Nanaimo Spring Writes Festival

“The Stories That Find Us”

 

Scroll down this page for the festival schedule, event registration, and posters!  If you’d like to know more about how to book a table at our publishing fair, or if you have any other questions, please email .

If you’d like to book a blue pencil session, please email .

If you’d like to book a room at the Coast Bastion Hotel: PLEASE CALL  1-800-663-1144 AND QUOTE GROUP CODE: CBI-GFC16627 Rooms start at just $135 a night (double occupancy) in the luxurious Coast Bastion Hotel!

 


Event Schedule 

(subject to change–please click on title to learn more and register)

Thursday, April 27th


10-12 : The Write Word with Rachel McMillen | Free! | (FULL!)


10-3:30 : Salvage, Save, Redeem & Rescue… A Poetry Retreat with Carla Funk!


12-1 : Brownbag Lunch Reading with David Fraser | Free!


1-3 : Let’s Read Some Poetry: a Workshop for the Unwilling with Ursula Vaira | Free!


3-5 : Write-In | Lighthouse Pub | Free! 


3-5 : Identity Theft: A Workshop with George Opacic | Free!


5:30 : Dinner | Check FBCW social media to find out where the other writers have headed


7-10 : WordStorm Society of the Arts: A Special Edition

 

Friday, April 28th


9:45-11:45 : Poetry and Movement: A Workshop with Holly Bright 


10-12 : Networking with Readers with Barb Drozdowich | Free! (FULL!)


10-12 : Write In | Nanaimo Literacy Center | Free!


12-1 : Brownbag Lunch Reading with Rachel McMillen | Free!


12:30-3 : Hook and Hold Your Reader: a Creative Non-Fiction Master Class with Angie Abdou (FULL!)


12:30-3 : Writing from Life, a Master Class with Kathy Page (FULL!)


2 : Living Room: An Informal Reading Circle | Nanaimo Library | Free!


2-3:30 : Every Word has a Spirit: Student Readings from Elder Project in Nanaimo | Free!


3-5 : Official Welcoming Meet & Greet | Free!


5:30 : Dinner | Check FBCW social media to find out where the other writers have headed


7-10 : Gala Evening: “The Stories that Find Us” | Steven Price & Angie Abdou | Cash bar & appetizers |

 

Saturday, April 29th


9-2 : Write-In on Newcastle Island (weather permitting)


9-3 : Publishing Fair | A pocket guide to getting published, with speakers, panelists, & exhibitors. (Free!)


10-1 : Key elements of Fiction: A Master Class with Steven Price (FULL!)


10-1Memoir: Telling Your Story with Yvonne Blomer


12-1: Brownbag Lunch Reading with Angie Abdou | Free!


12-4 : Poetry Treasure Hunt, Downtown Nanaimo


1-3 : Living Room: An Informal Reading Circle


1-3 : Singing with and entertaining children “of all ages”


3-5 : Stone Soup: Collaborations Through Culture Days


3:30 : FBCW AGM: FBCW Members Only | Vancouver Island Convention Center


7-10 : “If I tell you this” two award-winning poets and two master storytellers will hold you spellbound with their original work

 

Sunday, April 30th


10 : Heritage Walk Downtown Nanaimo | suggested $5 donation to Literacy Nanaimo


 

10-12 : Developing a Stong Narrative Theme: a Workshop with Jennifer Manuel (FULL!)


12 : Lunch: Check FBCW Social Media to find out where other writers have headed


1-3 : Beginning at the end: ideas for promoting books with Craig Spence | Harbourfront Library| Free! 


 


Event Descriptions

Thursday, April 27th


Rachel - head shot (2)10 am-12 pm
Event: “The Write Word” an interactive workshop with Rachel McMillen
Location: Nanaimo Harbourfront Library
Description:   Two books. Two good plots. One you can’t put down, the other you don’t even pick up. Why? In the majority of cases, it is simply the way the author has chosen to use language. As Virginia Woolf once said, the English language has been “out and about” and words have picked up “baggage” far beyond their actual definition.  “The Write Word” is an interactive workshop designed to help authors choose and use the right words, words that invite the reader to step into their stories. For those starting out on the writing journey – and even for those who are well along the path. We will examine examples from both modern and classical works, and work on several short exercises designed to increase your ability to choose the best word to portray your story.
Bio: Rachel (R.J.) McMillen is the author of three books, with a fourth, Green River Falling, to be released by Touchwood Editions in May, 2016. Dark Moon Walking, the first book in the Dan Connor mystery series, was nominated for both the Edgar Award and the Kobo Emerging Writers award in the Genre (Mystery) category. Her poetry has appeared in numerous publications, including the recently released anthology All Our Words Needed Saying. She has written numerous magazine articles, including several cover stories, and for many years had a weekly newspaper column. Rachel currently teaches Creative Writing in Ajijic, Jalisco, Mexico
Cost: Free!
Registration: http://www.bcwriters.ca/event-registration/#id=103&cid=1226&wid=1201

 


