Save the dates! Across the country, organizers and volunteers extraordinaire are programming epic celebrations of books and the amazing people who write them. Find out what's happening in your literary neighbourhood.
The spring festival season season kicks off with the Growing Room Literary & Arts Festival in Vancouver, BC, running March 11–15, with Aisha Sasha John, Alex Leslie, Alicia Elliott, Amanda Leduc, and Andrea Warner...and these are only a handful of exciting artists at the top of their alphabetized list—just wait til you check out the rest!
Versefest 2020, Ottawa's International Poetry Festival, takes place March 24–29, with Karen Solie, Armand Garnet Ruffo, Ben Ladouceur, Canisia Lubrin, Gwen Benaway, Kaie Kellough, Robin Richardson, Shazia Hafiz Ramji, Sheree Fitch, and many others.
A spectacular list of events take …
Summer might be approaching its end, but literary festival season is just beginning! Find out what's happening near you, or even farther afield—because literary festivals make for good road trips. Just saying.
Eden Mills Writers' Festival is back September 6–8 in Eden Mills, ON, (there's a free shuttle bus from Guelph!) with a spectacular lineup including Marina Endicott, Anakana Schofield, Lynn Coady, Terry Fallis, Anthony De Sa, Emma Donoghue, Farah Heron, Amy Jones, Alix Ohlin, Jesse Thistle, Jessica Westhead, Marissa Stapley, Amy Spurway, and many more!
The Dunedin Literary Festival is back with Words in the Woods (near Creemore, ON) on September 14, with fun for the whole family, a special musical event with world-renowned botanist Diana Beresford-Kroeger and Juno-award winner Sarah Harmer, and other authors including Anar Ali, Joanna Goodman, Ann Hui, Nicole Lundrigan, Bianca Marais, Nathan Ripley, Jennifer Robson, and Jessica Westhead.
Since early spring, literary festivals across the country have been bringing readers and writers together, celebrating the goodness of books and reading, and it's been the most glorious build-up to this moment right now where the literary festival season tips over into fall, which is when everything happens.
Find out what's going on near you!
The legendary Eden Mills Writers' Festival returns for its 30th year September 7–9 in Eden Mills, ON, with many events, and author readings on September 9 including Madeleine Thien, Rawi Hage, Esi Edugyan, Thomas King, Dennis Lee, Sharon Bala, Omar El Akkad, and more.
Get ready for more words in the woods with the Dunedin Literary Festival near Creemore, ON, on September 8 with authors Heather O'Neill, Karma Brown, Tish Cohen, Uzma Jalaluddin, Wayne Grady, Arif Anwar, Amy Stuart, David Demchuk, Claudia Dey, Iain Reid, and Heidi Sopinka, plus a kids' tent, and a lot more fun!
Mark your calendars, everybody! Across the country, incredible festival volunteers have been conspiring to pull off amazing literary celebrations over the next few months and the season promises to be delightful.
The Galiano Literary Festival runs February 23-25 on Galiano Island, BC, with Gurjinder Basran, George Bowering, David Chariandy, Wayne Johnston, Theresa Kishkan, Kyo Maclear, Arleen Paré, Michael Redhill, Jennifer Robson, Martina Scholtens, Timothy Taylor, and many other terrific writers.
The Growing Room Feminist Literary Festival returns for its second year from March 1-4 in Vancouver, BC, with Amber Dawn, Caroline Adderson, Carleigh Baker, Gwen Benaway, Jen Currin, Maggie de Vries, Farzana Doctor, Leanne Dunic, Chelene Knight, Lydia Kwa, Jen Sookfong Lee, Silvia Moreno-Garcia, Casey Plett, Emily Pohl-Weary, Chelsea Rooney, Clea Roberts, Bev Sellars, Vivek Shraya and Shamik Bilgi (Too Attached), Mallory Tater, Betsy Warland, Rita Wong, Elaine Woo, and that's just a fraction of a long list of great writers who will be featured.
Summertime is festival time! All across the country this summer readers and writers will be gathering to celebrate stories, books, and the wonders of the written word. Whether a festival is happening in your neighbourhood or at the site of your vacation destination, there is something for everyone. Find out what's happening near you...
