About

Jenn Thornhill Verma is a proud Newfoundlander descended from a long line of fishers. She has worked and lived in Ottawa in the non-profit healthcare sector for the past decade. Previously, she worked as a producer/reporter in public and private radio in Newfoundland and Labrador. Jenn is a University of King’s College alumnus, holding a Bachelor of Journalism and Biology Honours (2002), having returned for a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Nonfiction (2019). She also holds a Master of Science (2007) in Medicine from Memorial University of Newfoundland. She has published and contributed to more than forty articles in her field (healthcare), presents at national and international conferences and guest lectures for graduate-level programs. Recently, Jenn revisits her family’s fishing roots in her writing, having published feature stories about the legacy of the cod fishery collapse in Reader’s Digest, Maisonneuve, Downhome, Saltscapes, Explore, Newfoundland Quarterly, The Telegram and The Independent (NL). In 2019, she was named a finalist for a National Magazine Award (category: Best New Magazine Writer) and a silver finalist for an Atlantic Journalism Award (category: Best Profile). Thornhill-Verma’s first book, “Cod Collapse: The Rise and Fall of Newfoundland’s Saltwater Cowboys” will be published in fall 2019 by Nimbus Publishing (see coverage at the University of King’s College and more coverage in The Telegram, on CBC NL radio’s The Broadcast – runs 12:57-21:37 – and VOCM’s Sunday Drive – runs 16.33-27.22). In addition to writing, Jenn is a landscape painter with featured works in galleries in Corner Brook, NL and Ottawa, ON. She paints scenes of outport and coastal communities like the ones she remembers growing up.

For a list of Jenn Thornhill Verma’s published works, visit her portfolio.

Jenn is currently touring her book, Cod Collapse. Her book is receiving early praise:

“Verma’s thoughtful and thought-provoking book combines personal, familial, and societal experiences with historical and contemporary accounts of the fishery. She has produced a remarkably engaging blend of memoir, history, science, and humanism…. Verma aptly and emotionally describes the collapse as one of the greatest collective traumas in the history of Newfoundland.” —Atlantic Books Today (Halifax, NS)

“We usually read about the collapse of the northern cod fishery in the language of statistics. Catch levels and quotas tell the broad story of ecological catastrophe. How remarkable, then, to have this perspective reversed. In Cod Collapse, Jennifer Thornhill Verma examines the impact that both cod and cod’s absence have had on a single family – her own.” –David McFarlane, Author of The Danger Tree and Summer Gone.