Funk Headshot 210 am – 3:30 pm
EventSalvage, Save, Redeem & Rescue… A Poetry Retreat with Carla Funk  
Location: St. Pauls Anglican Church
Description:  Through a blend of guided writing exercises, readings, and quick-fire lessons on craft and technique, this all-day poetry retreat aims to help you scavenge the scrap heap of the everyday and the junkyard of memory for what’s worth saving, and then shape it into something worth writing and revising. Please bring your own notebook and pen/pencil— and a keen desire to sift the ashes to find the truth and beauty and redeem it with language that sings.
Bio: Born and raised in Vanderhoof, B.C., one of the earliest Mennonite settlements in the province, Carla Funk now lives, writes, and searches out truth and beauty in Victoria, where she served as the city’s inaugural poet laureate from 2006-2008. Her books of poetry include The Sewing Room (Turnstone Press, 2006), Apologetic (Turnstone Press, 2010) and Gloryland (Turnstone Press, 2016). In 2012, she won The Malahat Review’s Constance Rooke Creative Nonfiction contest for “Returning,” which sent her down the nonfiction writing road. She is currently at work on a collection of personal essays about a small town childhood, imagination, logging trucks, and God.
Cost: $50 for members of the FBCW, $60 for non-members
Registration: http://www.bcwriters.ca/event-registration/#id=104&cid=1226&wid=1201


DavidCactus12 pm – 1 pm
Event: Brown bag lunch reading with David Fraser
Location: Nanaimo Harbourfront Library
Description:  David Fraser will be reading and performing work from his latest collection After All the Scissor Work Is Done, as well as some of his favorite poems and selected explorations of possibility in form of new works in progress. Following the reading, there will be an opportunity to talk poetry and poetics in a relaxed Q and A session. Bring your brown bag, your queries, and your answers. We might explore the following: Why does poetry matter? What is the state of poetry amid the chaos all around us. As poets and readers of poetry, how can we stay balanced, be in the moment, and feed our creative souls… and more.
Bio: David Fraser is a poet, spoken-word performer, publisher, and editor. He lives in Nanoose Bay, Vancouver Island. His poetry has appeared in many journals and anthologies, including Rocksalt, An Anthology of Contemporary BC Poetry (Mother Tongue Press), Poems from Planet Earth (Leaf Press), Walk Myself Home (Caitlin Press) and recently Tesseracts 18. He has published six collections of poetry. His most recent collection is After All the Scissor Work is Done, Leaf Press, April 2016.
Cost: Free!
Registration: not necessary


Ursula-Vaira-Workshop1 pm – 3 pm
Event: Workshop with Ursula Vaira: Let’s Read Some Poetry
Location: Nanaimo Harbourfront Library
Description: This a workshop for the unwilling (who feel they are missing out). We will leave the deciphering and analysis texts on their shelves, sit by the fire at the library, and enter the poem through our senses to find the pleasure within.
Bio:  Ursula Vaira is the founder and publisher for Leaf Press, publishing poetry for its sixteenth year this year. She is also the author of And See What Happens: The Journey Poems, published by Caitlin Press. *Photo credit Chris Hancock Donaldson
Cost: Free!
Registration: http://www.bcwriters.ca/event-registration/#id=105&cid=1226&wid=1201

 


1502503_721786411167647_581722431_n-650x430 3 pm – 5 pm
Event: Write-In at the Lighthouse Pub
Location: 50 Anchor Way, Nanaimo, BC V9R 5L5
Description:  Feel like writing and chatting with peers? Come to the lighthouse pub, where there will be a section reserved just for you! Writing prompts will be available, some serious, some hilarious.  This is an opportunity to relax and meet a few fellow writers, as well as order a coffee, or a glass of wine. We look forward to seeing you there!
Cost: Free! (refreshments not provided, but we encourage you to support the establishment )
Registration: not required


 3 pm – 5 pm
Event: Identity Theft Workshop with George Opacic
Location: Nanaimo Harbourfront Library
Description: Literary artists need to put their name out on the internet and social media. Doing so, however, leaves us open to the army of scammers who want our hard-earned money. This presentation goes over the type of threats waiting for you, and how to arm yourself against them.
Bio: George Opacic is currently a Director of the Federation of BC Writers. While traveling on business he wrote numerous short stories and many film scripts, including Shroomtown, Hellenic Digits, Hammurabi, L5, World HQ, Where There’s Smoke, and Protocol OmegaCurrent projects include an ambitious novel called The Antichrist of Stanley Park, which takes place in Nunavut and Vancouver. In progress is a book being written for a client, called In A Cloud of SailsGeorge founded a publishing company called Rutherford Press. Its first publications are Notes To Mother by Jeff Berry, and Flying With White Eagle by Ben Nuttall-Smith. Upcoming books are Explore the Alaskan Coast by Patrick Hill, two more works by Ben Nuttall-Smith titled Mad God of the Toltecs and Discovered In A Scream, plus In A Cloud Of Sails by Ron M. Craig and George Opacic.
Cost: Free!
Registration: http://www.bcwriters.ca/event-registration/#id=106&cid=1226&wid=1201



 Kailey7 pm – 10 pm
Event: A Special Edition of WordStorm
Location: St. Pauls Anglican Church, 100 Church St.
Description: A special edition of Nanaimo’s legendary performance series, with artists Carla Funk, Blaine Greenwood, Nanaimo poet laureate Tina Biello, and Nanaimo Youth Poet Laureate Kailey DeFehr.

