The Obligatory Bio

Vanessa Farnsworth is a science journalist, former horticulturist, long-time resident of the BC Interior, and co-founder of one of the first internet application development companies in Canada. Her non-fiction focusses primarily on nature, horticulture, and issues that intersect with either or both.

During a career that has spanned more than 25 years, she has delved into native plant diversity, indigenous mushrooms, citizen science, Lyme disease, heavy horse farming, pine bark beetles, grafting techniques, hostile fruit flies, and sick bees. She is interested in rare plants, novel insects, threats to nature from within and without, environmental gardening practices, and anyone who has made a career pursuing these things.

Vanessa's countless short and feature articles and columns have appeared in many regional and national publications, including Canadian Gardening, Canadian Living, Cottage, Garden Making, The Grower, Harrowsmith, Kootenay Life East, Kootenay Living Magazine, Route 3, Small Farm Canada, and Vitality Magazine.

Her non-fiction book, Rain on a Distant Roof: A Personal Journey Through Lyme Disease in Canada (Signature Editions, 2013) explores the growing Lyme disease crisis in this country. A second book, the short story collection The Things She'll Be Leaving Behind (Thistledown Press), was published in 2018. Vanessa's short fiction has also been published in literary journals across Canada and in the United States, including The Dalhousie Review, dANDelion, filling Station, The New Quarterly, PRECIPICe, Qwerty, and Reed Magazine. Her short story, "Napoleon's Eyes", was nominated for the Journey Prize.

Vanessa is currently the President of the BC Interior Chapter of the Professional Writers Association of Canada.



Huge thanks to the Access Copyright Foundation for their financial support through a Marian Hebb Research Grant (2018) and a Professional Development Grant (2013).