Listen in at Writers Festival

Step into the ring or slam it at Camosun

A collective of writers who miss the International Literary Arts Festival that was the highlight of spring in Victoria for many years has organized the Victoria Writers Festival this weekend.

The group has organized two days of events to be held at Camosun College.

Today (Oct. 12) events will include Literary Tapas, readings by Arleen Pare, Susan Musgrave, Tricia Dower, Bill Gaston, and Anakana Schofield. Fill your senses with readings by five extraordinary westcoast writers. Novels, short fiction, poetry and hybridized true stories – a delectable assortment of flavours. The event is hosted by the CEO of the Greater Victoria Public Library, Maureen Sawa. It takes place at 7:30 p.m.

Or choose a Step Into the Ring Write-Off, where you can sharpen your pencils for an on-the-spot writing slam. Three events (five-minute haiku, 10-minute obscure poetic form, 25-minute free verse using given words). The winner takes home $200. Hosted by Jane Bee, with performances by City of Victoria Poet Laureate Janet Rogers, Bee and Skawt Chonzz at 7:30 p.m.

Following Step Into The Ring and Literary Tapas, mix and mingle, get your new books signed by their authors, have a glass of wine and sway to jazz at 9:15 p.m.

On Sat., Oct. 13, the festival continues with Writing Workshops, non-fiction and poetry workshops with award-winning writers from 10 a.m. to noon. The Pacific Comics Art Festival Panel with Brandon Graham, Marian Churchland, and Simon Roy at 11 a.m. The Wild and the Worldly, readings and panel discussion with Jan Zwicky, Robert Bringhurst, Melanie Siebert, Tim Lilburn, hosted by Elizabeth May at 1 p.m.

Meet the Creators, where you can talk shop with Pacific Comics Art Festival’s Brandon Graham, Marian Churchland, Simon Roy, members of Cloudscape Comics Society, and Ken Steacy and Joan Steacy at 1 p.m.

The Young and the Restless at 2:45 p.m. includes readings and panel discussion with Daniel Griffin, Yasuko Thanh, Steven Price and Craig Boyko, hosted by Matthew Hooton. The Bendy Truth offers readings and panel discussion on creative non-fiction with Madeline Sonik, Christin Geall, and Monique Gray Smith, hosted by David Leach at 2:45 p.m. The Carol Shields Lecture Surviving Progress will be presented by novelist, essayist, historian Ronald Wright at 4:30 p.m.

Evening events include Saturday Night Fevers, readings by Patricia Young, Esi Edugyan, and Brian Brett at 7:30 p.m.

All events take place at Camosun College, most in the Gibson Auditorium. All cost $10 ($8 for students), except Step Into the Ring and Meet the Creators, which are $3 at the door. Festival passes are available for $30. Writing workshops are $20. Order tickets and passes and register for workshops at Or go to Munro’s Books, Ivy’s Bookshop, Camosun College Bookstore or Legends Comics.


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