Bios:  
Kailey DeFehr (pictured) is a 22-year-old writer, born and raised in beautiful Nanaimo, B.C. She began writing poetry in elementary school and carried the art form with her into her teen years. Her interest in writing was originally in short stories and novels, but poetry always seemed to come naturally to her. It quickly became something she felt
she had to do, not just something she enjoyed. She is a full time dental assistant, part-time creative writing student at VIU, and Nanaimo’s Inaugural Youth Poet Laureate.

Blaine Greenwood, born in Viking Alberta 1951, is an educator by profession – with a career spanning from classroom teacher to museum educator and event planner. It is from this foundation that Blaine’s poetry has come to reflect his interest in psychology, history and spirituality. His verse has been described as “dark, homespun, sensual, rich with images.” A selection of his poems have been published in the Interpscan Journal (Canada), in Our Journey (Oregon, USA), and in Mudlark Press’ Rags: Journal of Creative Writing 2003 2004 and on websites Astropoetica 2004, Vincent Van Gallery 2003. Performed in Philadelphia PA at Robyn’s Bookstore. Blaine was one of the Coordinators of MOST VOCAL Poets Society. He is currently one of the artistic directors of Lotos Land spoken word / poetry venue at Fort Macleod Alberta’s South Country Fair and a past main stage performer. He is currently the DJ for CKXU’s Not Your Mother’s Poetry and has participated in 100 Thousands Poets for Change event 2013 – 2015.  Books: Black Cat in the Shadows (Ekstatis Editions, 2015. Richard Olafson, ed.) Walking Naked Down the Street (Coldwater Press, Trent Moranz, ed.)

Born and raised in Vanderhoof, Carla Funk now lives and writes in Victoria, where she served as the inaugural poet laureate (2006-2008). Gloryland (Turnstone Press, 2016) is her fifth book of poems. She’s currently at work on a creative nonfiction collection about childhood, God, and small town imagination.

Tina Biello grew up in Cowichan. She is thrilled to be Nanaimo’s next Poet Laureate for the next 3 years, from 2017-2020. She studied Theatre at UBC and now finds herself writing. Her poems have appeared in chapbook anthologies edited by Patrick Lane since 2008. She has had 2 books published and is working on her third manuscript. Her first book with Leaf Press, ‘In the Bone Cracks of the Walls’ in 2014 was also translated into Italian and presented at a cinema festival in Italy. These poems have also been composed into a CD of music called ‘Dolci Momenti’. Her second book of poetry, ‘A Housecoat Remains’, was published by Guernica in 2015.
Cost: $5 at the door
Registration: Please email David Fraser at . Space may be limited.


 

 

Friday:


Holly cropped 10 am – 12 pm
Event:  Poetry & Movement Workshop with Holly Bright
Location: Nanaimo Harbour Dance Centre *pending*
Description: Dance is poetry in motion. We dance with every breath. Let’s bring to form our written inspirations and allow them to move through us. We will use movement and voice, language, and sounds to witness the metaphor, depth, and humour that arises by their intersection and our interpretation.  There are no words for it. Being moved. It was as though, it’s kind of like, that reminds me of…. There is a space that lingers between us, full of the imagery of unshaped memory, whispers, and mementos of something as if…and somehow, we understand. *This workshop is suitable for all ages*
Bio: Holly Bright has been a dance artist and educator since 1986. She is certified to facilitate Laban/Bartenieff Movement Analysis, GYROTONIC® and GYROKINESIS® movement exercise. Holly founded and directs The Crimson Coast Dance Society, which produces professional dance events and experiences in Nanaimo, BC. www.crimsoncoastdance.org In 2010 Holly was awarded the City of Nanaimo Excellence in Culture Award for her contribution to the cultural fabric of the city.
Cost: $25 for members of the FBCW, $35 for non-members
Registration: http://www.bcwriters.ca/event-registration/#id=107&cid=1226&wid=1201
Photo by Roy Ostling


 10 am – 12 pmBarbDrozdowichPicSmaller
Event: Networking with Readers with Barb Drozdowich
Location: Nanaimo Harbourfront Library
Description: All writers need readers. How do authors find readers for their books? Are you stumped by all the ways an author can communicate with readers? Tired of being told what you should do? Does all the technobabble frustrate you? Are you tired of spending hours at the computer getting nowhere? Let author and technical trainer Barb Drozdowich explain the parts and pieces of an online and offline presence in a straight forward way. She will talk about the various social media sites as well as how to use them effectively. Join Barb for an entertaining talk filled with actionable information.
Bio: Social Media and WordPress Consultant Barb Drozdowich has taught in colleges, universities and in the banking industry. More recently, she brings her 15+ years of teaching experience and a deep love of books to help authors develop the social media platform needed to succeed in today’s fast evolving publishing world. She delights in taking technical subjects and making them understandable by the average person. She owns Bakerview Consulting and manages the popular blog, Sugarbeat’s Books, where she talks about Romance novels. She is the author of 11 books, over 35 YouTube videos and 2 online courses, all focused on helping authors and bloggers. Barb lives in the mountains of British Columbia with her family.
Cost: Free!
Registration: http://www.bcwriters.ca/event-registration/#id=108&cid=1226&wid=1201


