Iain Reid and Meira Cook headline at Saturday Night Gala
The Whistler Writers Festival offers 13 author reading events and 12 workshops this fall and there is something for everyone. Poetry events, free events for children, memoir and story writing workshops, panels about fiction and non-fiction — and of course, there’s the Saturday Night Gala on Oct. 15 featuring Iain Reid and Méira Cook, moderated by Marsha Lederman.
“The Saturday Night Gala is one of my favourite events because the discussion is always so rich and layered, and this year we’ve got two incredible writers talking about the themes in their latest work,” said Rebecca Wood Barrett, festival artistic director. “In their novels, the authors weave important social issues and commentaries into their stories and really get into the nature of conformity, defining oneself, art, productivity and what it really comes down to — the relationships that define us.”
The Booklovers’ Literary Salon on Oct. 14 also promises a thoughtful conversation. Festival founder Stella Harvey interviews Marsha Lederman about her work, Kiss the Red Stairs: The Holocaust, Once Removed, in a book-club-style chat. Lederman’s book delves into history and science to understand intergenerational trauma and epigenetics to explore the Holocaust, trauma, parenting, community, and hope.
Friday night sees the return of another special event — The Literary Cabaret: We’re Back, Live Baby! In the past two years because of the pandemic, this sell-out event had to be pre-recorded, but this year the music and readings are once again live at the Maury Young Arts Centre. Guest authors include Amber Cowie, Joseph Dandurand, Norma Dunning, Gary Geddes, Tamar Glouberman, Hasan Namir, Mari-Lou Rowley and Shyam Selvadurai, who will all be reading from their latest books accompanied by music by the West Coast Front band. The winners of the Whistler Independent Book Awards will also be announced on Oct. 14.
Crime fiction still dominates, so our Thrills and Chills: Mystery and Crime Writers Panel (Oct. 15) moderated by Amber Cowie is back again. She’ll be chatting with Charles Demers, Daniel Kalla, Anna Pitoniak and Sandra SG Wong to uncover the secrets behind their suspense. Cowie will also be giving the audience an opportunity to solve a mystery and one participating detective will get to take home a prize pack of the authors’ books.
“Amber makes the event fun and interactive and we hear again and again from audiences that we have to bring it back each year,” Wood Barrett said. “It’s such a popular genre and this year’s authors all have their own special spin on it.”
There’s a brand new event for Sunday morning. The Sunday Book Talk: Coffee and Conversation is a cozy, intimate event with Cody Caetano, Lisa Moore, Heather O’Neill and Jamal Saeed. Ease into the morning with a breakfast pastry and a cuppa while learning about what makes great authors tick. Wayne Grady moderates and will lead the discussion through the tangles of family history, the nature of conflict, and love and acceptance in all its beautiful and terrifying forms.
All of these events will be in-person and online so that audiences can join from anywhere. For the full list of workshops and events, visit our website. Tickets for in-person and online events are on sale now. The Whistler Writers Festival is Oct. 13-16, 2022.