(Book) Love in the Time of Covid

The need to read.  The urge to write.

Neither of these instincts have been stifled by Covid-19.  But this lengthy pandemic has increased people’s desire for human connection.  That is the inspiration behind the 2021 Denman Island Readers and Writers Festival scheduled for mid-July 2021.

The festival will be made up of three separate streams:

The Writing Week is an intensive five-day online workshop scheduled for July 12-16.  It is geared to writers who have a manuscript or piece of writing well underway.  It will be led by Vancouver novelist and short story author, Caroline Adderson.  This is the fourth year Caroline has organized this popular program.  It has received enthusiastic reviews from participants who appreciated the small class size and constructive feedback from both Caroline and fellow participants.  This is a wonderful opportunity to hone writing skills in a supportive setting.  Class size is limited to eight participants and registration opens May 1 through the Festival website.  Participants will be required to submit their manuscripts in advance and their work will be shared with other participants. 

From July 16 to 18, five BC authors will host the Writers Workshop series.  Each of these online events will involve readings, writing exercises and conversations about a wide range of contemporary challenges and story line opportunities for emerging writers.  Workshop leaders are an eclectic and intriguing mix.  Shaena Lambert will use her most recent novel Petra to discuss Engaged Fiction and Memoir in this Climate.  Joseph Dandurand will include readings from his body of work to explore Indigenous Storytelling.  Award winning author/historian Wendy Wickwire (At the Bridge:  James Teit and an Anthropology of Belonging) will offer BC History on the Page.  Kevin Chong’s prescient The Plague will be the centrepiece for his workshop on Pandemic Fiction.  Vancouver-based educator, activist, community organizer and spoken word poet Jillian Christmas will lead Spoken Word Workshop.





Additional information is on the website and registration for all workshops will be available from May 1st.

“The Denman community is so ready to begin a new post-covid chapter,” says Stewart Goodings, festival co-chair.  “And that is why the third event, Turning the Page, is exciting.”  The evenings of July 17/18 will celebrate Denman writing talent in all its forms:  written, work, spoken, and musical.  Festival organizers are working with our local writers group to consider proposals from local writers.  We plan to feature an interesting and varied line-up of uniquely Denman entertainment.  (This is a local event and subject to public health regulations.)

Gail Dugas
April 2021

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