The mission statement of the Denman Island Readers and Writers Festival is to bring together readers and writers in a friendly and informal setting that provides opportunities for the intermingling of guest writers and their audiences. The aim is to include a broad diversity of writers in terms of age, gender, ethnicity and genre with a particular focus on emerging writers and writers of Indigenous ancestry. It is a priority for the festival to be a broad-based event that is inclusive and responsive to the Denman Island community and is an enhancement of the cultural life of the island population.
The Denman Island Readers and Writers Festival seeks to achieve its mission statement by:
- Placing a priority on featuring BC writers while including writers from other parts of Canada or the world as opportunities and budgets allow. The carbon footprint and transportation costs involved in bringing writers from a distance will be a consideration in the selection process.
- Inviting a mix of innovative, emerging and noteworthy writers.
- Seeking authors with effective presentation skills.
- Including (when possible) some related entertainment or spoken word components during the festival that extend the concept of narrative expression and provide contrast to the rest of the programming.
- Including authors whose work seeks to raise issues of social justice, environmental concern and political criticism.
- Seeking writers who enjoy the festival’s well-organized yet casual atmosphere as demonstrated by their interest in taking part in informal opportunities to meet and talk with members of their audience.
- Maximizing opportunities for community involvement in the festival through volunteering, billeting of writers, provision of meals, and sponsorship by local businesses.
- Encouraging students from the area to attend the festival.
- Offering a diverse range of sessions, from solo readings to panels to writing workshops of varying intensity.
- Supporting Denman writers to present their own work at the festival and to share their writing during the year.