Monica Kidd’s bios are typically confusing, but entertaining. She writes poetry, fiction and non-fiction, with seven books, and poems, essays and articles numbering in the dozens. Her latest poetry collection, Chance Encounters with Wild Animals, was published by Gaspereau Press in 2019.
After growing up on the prairies and doing a Bachelor of Science (Ecology/Zoology) at the University of Calgary, she moved to Kingston, Ontario, where she graduated with Master of Science (Biology) degree at Queen’s. During that time, she did field work in remote areas of Quebec, Labrador and Norway. After finishing grad school, she stayed on in Kingston to work for Cuso International, building on her volunteer experience at the campus stations CJSW in Calgary and CFRC in Kingston, and working with a small team to produce a series of radio documentaries about community and international development called Borderlands for the Canadian campus and community radio network. At the end of this project, she returned to Labrador, and promptly fell head over heels with the east. She moved to St. John’s in 1998, where she worked for CBC Radio until 2004, producing reportage and documentaries and one radio play that won national and international awards; she finished up as CBC’s National Science Reporter and an editor for the popular national science program Quirks & Quarks. She stays connected to audio through occasional pieces she produces for Voice of Bonne Bay Radio (vobb.org), and her website for poetry and field recordings, curiaudio.com.
She also began making short films in NL, beginning with the independent productions The Aviatrix (2009), a documentary honouring recalling Amelia Earhart’s trip to Trepassey, Newfoundland and Labrador (NL); praxis:Twillingate (2007), a lyrical film about rural medicine in NL; The Home Front (2003), reflecting on wars at home and abroad; The World’s Last Lunch Counter (2002) about a fading community haunt on Queen Street East in Toronto; and Multiplicity (2001), on the artistry of penmanship. She made her directorial debut with the National Film Board of Canada in 2021 with The Storm, an animated short reflecting on what it means to bring a baby into a world gripped by a global health crisis.
In 2004, she transitioned to medicine, completing medical school and family medicine residency at Memorial University of Newfoundland. She has been working as a family doctor in Alberta and in Newfoundland, with special interests in global health, child & maternal health, and medical humanities, since 2011. She has teaching appointments at the University of Calgary and Memorial University, and has been a frequent contributor to national medical publications such as The Medical Post and Canadian Medical Association Journal.
The evolution continues.
In 2016, she began Whisky Jack Letterpress in Calgary, producing small works such as posters and broadsides. In 2017, she went back to her roots in biology and spent her first month in Antarctica working as an expedition guide, lecturing on the natural and cultural history of the extreme south.
She divides her time between Calgary and St. John’s and is mom to three.