25th Vancouver Writers Fest comes to town
By Eric Wilkins, Staff Writer
Are you an avid reader? Or perhaps an aspiring writer (might I suggest checking out The Other Press)? Then the event for you is right around the corner! From October 16 to 21, scores of authors will flock to our beautiful city for the 25th Vancouver Writers Fest (formerly the Vancouver International Writers Festival). These six days of literary bliss are set to take place on Granville Island and will be jam-packed with over 70 events.
The festival seeks to engage its audience through a series of interviews, panel discussions, readings, and much, much more. In an effort to attract people of all ages, the festival has created several events specifically for younger audiences. From the predictably titled “Kid Stuff” (Kindergarten to grade three), to “Books to TV and Back Again” (grades 8-12), to the more refined sessions, the festival promises to have something for everyone.
However, if star power is what you’re looking for, then you won’t be disappointed. Celebrated Canadian author Margaret Atwood is due to make several appearances at the festival. The former Arthur C. Clarke Award-winner will be featured in “Beyond Survival,” “What If?,” and “A Tribute To Patrick Lane.” Well-known British novelist Martin Amis, author of Money: A Suicide Note (1984), will be on hand to talk about his latest book, Lionel Asbo: State of England on the Sunday just before the start of the festival. Also featured as one of the main attractions is International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award winner, Alistair MacLeod. The Saskatchewan-born writer took home the prestigious prize for his novel No Great Mischief (1999), and was commissioned by the Vancouver Writers Fest to pen a short story in commemoration of its 25th anniversary, which he will read from in “Remembrance.”
But the show doesn’t stop there. There are literally dozens of authors not on the front page who are more than capable in their own write. Fans of the young adult Silverwing Saga series will be pleased to see Governor General’s Award-winning author, Kenneth Oppel, present for “Flights of Fantasy” and “Stars Aligned” panels. Another notable is Douglas College’s own recently published author, John Vigna, whose book Bull Head was released in September—Vigna will take to the stage in “Life Stories” and “All in the Family.”
The festival closes with an appearance by the renowned environmentalist David Suzuki in “The State and Fate of this Small Blue Planet,” with another one of the world’s finest scientists, Tim Flannery.
While some tickets are sold out already, there are still many left for other wonderful panels. For more information, go to www.writersfest.bc.ca and check it out!