minute lecture on the writing of The Bone Mother, its sources and inspirations. Questions and refreshments. By subscription. Doors open 6:45.
Toronto - Proust & Company Reading Series at Glad Day Bookshop on Thursday, December 13 at 7 p.m. David Demchuk ruins an otherwise fine evening of words and music as the legendary LGBTQ reading series returns to Glad Day. Spoiler: Proust is a no-show.
Montreal - Hashtag Editions book launch at l’Union des écrivains québécois on Thursday, May 2, 6 to 8 p.m. David Demchuk joins Hashtag Editions and the writers of their other spring titles for the launch of the French edition of The Bone Mother, L’usine de porcelain Grazyn.
Whitby - BookMarkIt! Bookfair at the Whitby Curling Club on Saturday, May 4. David Demchuk joins writers from ChiZine Publications to sign and sell books, answer questions, apologize to readers and discourage future authors. Admission is free.
Toronto - Renaissance Press: A Queer and Monstrous Book Launch at Glad Day Bookshop on Saturday, June 8. David Demchuk hosts this jam-packed launch of three new queer specfic books from Renaissance Press: Murder at the World’s Fair by MJ Lyons, The Face in the Marsh by Elizabeth Hirst and the anthology We Shall Be Monsters edited by Derek Newman-Stille.
Manhattan, NYC - The Novel Today at NYU on Wednesday, July 17. David Demchuk will appear as a special guest at this course where his novel The Bone Mother is being taught (alongside works by Michael Ondaatje, Esi Edugyan, Gail Honeyman, Jo Nesbø, Neel Mukherjee, Jennifer Clement and Kate Atkinson).
Pawtucket, RI – Necon, the Northeastern Writers’ Conference from July 18 to 21. Registered guest and panelist: David will be discussing unlikeable protagonists and unreliable narrators.
Dublin, Ireland – Worldcon, the World Science Fiction Convention from August 15 to 19. Registered guest and panelist. David will be teaching knitting in a speed-crafting session and discussing the dos and don'ts of writers' websites, as well as signing autographs and hosting a kaffeeklatch.
Winnipeg – Fantasmagoriana on Friday, September 13 from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. David joins J.H. Moncrieff, Jessica Landry, Adam Petrash in an evening of readings to kick off Fantasmagoriana--and then he and the others will voluntarily lock themselves into the (reputedly haunted) Dalnavert mansion for an overnight writing blitz. Tickets $10. Check back on Halloween for the results!
Ottawa - Can*Con, the Conference on Canadian Content in Speculative Arts and Literature from October 18-20. Special guest.
Winnipeg – Fantasmagoriana launch on Thursday, October 31 from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. David returns with J.H. Moncrieff, Jessica Landry, Adam Petrash to launch the chapbook of stories resulting from their overnight stay at Dalnavert mansion.
The Globe and Mail profiles the six authors shortlisted for the Amazon.ca First Novel Award.
CBC Books asks David Demchuk 'how he wrote it' in the wake of The Bone Mother's Amazon.ca First Novel Award nomination.
Shelagh Rogers of CBC Radio's The Next Chapter interviews David Demchuk about The Bone Mother's success.
CTV's Winnipeg morning show sits down with David Demchuk to talk about about his reading/launch of The Bone Mother at McNally Robinson.
Open-Book.ca introduces David Demchuk in advance of his March 2018 residency at the site.
Hellnotes speaks to David Demchuk about The Bone Mother and discusses some of the unusual aspects of its creation.
The Qwillery asks David Demchuk many excellent questions about The Bone Mother, writing and horror.
SFF180 provides an enthusiastically positive video review of The Bone Mother.
Rachel at Shades of Orange raves about The Bone Mother in her June review wrap-up video.
Horror fiction podcast Books In The Freezer looks at Canadian horror, and gives a big thumbs-up to The Bone Mother.
Mike at This Is Your Mixtape talks to David about five songs connected to milestones in his life and in his career as a writer.
David is interviewed about The Bone Mother, queerness and horror, and the difference between writing for the stage and writing for the page, by esteemed speculative literature magazine Augur for their lively and exciting new blog.
A selection from The Bone Mother, Lorincz, appears in the debut issue of the digital magazine Chronotope.