This year, the children's festival WordPlay takes place in conjunction with the grand opening of Sheree Fitch's dreamy new venture, Mabel Murple's Book Shoppe and Dreamery, on July 3 in River John, NS, with Alan Syliboy, Marie-Louise Gay, and plenty of celebration.
From July 6-9, the Elephant Mountain Literary Festival ("Arguably one of the most beautiful lit fest locales going," according to the Toronto Star) in Nelson, BC, features authors including Leesa Dean, Lee Maracle, Joy Kogawa, and more.
With the arrival of September, Canadian litfest season goes full-throttle. Here are all the details on what's going down at festivals across the country.
The Eden Mills Festival runs September 16–18 in Eden Mills, ON, (near Guelph), and the schedule is always as excellent as the village is pretty. Featured authors include Kamal Al-Solaylee, Cherie Dimaline, Alissa York, Cordelia Strube, Soraya Peerbaye, George Elliott Clarke, Helen Humphreys, Katherine Govier, Maureen Jennings, Lisa Moore, Jael Richardson, and others.
The Telling Tale Festival in Rockton, ON, (near Hamilton) is a terrific day out for families, with featured authors, storytellers, and illustrators for young readers including Scott Chantler, Jon-Erik Lappano, Andrew Larsen, Lindsay Mattick, Ruth Ohi, Kenneth Oppel, Barbara Reid, Bill Slavin, Kevin Sylvester, Jeremy Tankard, Vikki VanSickle, and many more.
As of early morning last Saturday, summer is here, which means that Literary Festival Season will be arriving not long after. To ensure you make the most of it, we've once again compiled a handy guide to literary festivals across the country from here 'til November. Check out what's happening in your area, or at your vacation destination.
Or maybe even plan a trip around one of these stellar fests, so that new Canadian books and new Canadian places might be discovered together.
In Nelson, BC, the Elephant Mountain Literary Festival runs July 10–13 with the theme of "Intersections: Geography, Genre, Genius." Scheduled presenters include Angie Abdou, Gail Bowen, Daryn Collier, Douglas Gibson, Donna Morrissey, and Eleanor Wachtel. The Lakefield Literary Festival kicks things off July 11–13 in Lakefield, ON, with featured authors including Charlotte Gray, Lawrence Hill, Maureen Jennings, Richard Wagamese, and Sheree Fitch. This year, Read by the Sea returns to River John, NS, for its 15th anniversary. Arrive at the Legion Gardens to spend the afternoon with writers including Guy Vanderhaeghe, Sharon Butala, Steven Galloway, and more! This year, the Saskatchewan Festival of Words runs from July 17–20 in Moose Jaw, SK, the lineup including acclaimed authors such as Beverly Brenna, Ted Barris, Cassie Stocks, Claire Cameron, Gail Bowen, Miriam Toews, Steven Galloway, Wayne Johnston, and Merilyn Simonds.
The Leacock Summer Festival takes place in Orillia, ON, July 21–27. Schedu …
The Galiano Island Literary Festival runs from February 22 to 24 in Galiano Island BC, featuring authors including Robert Bringhurst, Kevin Chong, Bill Gaston, Pauline Holdstock, Billie Livingston, Annabel Lyon, Billeh Nickerson, Nancy Richler and Jan Zwicky.
From March 12-17, Versefest happens in Ottawa with the line-up still to be confirmed.
The Ottawa International Writers Festival features many great events throughout April, with authors including Alexander McCall Smith, Will Ferguson, Nancy-Jo Cullen and Tamas Dobozy, Amber Dawn, Iain Reid, Cathy Marie Buchanan, Saleema Nawaz, Michael Crummey and many more!
GritLit is the literary festival in Hamilton ON, and takes place from April 3-April 7. Featured authors include Roo Borson, Vincent Lam, Tanis Rideout, Elizabeth Ruth, Tamas Dobozy, Rawi Hage, Cordelia Strube, Maureen Jennings, Robert Rotenberg, Grace O'Connell and Madeleine Thien. The line-up looks fabulous.
The Prince Edward County Authors Festival happens April 12-13, with featured authors including Iain Reid, Susan Swan, Ania Szado, and Sean …
"Read a Book, Share a Story" is the theme of TD Children’s Book Week 2012, which kicks off on May 6 and sends 29 Canadian authors, illustrators and storytellers across the country to share their work and bookish passion with the public through readings held in public libraries, community centres, bookstores and local schools.