 10 am – 12 pm
Event: Write In! 
Location:  Nanaimo Literacy Center
Description: Browse the collection in the bookstore, read the writing prompts, or chat with fellow writers for inspiration. Take a few hours from your busy day to relax and write, surrounded by others.
Cost: Free!
Registration: not needed


Rachel - head shot (2) 12 pm – 1 pm
Event: Brownbag Lunch Reading with Rachel McMillen
Location: Nanaimo Harbourfront Library
Description: coming soon
Bio:  Rachel (R.J.) McMillen is the author of three books, with a fourth, Green River Falling, to be released by Touchwood Editions in May, 2016. Dark Moon Walking, the first book in the Dan Connor mystery series, was nominated for both the Edgar Award and the Kobo Emerging Writers award in the Genre (Mystery) category. Her poetry has appeared in numerous publications, including the recently released anthology All Our Words Needed Saying. She has written numerous magazine articles, including several cover stories, and for many years had a weekly newspaper column. Rachel currently teaches Creative Writing in Ajijic, Jalisco, Mexico
Cost: Free!
Registration: not needed!


Angie Abdou Arsenal 2 12:30 pm – 3 pm
Event: Hook and Hold Your Reader: A Master Class with Angie Abdou in Creative Nonfiction
Location: CHANGED! Vancouver Island Conference Center, Dodds Narrows A
Description:  This workshop will ask the hard questions:
Why should anyone care about your story?
What makes your writing worthy of a reader’s valuable time?
Contemporary life is busy. Time that people used to devote to reading has been encroached upon by NetFlix, YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter.  With the always-increasing demands on everyone’s time, energy, and attention, writers must remember: readers do not owe you anything. Nobody has to read your story. So, how can you shape and craft your nonfiction to ensure that it hooks, readers and holds them fast until to last word? Through a mix of exercises, examples, and theory, this workshop will explore strategies for immersing readers in vivid scenes and building emotional investment in a story. Writers will get tips for creating authentic, engaging, and compelling nonfiction. Participants will also have the opportunity to discuss their works-in-progress, with topics ranging from initial idea to publication and promotion. Bring a pen and paper.
Bio: Angie Abdou has published four books, including three novels: The Bone Cage (a CBC Canada Reads finalist in 2011, MacEwan Book of the Year 2012, and #1 on the CBC Book Club’s Top 10 Sports Books), The Canterbury Trail (a Banff Mountain Book finalist in 2011) and Between. Between was named a “Best of 2014″ book by PRISM Magazine, 49th Shelf, and The Vancouver Sun. In the U.S., New York’s Library Journal listed Between as a Top 13 Indie Pick for Spring 2015.Angie is a professor of Creative Writing at Athabasca University. Her nonfiction has appeared in various magazines and newspapers, including National Post and Elle Magazine. Her fifth book, a novel called What Remains, will be published in September 2017 and she is currently at work on a book-length nonfiction project.
Cost: $35 for members of the FBCW, $45 for non-members
Registration: (Full!) Please email to be placed on the waitlist
http://www.bcwriters.ca/event-registration/#id=109&cid=1226&wid=1201


Kathy Page green top 12:30 pm – 3 pm
Event: Writing from Life, a Master Class with Kathy Page
Location: St. Pauls, Nanaimo
Description: Writing from Life: For fiction and non-fiction writers alike – and especially for those who are torn between the two – this exercise-based workshop explores the ways in which we can shape real-life material into a compelling narrative, and offers the opportunity to reflect on the freedoms, loyalties, and discipline involved in doing so.  Bring your ideas and writing materials.
Bio: Kathy Page is the author of seven novels, including the GG finalist Alphabet, and the Orange Prize listed The Story of My Face. Her last two short story collections, Paradise & Elsewhere, and The Two of Us  were nominated for the Giller Prize.  She also writes memoir and co-dited , with Lynne Van Luven, In the Flesh, a book of personal essays about the body.  Her current project, Dear Evelyn, fiction inspired by family history, will be published in 2018.  Kathy Page lives on Salt Spring Island and teaches part-time at Vancouver Island University.
Cost: $45 for members of the FBCW, $55 for non-members
Registration: (Full!) Please email to be placed on the waitlist
http://www.bcwriters.ca/event-registration/#id=110&cid=1226&wid=1201


 

 2 pm – 4 pm
Event: Living Room
Location: Nanaimo Harbourfront Library
Description: An Informal Reading Circle. All welcome!
Bios: coming soon
Cost: Free!
Registration: no registration necessary


