Russell Wangersky was raised in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada, where his father was a professor of oceanography at Dalhousie University and his mother, a marine biologist, ran a tight ship.

His youth was spent exploring Halifax, with travel to Barcelona and Trondheim, Norway, when his family travelled on university sabbaticals.

He attended Acadia University and chose philosophy over the family business of science, and edited the university's literary magazine, Alpha. He also signed up, during those university years, to be a volunteer firefighter in Wolfville, NS. He left the department after he completed his BA Honours in 1984, when he and his then-wife, Barbara Pratt, moved to Toronto. There, Russell worked as a researcher in the Queen's Park bureau of Southam News.

RW best.png

In 1986, the couple moved to St. John's, Newfoundland. Russell spent five years there as a reporter at the Sunday Express and five years at CBC Television. He also became a father to two children before joining The Telegram in 1997.

He returned to firefighting as deputy chief when a volunteer department was established in the St. Philips - Portugal Cove area where he lived.

But shortly after Russell became The Telegram's editor in 2002, he began to struggle with the stress and horrors he'd encountered in firefighting and was forced to leave that part of his life behind.

At about the same time, his writing began to draw attention and acclaim in the literary world. After more than a decade of writing columns for Atlantic Canadian newspapers, Russell pulled up stakes and moved west. Today, Russell lives in Saskatoon, where he's married to author Leslie Vryenhoek. If managing two newspapers wasn't enough, he also has an active writing career and finds true joy in cooking. His seven books include short stories, novels and non-fiction.