“We are thrilled that, with TD’s support, these authors, illustrators and storytellers will help children across the country discover the joy of reading,” says Charlotte Teeple, Executive Director of The Canadian Children's Book Centre, TD's partner in the venture.
This is the 35th year that Children’s Book Week has taken place. In 1977, the event began with just 11 participating authors, including the much celebrated Dennis Lee (of Alligator Pie fame, among many other books), who remembers “the excitement as so many writers starting to come out of the woodwork. Publishers, librarians, teachers and parents were realizing that good stuff was coming from their own time and place.”
If you're a reader, to live in Toronto is an embarrassment of riches. We have access not only to year-round literary events, many of which are free, but to many authors themselves. Publishers, as well. Enough so that it becomes easy to forget just how much there is to see and do. It's not to say that we don't revel in our fandom; but, how we invest in our community is, perhaps, a little strategic. Who. When. Why. How. I'd wager to suggest that we're not as open to surprises as we are to supporting our own. Which is to say that to thrive in the trenches of the Toronto lit scene is to limit your view of the larger battlefield. (I think it's safe to say we're at war with ourselves, yes?)
At some point, I started to pay closer attention to attendees. While many were fans of one author or another, it seemed just as many were using events as an audition in order to determine whether or not to invest in the purchase of an author's book, or which book should there be a variety of authors on display. We've become too familiar with our community, perhaps in the same way a Los Angeles native thinks nothing of standing in the line at Anthropologie behind an actor at The Grove. True, writers are just people. But, actually, no, they're not. They're rock stars. They move and in …
This Sunday September 25th, Canadians coast-to-coast will take to the street for The Word on the Street National Book & Magazine Festival. This year the festival, which began in Toronto in 1990, will take place in six Candian cities: Vancouver, Lethbridge, Saskatoon, Kitchener, Toronto and Halifax. With its tagline, "Celebrating Reading, Advocating Literacy," WOTS is a chance for Canadians to learn about and support local literacy causes, as well as connect with some of the people behind the best books and magazines this country has to offer.
In Vancouver the festival runs for three days (September 23-25). Not to be missed is Charlotte Gill, whose book Eating Dirt has just been shortlisted for the Hilary Weston Writers' Trust Prize for nonfiction. Also be sure to check out poet Aisha Sasha John, Wayde Compton (whose book After Canaan is up for the Vancouver Book Award), Jen Sookfong Lee, kids writer Vikki VanSikkle, Kevin Chong, short story writer Samuel Thomas Martin, Campie author Barbara Stewart, Governor General's Award-winning writer John Vaillant, awesome poet Sachiko Murakami, and Andrew Nikiforuk,whose most recent book is Empire of the Beetle.
Angie Abdou (whose novel The Bone Cage was a 2011 Canada Reads contender) reads at the Word on the Street in Leth …
Literary Festival season starts early here in Canada, with events such as Salon du Livre du Grand Sudbury, Niagara Literary Arts Festival, Whitehorse Poetry Festival, the Frye Festival in Moncton NB, and the Festival littéraire international de Montréal Metropolis bleu already behind us. Now that summer is officially here, however, things will be kicking into high gear, and you'll be hard-pressed to find a Canadian summer weekend without a literary festival in it. And so to help you navigate that busy calendar, we're pleased to bring you the 2011 Literary Festival Guide, celebrating books from coast to coast.
The Scream Literary Festival runs in Toronto from July 6-11. It's the last hurrah for this legendary fest, which culminates in an event in the middle of High Park with readers including Christian Bök, Dani Couture, Sheila Heti and Misha Glouberman. The Saskatchewan Festival of Words takes place in Moose Jaw from July 14-17, featurning Helen Humphreys, Susan Juby, Charlotte Gray, Ryan Knighton and Robert J. Sawyer amidst an absolutely stellar line-up. And then there's the Lakefield Literary Festival, in Lakefield ON, which happens July 15-17, with readers including Sarah Selecky, Trevor Cole, Alexander MacLeod, Merilyn Simonds, Suzanne Desrochers, and Lisa …