 2 pm-3:30 pm
Event: Every Word has a Spirit: Student Readings from Elder Project in Nanaimo
Location: Nanaimo District Secondary School, 355 Wakesiah Avenue, Nanaimo, B.C. Please contact for local transit information.
Description:  Students will be reading poems written for their Elders. Free parking is available.
Website: theelderproject.com
Cost: Free!
Registration: http://www.bcwriters.ca/event-registration/#id=115&cid=1226&wid=1201


 3 pm – 5 pm
Event: Official Welcoming Meet & Greet
Location: Vancouver Island Conference Center
Description: coming soon
Bios: coming soon
Cost: Free!
Registration: http://www.bcwriters.ca/event-registration/#id=116&cid=1226&wid=1201


Author Photo 1 7 pm – 10 pm
Event: Gala Evening: “The Stories That Find Us”
Location: Vancouver Island Conference Center
Description: Join us for a celebration of story and ancestral heritage from multiple cultural perspectives. The parts that express the human whole. Honoured participants will include Celestine Aleck from the Snuneymuxw First Nation, Footprints of the Wolf,  and featured artist, Giller Prize nominee Steven Price in conversation with Canada Reads Finalist and 2011/12 MacEwan Book of the Year winner Angie Abdou — plus some surprise special guests. Book now to make sure you get a seat at this wonderful event – with a cash bar and after party in the lounge.
Bios:  Steven Price’s second novel, By Gaslight (2016), was published to acclaim in Canada, England, the United States, Germany, France, Spain, Portugal, Greece, and Italy, was longlisted for the Giller Prize, and was named a Book of the Year by the Globe & Mail, the CBC, the Writers Trust of Canada, and NPR. His first novel, Into that Darkness (2011), was shortlisted for the Ethel Wilson Prize. He is also the author of two award-winning poetry books, Anatomy of Keys (2006), and Omens in the Year of the Ox (2012). He lives in Victoria, BC.
Angie Abdou has published four books, including three novels: The Bone Cage (a CBC Canada Reads finalist in 2011, MacEwan Book of the Year 2012, and #1 on the CBC Book Club’s Top 10 Sports Books), The Canterbury Trail (a Banff Mountain Book finalist in 2011) and Between. Between was named a “Best of 2014″ book by PRISM Magazine, 49th Shelf, and The Vancouver Sun. In the U.S., New York’s Library Journal listed Between as a Top 13 Indie Pick for Spring 2015.Angie is a professor of Creative Writing at Athabasca University. Her nonfiction has appeared in various magazines and newspapers, including National Post and Elle Magazine. Her fifth book, a novel called What Remains, will be published in September 2017 and she is currently at work on a book-length nonfiction project.
Cost: $7 for members of the FBCW, $10 for non-members
Registration: http://www.bcwriters.ca/event-registration/#id=114&cid=1226&wid=1201


 

 

Saturday, April 29th


 9 am – 2 pm
Event: Write-In on Newcastle Island
Location: Newcastle Island
Description: Go to a beautiful island just off the coast of downtown Nanaimo. Take a boat from Swy-a-lana lagoon, and enjoy an afternoon wandering through nature for inspiration. Walk with fellow festival-goers, or alone. Bring a packed lunch and water, if you’d like to stay all day.
Cost: Free! (Passage on the ferry may cost a nominal fee)
Registration: no registration necessary


 9 am – 3 pm
Event: Publishing Fair — FREE!
Location: Vancouver Island Conference Center
IMG_00002207aDescription: A pocket guide to getting published, with speakers, panelists, & exhibitors! This is the do-not-miss event of the weekend. Speakers include Craig Shemilt – Printorium Bookworks, Bennett Coles – Promontory Press, and Barb Drozdowich – Consultant.

Bios: Craig Schemilt: 

Craig Shemilt has been in the print industry for more than 37 years and does numerous speaking engagements though out BC. He is a partner with 2 brothers in Island Blue Print Co. and he manages the Printorium Bookworks – book printing division. Printorium deals with more than 3000 authors and 200 Publishing Companies across Canada. Craig and the staff of Printorium Bookworks, pride themselves in producing books that exceed their clients expectations.

Jennifer Manuel:

Jennifer Manuel has achieved acclaim for her short fiction. Her novel, The Heaviness of Things That Float, has been called a “remarkable novel deeply of our time and place” by the Vancouver Sun. Jennifer has mentored writers from all around the world and for the past three years has been a TA for Sarah Selecky’s The Story Intensive. Calgary writer Susan Carpenter states that Jennifer’s “thoughtful and supportive manner combined with her extensive knowledge makes her the best mentor I have had on my writing journey.”

Barb Drozdowich:

BarbDrozdowichPicSmallerSocial Media and WordPress Consultant Barb Drozdowich has taught in colleges, universities and in the banking industry. More recently, she brings her 15+ years of teaching experience and a deep love of books to help authors develop the social media platform needed to succeed in today’s fast evolving publishing world. She delights in taking technical subjects and making them understandable by the average person. She owns Bakerview Consulting and manages the popular blog, Sugarbeat’s Books, where she talks about Romance novels. She is the author of 11 books, over 35 YouTube videos and 2 online courses, all focused on helping authors and bloggers. Barb lives in the mountains of British Columbia with her family.

