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Michael F Stewart

Award Winning Author

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My Story

A Fighter of Fictional Emergencies

I hope I can help you with story. 

I write what I seek to understand. About people and relationships. About life. Inevitably these stories are best written for children. Inevitably there is something surreal in them, some twist of magic that comes in the writing. 

My writing is eclectic. I've written chapter books, television pilots, graphic novels, interactive epics. I've written dozens of books. Some of which have won, or been nominated for, awards like the the Book Life Prize, the Claymore Award, the Ottawa Book Award, and the Snow Willow. The books can be found on the Best Books of the Year by Kirkus and Canadian Children’s Centre Best Books for Kids and Teens lists. And some books I've written will never see the light of day.

I received my MFA at the Vermont College of Fine Art in their Writing for Children and Young Adults program. A member of SCBWI, TWUC, and board member of CANSCAIP, I live in Ottawa with my wife and four daughters from whom the best stories arise. 

My next book, a middle grade novel in verse, comes out Spring 2024 through Red Deer Press. 

I am represented by Kelly Dyksterhourse with The Tobias Literary Agency.


Ten-year-old Teagan loves her big brother Draven. When he disappears after a fight with their father, she's stunned and lost without him. She can't believe her father's accusations that Draven's a thief. But the truth may be scarier. A gift of her father's old, cracked phone means a chance to turn detective. As Teagan's world blossoms with the phone's possibilities, she traces the clues and hunts for her missing brother. A school art project and Teagan's growing compulsion to use her phone offer answers to how she can find Draven and maybe help mend her broken family.

“In this striking novel-in-verse, Michael Stewart presents a poignant tale of growing up, leaning in, falling out, and managing hard truths. Using free verse, wordplay, concrete poetry, and more, Stewart's story provides a lovely mycorrhizal mutualism for readers of all ages.” K.A. Holt, award winning author of Ben Bee and the Teacher Griefer.

“A cautionary tale crafted with a storyteller’s skill and a poet’s economy with language. Seeking Draven is a call to reexamine our relationship to the wired world,” Katherine Lawrence, acclaimed author of Stay.

Check out the teacher resource here: 

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The Momentous Expiration of Tremmy Sinclair

"The writing and pacing are superb, the characters are totally believable, the humour is outstanding and the plotline fires on all cylinders beginning to end." CM Reviews -- Highly Recommended

"Tremendous Sinclair's expiration is truly momentous, as is Michael F. Stewart's telling of it." CanLit for Little Canadians.

Winner of Ontario's Indie Author Project 

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Heart Sister

“Raw, real, and riveting. In Heart Sister, Stewart masterfully takes us on Emmitt’s poignant search for what might be found when all seems lost. Heartfelt and heart-wrenching, it is a powerful story of hope.” -- Caroline Pignat, two-time Governor General’s Award–winning author of Shooter

Canadian Children's Book Centre Starred Review

Snow Willow Award Nominee

Ottawa Book Award Nominee

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Ray Vs the Meaning of Life

"A tale spins its answer to an age-old question into an inclusive, hilarious, and thought-provoking yarn."--Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

"Ray vs The Meaning of Life will have readers rolling their eyes in mock horror, laughing out loud, and asking themselves about the meaning in their own lives. For an author to take readers from the sublime to the ridiculous and back again shows both a willingness to take risks with his writing and an incredible understanding of his audience. Highly Recommended." CM: Canadian Review of Materials

"Stewart's fast-paced, darkly hilarious novel will cause readers to chuckle, tear up, hug their moms, and cross their fingers for a sequel ..." the Booklife Prize (Grand Prize Winner).  

"... full of heart and spunk. This author has a new fan in me. I'm definitely checking out more of his work."--Rebecca Sky, author of The Love Curse series.

"Wildly imaginative, deeply felt, funny, and at times tragic, this novel delivers a unique and rewarding reading experience." Jury statement, Ottawa Book Awards (nominee, 2019)


Counting Wolves

"Best Book of 2017" Kirkus Reviews

"Stewart lets the story do the talking in a world populated by fabulous supporting characters and full of surprises. Counting Wolves is an engaging read for teens and adults alike," Wesley King, author of the Edgar and Silver Birch Award winner OCDaniel.

"At its core, Stewart's memorably inventive novel destigmatizes mental illness and sends a message that seeking help can make life better. A deeply affecting, hard-to-put-down work that depicts a girl's dark odyssey through obsession toward healing insight." Kirkus Reviews

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The Boy Who Swallows Flies

Winner of the Claymore Award! 
Rated a "Best Book for Kids and Teens" by the Canadian Children's Book Centre

Warning - Rated Kids-Only for Bug Grossness

Jarrod can view the memories of any bug. He just has to eat it. 


Keep in a Cold, Dark Place

"With its tyrannical parents, moronic siblings, goofy monsters, and dark humor, the book summons the works of middle-grade master Roald Dahl. Young readers interested in less cuddly fare should enjoy this offbeat story of curses, creatures, and lessons on finding satisfaction in one's place in the world.
A darkly funny rural tale with a scary bent." -- Kirkus Reviews

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"Keep writing, my friend."



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