Heidi L. M. Jacobs has won the 2020 Stephen Leacock Memorial Medal for Humour for her novel Molly of the Mall: Literary Lass and Purveyor of Fine Footwear (NeWest Press). Jacobs will receive a $15,000 prize. The award recognizes Canadian humour writing.
The romance is set against the backdrop of the West Edmonton Mall, and follows Molly, a young woman who works at a shoe store. Jacobs grew up in Edmonton and is currently the English and History Librarian at the University of Windsor. Molly of the Mall is her first novel.
Jacobs was shortlisted alongside Amy Spurway’s Crow (Goose Lane Editions) and Drew Hayden Taylor’s play Cottagers and Indians (Talonbooks). Each runner-up will receive $3,000.
The annual gala dinner, held in Orillia, Ontario, was cancelled for 2020 but Jacobs, Spurway, and Hayden Taylor will be celebrated at the 2021 celebration. The winner was chosen by an anonymous jury of five judges and a committee of readers from Orillia, where Stephen Leacock lived.