Shields has made her home, her family and her work life flourish in Windsor, ON. Her passion for writing was discovered at a very young age through the vein of writing in a journal. Her first book, Laughing Through A Second Pregnancy – A Memoir, was published by Black Moss Press in 2011 to rave reviews. In April 2013, Shields edited Whisky Sour City, an anthology of poetry about and for her hometown city of Windsor. I Am That Woman, her first book of poetry, was published in November 2013. Her poetry, short stories and photography has been published is various literary magazines. She mentors, guest speaks and teaches creative writing, and she also created Poetry On Demand, on-the-spot poetry that helps make poetry fun and accessible for all. She also created and hosts Mouth Piece, a reading series c created in an effort to bring people together in story. Her latest work Look At Her was launched by Black Moss Press in the fall 2016. In October 2017, Shields gave a TEDx talk in Chatham, ON. She is part of Windsor’s Group of Seven poets published in the 2017 anthology ‘Because We Have All Lived Here’ (Black Moss Press). Vanessa is the owner of Gertrude’s Writing Room – A Gathering Place for Writers, where she teaches workshops and classes, offers editing and mentoring services, and holds literary events. Visit: www.gertrudeswritingroom.com.