Susanna Moodie was an English-born Canadian writer who wrote novels, children’s books, and poetry but was most well known for her writings about being a settler in 19th century Canada. While living in Suffolk, she began publishing books in 1822 as Susanna Strickland and was also a member of the Anti-Slavery Society. Shortly after her marriage in 1831, she and her husband, John Moodie, a retired officer, emigrated to Upper Canada (which, oddly, appears to be the southernmost area of Canada, but “upper” probably referred to the upper St. Lawrence) north of Peterborough.
Despite having four children, Moodie continued to write, and her letters and journals became important sources of information about life in the British colony. She disliked living in the wild, though, and nine years later, she and her husband moved to Belleville, which was slightly more settled. In 1852, she published Roughing It in the Bush, which became a success and is her most well-known work.
Moodie’s work was an inspiration for Margaret Atwood, particularly for Atwood’s book Alias Grace. She was also an inspiration for Carol Shields, who published a critical analysis of her work.
Most popular works: Roughing It in the Bush, Life in the Backwoods, Life in the Clearings versus the Bush
Other works: Spartacus, Mark Hurdlestone, Letters of a Lifetime, Patriotic Songs, The Little Quaker, Flora Lyndsay, Enthusiasm and Other Poems