Labour Day Message from
Ben Nuttall-Smith, President of FBCW
Scribbler – an affectionate term for a person who writes for a living or as a hobby.
Dear fellow Scribblers,
It’s been a long hard grind for your executive and directors since our Annual General Meeting, Wednesday, May 15, 2013. With our webpage and Facebook page corrupted by unknown outside sources a day before our AGM, we’ve worked hard to get these two valuable sources of communication back up and running. There were a few dark days and nights as our membership dropped as people became frustrated with a perceived lack of progress. Our volunteers persevered. Our Facebook page is relevant again through the efforts of 1st VP, David Blinkhorn and others as we have begun to populate the page with contests, announcements, and short pieces of writing advice. At the writing of this letter, our webpage is almost ready for relaunch. George Opacic has worked tirelessly bringing our new vision for the webpage alive. While it is not yet there, we continue to work towards a new fresh page that engages the members of our organization and seeks to invite new people to the writing profession
When it was suggested at the beginning of that AGM I allow my name as president, I accepted to do so on the provision I be permitted to take bold steps to produce reform where reform was obviously needed. With a strong 1st Vice President in David Blinkhorn and the continued unflinching support of our Secretary Treasurer, Mickey Bickerstaff, we set out to make the necessary changes to move forward. Change is a difficult thing to bring forward. It fights the inertia of the status quo represented by those happy with the way things have been as opposed to those, excited to try new things, that sought a new, improved role for FBCW with the writers of our province. The expenditure to bring change has taken a huge amount of energy and I thank our visionaries for their efforts.
Instead of waiting for funding to support our programs, we have forged ahead and initiated programs to support our members, trying to rebuild our membership.
We have travelled to give workshops wherever and whenever we were invited, paying our own way with some travel assistance from our existing funds and a bit of help from The Writers’ Union of Canada for our visit to Haida Gwaii. Sadly neglected membership lists are being rebuilt through the heroic effort of our Membership Coordinator, Sharla Cuthbertson.
Our First Vice President, David Blinkhorn got busy organizing programs, contests and workshops as well as planning the November retreat. I managed to stay out of the sun for most of the summer, thus avoiding sunburn. (No, I wasn’t working on another book. Nor was I painting.) It’s been an extremely busy time all around.
Now, with our website almost complete and ready for action, it’s your turn. We would like to see the site populated with your bios and headshots, publications and workshop skills as well as Writing Services you might wish to advertise such as editing skills and ghostwriting. Of course, this will entail also keeping your memberships current.
We’d also like you to recruit your scribbler friends who are not yet members of the FBCW or have permitted their memberships to relapse.
We are approximately 26,500 writers in B.C. with just over 2,000 of those published.
This September we have arranged to begin offering BC BOOKWORLD free of charge to our members. We also intend to resurrect our WordWorks magazine to printed format. Therefore we will need your mailing address kept up-to-date. If you have moved or expect to move, please notify our Membership Coordinator right away:
We look forward to offering useful workshops and meet & greets throughout the province. To accomplish all we have in mind, we’ll need an active membership with dedicated Regional and Area reps to rally the troops.
We’re over the hump. Let’s all make the Federation of BC Writers the top writing organization in the country.Ben Nuttall-Smith President Federation of BC Writers