BC1Bennett R. Coles hails from Sidney, BC, and has seen more of the publishing industry than any human should. He is an award-winning author with Titan Books of London, and also heads up the small but mighty BC publishing house Promontory Press. He has worked as an editor, distributor and sales rep in the industry at large, but is happiest when either writing his own books or helping authors write theirs.

Cost: FREE!
Registration: http://www.bcwriters.ca/event-registration/#id=117&cid=1226&wid=1201


Author Photo 1 10 am – 1 pm
Event: Techniques of the Novel: A Master Class with Steven Price
Location: St. Pauls Anglican Church
Description:  A 3 hr master-class in various techniques of fiction writing, with a specific focus on their application in long-form fiction, especially the novel. Topics to be considered include, possibly: character, plot, structure, form, setting, and point-of-view.
Bio: Steven Price’s second novel, By Gaslight (2016), was published to acclaim in Canada, England, the United States, Germany, France, Spain, Portugal, Greece, and Italy, was longlisted for the Giller Prize, and was named a Book of the Year by the Globe & Mail, the CBC, the Writers Trust of Canada, and NPR. His first novel, Into that Darkness (2011), was shortlisted for the Ethel Wilson Prize. He is also the author of two award-winning poetry books, Anatomy of Keys (2006), and Omens in the Year of the Ox (2012). He lives in Victoria, BC.
Cost: $50 for members of the FBCW, $70 for non-members
Registration: http://www.bcwriters.ca/event-registration/#id=111&cid=1226&wid=1201


Yvonne on bike 10 am – 1 pm
Event: Memoir: Telling Your Story with Yvonne Blomer
Location: Nanaimo Harbourfront Library
Description: In this intensive one-day Memoir class students will re-live their experiences through writing about them. With short, focused writing exercises exploring the tools of memoir, students will delve into memories and memoir writing. The focus will be on in-class writing and reading.
Bio: Yvonne Blomer is the Poet Laureate of Victoria, British Columbia. Born in Zimbabwe, she has lived in Japan and England and has cycled in Southeast Asia, Japan, Mexico, Canada, France and the UK. Her most recent poetry collection is As if a Raven (Palimpsest Press, 2014). Her first book of poems a broken mirror, fallen leaf was shortlisted for the Gerald Lampert Memorial award. Yvonne resides in Victoria, BC.
Cost: Free!
Registration: http://www.bcwriters.ca/event-registration/#id=123&cid=1226&wid=1201


Angie Abdou Arsenal 2 12 pm – 1 pm
Event: Brownbag Lunch Reading with Angie Abdou
Location: Nanaimo Harbourfront Library
Description: Angie will be reading from Between: a novel on the complexities of class, gender, parenthood, and desire. Vero and her husband Shane have moved out of the sweet suite above his parents’ garage and found themselves smack in the middle of adulthood―two kids, two cars, two jobs. They are not coping well. In response to their looming domestic breakdown, Vero and Shane get live-in help with their sons―a woman from the Philippines named Ligaya (which means happiness); the children call her LiLi. Vero justifies LiLi’s role in their home by insisting that she is part of their family, and she goes to great lengths in order to ease her conscience. But differences persist; Vero grapples with her overextended role as a mother and struggles to keep her marriage passionate, while LiLi silently bears the burden of a secret she left behind at home. Between offers readers an intriguing, searing portrait of two women from two different cultures. At the same time, it satirizes contemporary love, marriage, and parenthood by exposing the sense of entitlement and superiority at the heart of upper-middle-class North American existence through a ubiquitous presence in it: the foreign nanny. Angie Abdou comically and tragically tackles the issue of international nannies by providing a window on motherhood where it is tangled up with class, career, labour, and desire.
Bio: Angie Abdou has published four books, including three novels: The Bone Cage (a CBC Canada Reads finalist in 2011, MacEwan Book of the Year 2012, and #1 on the CBC Book Club’s Top 10 Sports Books), The Canterbury Trail (a Banff Mountain Book finalist in 2011) and Between. Between was named a “Best of 2014″ book by PRISM Magazine, 49th Shelf, and The Vancouver Sun. In the U.S., New York’s Library Journal listed Between as a Top 13 Indie Pick for Spring 2015.Angie is a professor of Creative Writing at Athabasca University. Her nonfiction has appeared in various magazines and newspapers, including National Post and Elle Magazine. Her fifth book, a novel called What Remains, will be published in September 2017 and she is currently at work on a book-length nonfiction project.
Cost: Free!
Registration: no registration necessary


 12 pm – 4 pm
Event: Games and Treasure Hunts in Downtown Nanaimo
Location: All over downtown Nanaimo, from parks to cafes!
Description: Watch this spot for instructions closer to this event! 
Cost: Free!
Registration: no registration necessary


