R.I.P. Alice Munro (1931 – 2024)

“Compared to Anton Chekhov for her peerless short stories for which she won a Nobel Prize for Literature in 2013, Alice Munro (left) has died.FULL STORY


2022 Whistler Writers Fest

August 24th, 2022

The 21st Whistler Writers Festival will be held from October 13-16 with a hybrid of online and in person events.

Guest authors at the festival this year include Shyam Selvadurai (Mansions of the Moon), Lisa Moore (This is How we Love), Anna Pitoniak (Our American Friend), Daniel Kalla (The Darkness in the Light), Guy Gavriel Kay (All the Seas of the World), Heather O’Neill (When we Lost our Heads) and Zarqa Nawaz (Jameela Green Ruins Everything).

There will be 13 author reading events, including favourites like the Booklovers’ Literary Salon (featuring Marsha Lederman and Kiss the Red Stairs: The Holocaust, Once Removed), the Literary Cabaret (an evening of live music paired with readings), the Thrills and Chills Mystery and Crime Writers Panel, and the Saturday Night Gala, featuring Iain Reid and Méira Cook.

New features include an oral storytelling event called “Sharing Traditions: An Evening of Oral Storytelling” with Indigenous storytellers Tsawaysia Spukwus and Tanina Williams; and a workshop for aspiring creatives and performers called “Page to Stage: Using Improvisation to Generate Character” with local thespian Brandon Barrett.

“This year’s festival is really about sharing stories together and fostering a strong creative community, not only through books but a whole spectrum of the literary arts,” said Rebecca Wood Barrett, festival artistic director. “That’s why we’ve introduced oral storytelling and have a workshop that blends acting and writing to help participants generate authentic character and story. And of course our Literary Cabaret combines live music and reading performances and is always a hit.”

Festival artistic director, Rebecca Wood Barrett (r.) with past director Stella Harvey.

The festival is hands-on so participants can hone their skills through 12 creative writing and industry workshops. The “Publish Like a Pro” workshop series is scheduled for October 13. On October 14, attendees can check out Insights from Insiders: Trade Publishing in Canada today, which is led by publishers, editors and literary agents. Pitch your Book or Story Idea to a Trade Publishing Pro sells out every year, and it’s back again.

“All workshops are really meant to give our participants a leg up on their craft and writing career, and help them take the next step forward with their manuscripts,” Wood Barrett said. “We’ve added a crime writing workshop, we’ve got popular teacher Merilyn Simonds leading a workshop on getting to the barebones of the story, and Kagan Goh will be guiding a workshop that marries fiction and non-fiction writing with elements of poetry. There’s something for everyone, no matter what genre you’re working in.”

Most events will be held in person at the Fairmont Chateau Whistler, and online in a hybrid format so that people can attend from anywhere.

“We’re one of the only writers’ festivals in Canada doing a full hybrid event,” Wood Barrett said. “It’s much more complex, however, accessibility is important to us, and we want everyone to be able to participate. That’s what this year’s festival is really about — sharing stories together.  Our commitment to the in-person and digital model helps us to connect and build community with more people.”

For the full list of workshops and events, visit https://whistlerwritersfest.com/.

Tickets go on sale on August 31. Some events sell out quickly and ticket reservation is recommended.

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