IMG_22081 pm – 3 pm
Event: Singing with and entertaining children “of all ages”
Location: Nanaimo Harbourfront Library
Description: Writer, Entertainer, Grandfather, sometimes musician Ben Nuttall-Smith will entertain with guitar, comic songs and stories for children of all ages.  Come, join Grandpa Ben and discover magic still happens for the young at heart. With an Education Degree from McGill University, Ben’s earliest teaching assignments in Montreal were as a Music Specialist teacher from Kindergarten to Senior Secondary, specializing in vocal music, choirs, and Musical Theatre. The magic is still there to be enjoyed in children’s classics and comic songs.
Bio:  Ben Nuttall-Smith taught Music, Theatre, Art, and Language until he retired in 1991.  He is a member of The Writers’ Union of Canada and a Past President of the Federation of British Columbia Writers. Ben’s most recent publications include an historical novel – Mad God of the Toltecs, (Rutherford Press 2017), an autobiographical memoir, Discovered In A Scream (Rutherford Press 2017), two books of poetry: Postcards and A Moment In Eternity, (Silver Bow Publishing, 2013), an illustrated biography of Fraser Valley homesteader and pioneer bush pilot, Pat Carey – Flying With White Eagle (Rutherford Press 2016), a 3500 word illustrated children’s book – Henry Hamster Esquire and a book of Haiku for children illustrated by Jan Albertin – Grandpa’s Homestead. Ben has also published several chapbooks and a new venture titled Ten Pun Crossword Puzzles for Young GeniusesBen’s poems and short stories have appeared in numerous anthologies and online publications including All That Uneasy Spring ed. Patrick Lane; Quills Canadian Poetry Magazine; Poemata Canadian Poetry Association; Royal City Poets, Silver Bow Publishing,  Between Earth and Sky, Silver Bow Publishing, Lucidity Journal of Verse, Bear House Publishing, Houston, Texas; Cyclamens and Swords online poetry magazine. Ben was the winner of The Surrey Board of Trade Special Achievement Award 2011 for work as a writer and for service to the writing community. He was also awarded an Honorary Life Membership by the Federation of British Columbia Writers, May 2013, “in recognition of extraordinary service and dedication to the ideal of Writers Helping Writers”.
Cost: Free!
Registration: no registration necessary


 1 pm – 3 pm
Event: Living Room
Location: Literacy Nanaimo
Description: An Informal Reading Circle. All welcome!
Bios: coming soon
Cost: Free!
Registration: no registration necessary


 3 pm – 5 pm
Event: Stone Soup: Collaborations Through Culture Days
Location: Nanaimo Harbourfront Library
Description: From Sept. 29-Oct.1 Canadians will be celebrating Culture Days, the country’s largest public participation campaign for the arts. Now entering its 8th year, Culture Days invites the public behind-the-scenes for a hands-on, interactive experience with creative people in their community. In this session, BC Culture Days Manager, Nazanin Shoja will be sharing the many ways writers, publishers, educators, and literature enthusiasts can take part in this annual grassroots event. This is an opportunity to network with other writers and community organizers, as well as to brainstorm ideas for potential collaborations during the 2017 Culture Days weekend.
Bio: coming soon
Cost: Free!
Registration: http://www.bcwriters.ca/event-registration/#id=118&cid=1226&wid=1201


 3:30 pm 
Event: FBCW Annual General Meeting
Location: CHANGED! Vancouver Island Conference Center
Description: For FBCW Members Only–including brand new ones! Provincially incorporated non-profit organizations are required by law to hold an Annual General Meeting (AGM). An AGM is an important part of the democratic life of an organization.The purpose of the Annual General Meeting is varied, including approving the audited financial statements, reading reports from and to the board, approving amendments and additions to bylaws, calling for nomination for the board, and electing new directors.
The AGM will also be an opportunity to share news from the organization and hear from its membership. 

Cost: Free!
Registration: no registration necessary


 7:30 pm – 10 pm
Event: If I tell you this: master poets and storytellers will hold you spellbound with their original work
Location: Vancouver Island Convention Center
Description: Doors open at 7, event starts at 7:30. Performers include Julie Paul, Rachel Dunsten Miller, Margaret Murphy, and Yvonne Blomer

julie paul headshot 2016Bios:  
Julie Paul is the author of three books: two collections of short fiction, The Jealousy Bone (Emdash, 2008), The Pull of the Moon (Brindle & Glass, 2014) and a new poetry collection, The Rules of the Kingdom (MQUP, 2017). The Pull of the Moon was awarded both an IPPY award and the Victoria Book Prize and was named a Top 100 Book in the Globe and Mail. Her essay “It Not Only Rises, It Shines,” won last year’s Edna Staebler Personal Essay Award from The New Quarterly and her story “The Expansion” won The Rusty Toque’s 2016 Chapbook Award. She lives in Victoria with her family, where, in addition to writing, she works as a Registered Massage Therapist and teaches writing classes at Camosun College. She’ll also be teaching a one-day class at Royal Roads in April, and a five-day intensive at Metchosin International Summer School of the Arts in late June. Tonight, she’ll be reading a selection of poems from her recent first collection, The Rules of the Kingdom.

rachel sun (2) (1)Rachel Dunstan Muller is the author of four trade-published juvenile novels. Her first, When the Curtain Rises, was translated into Norwegian and Swedish. Rachel encountered her first oral storyteller while living temporarily in Northern Ireland, and found herself spellbound by the spoken narrative. Upon her return to Canada she began writing and telling her own stories, primarily to adult audiences. She particularly enjoys crafting historical tales “with a speculative twist”. Rachel shares her original stories in schools, libraries, coffee houses, concerts and festivals. She lives with her husband and children in Ladysmith, BC.   

 

MM_website_1 copyMargaret Murphy shares many passions: storytelling, writing and teaching. As a tribute to the women who traveled before us, Margaret celebrates the stories of women of courage and grace. She has created and presented stories about Canadian peace activist Muriel Duckworth, Vancouver Island pioneer women, Cougar Annie and Sylvia Stark, poet/recitalist E. Pauline Johnson. In addition, Margaret has co-created and presented the story of modern hospice founder, Dame Cicely Saunders. A founding member of Nanaimo’s Around Town Tellers, she coaches individuals and groups in the art and craft of storytelling. Recently, Margaret launched her new story: The Wideness and Wonder of Georgia O’Keeffe at the Nanaimo Fringe Festival. Story remains the connecting thread in her work as community builder (www.Margaretmurphyspeaker.com)

author pic 2015Yvonne Blomer is Victoria, BC’s Poet Laureate. Her most recent collection of poems is As if a Raven (Palimpsest Press, 2014) and in the spring of 2017 her travel memoir Sugar Ride: Cycling from Hanoi to Kuala Lumpur will be released with Palimpsest Press.
Cost: $7 members of the FBCW, $10 non-members or at the door

Registration: http://www.bcwriters.ca/event-registration/#id=113&cid=1226&wid=1201

 

 

 

 


Sunday, April 30th


 10 am – 12 pm
Event: Developing a Strong Narrative Theme: a workshop with Jennifer Manuel
Location: Vancouver Island Conference Center, Dodds Narrows B
Description: Developing a Strong Narrative Theme: A story dramatizes an argument about life. Learn three steps to refining your argument, or theme, then use that argument to weld meaning and emotion on every page. Explore how a theme can guide your decisions about narrative structure and scene development.
Bio: Jennifer Manuel has achieved acclaim for her short fiction. Her novel, The Heaviness of Things That Float, has been called a “remarkable novel deeply of our time and place” by the Vancouver Sun. Jennifer has mentored writers from all around the world and for the past three years has been a TA for Sarah Selecky’s The Story Intensive. Calgary writer Susan Carpenter states that Jennifer’s “thoughtful and supportive manner combined with her extensive knowledge makes her the best mentor I have had on my writing journey.”
Cost: $25 for members of the FBCW, $35 for non-members
Registration: http://www.bcwriters.ca/event-registration/#id=119&cid=1226&wid=1201


 10 am – 12 pm
Event: Heritage Walk Downtown Nanaimo
Location: Starting at Swy-a-lana lagoon
Description: Join the City of Nanaimo’s Heritage Planner (Chris Sholberg) and Community Archivist (Christine Meutzner) for a walk through time in Nanaimo’s downtown core.  Learn about some of the City’s most important heritage buildings and the people who helped transform Nanaimo from a Hudson Bay Company coal town to the diverse and cultural vibrant City it is today.
Bio:
Chris Sholberg bio:

Chris is the City of Nanaimo’s Culture/Heritage Planner.  He has been employed in various planning positions with the City since 1992, including posts as the City’s Land Use and Community Planner.  Since 1999, he has administered the City’s Heritage Conservation Program.

Christine Meutzner bio:

Established in 1991, the Nanaimo Community Archives strives to collect significant records (textual records, photographs, maps, blueprints, etc.) of the Nanaimo area and make them available to the public.  Christine has been the Community Archivist since the mid-1990s.coming soon
Cost: suggested $5 donation to Literacy Nanaimo
Registration: http://www.bcwriters.ca/event-registration/#id=120&cid=1226&wid=1201


 1 pm – 3 pm
Event: Beginning at the end: ideas for promoting books with Craig Spence
Location: Nanaimo Harbourfront Library
Description: Many writers consider completion of the final draft of their manuscript the end of the creative process, but unless we get excited from the outset about promoting our books and consider plans for getting them into the hands of readers an essential and creative phase of the writing cycle, odds are our stories won’t ever come alive in the minds of readers. This workshop will engage participants in a dialogue about opportunities for promoting books successfully in the 21st Century. Call 250-208-3825 or email to find out more.
Bio: Craig is a journalist, communications specialist and published author. He is exploring new ways of promoting and selling books including direct-to-web publishing; serialization of novels into chapbooks; spinoff stories for publication online and in newspapers; use of online literary ‘trailers’; growing readership from a ‘home base’; focusing on the strengths of literature in a world inundated with alternative modes of storytelling. Find out more at CraigSpenceWriter.ca.
Cost: Free!
Registration: http://www.bcwriters.ca/event-registration/#id=121&cid=1226&wid=1201


 1 pm – 3 pm
Event: Unconfirmed Workshop
Location:
Description: coming soon
Bio: coming soon
Cost:
Registration: coming soon


 

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