Friday, October 24

37

Writing Your Life

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Lorna Goodison
Susan Olding
Andreas Schroeder
Russell Wangersky

10 – 11:30 am
Granville Island Stage
$14 + $2 facility surcharge / $7 student groups

One of the best ways to make sense of your life is to pin it to paper, to write about it till patterns emerge. Memoir, the literary essay or, in Andreas Schroeder’s case, adding a light veneer of fiction, are the ways in which these four authors have chosen to explore the significant events of their lives. But writing your life leads not only to insights, but also to questions of self-exposure, how much care you must take in writing about others, and the central concern about what is true and what can be imaginatively recreated. Join these fine writers as they expose how they transform their “stuff of life” into literature.


 

38

Flights of Fantasy

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Andrew Davidson
Tristan Hughes
Elizabeth Knox

10 – 11:30 am
Revue Theatre
$14 + $1.50 facility surcharge / $7 student groups

Beyond realism lies a realm of fiction where ghosts and the supernatural, the fantastic and the mysterious, create mesmerizing images that linger long after you close the book. Three authors whose work will linger in your mind’s eye take the stage this morning to talk about writing the fantastic. Elizabeth Knox imagines dreamhunters who collect people’s dreams and turn them into dramatic performances for theatrical presentation. In Andrew Davidson’s The Gargoyle, a mysterious woman caring for an injured man insists they were once lovers in medieval Germany. And in Tristan Hughes’ Revenant, a ghost, real or metaphorical, is at the heart of this compelling novel. A must-see for fans of hauntings and the gothic.


This event is sponsored by Douglas & McIntyre Publishing Group.

 

39

Beyond Atonement

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David Bergen
Joseph Boyden
Gail Jones

10 – 11:30 am
Performance Works
$14 + $.50 facility surcharge / $7 for student groups

In recent years both the Australian and Canadian governments have apologized for their treatment of Aboriginal peoples. The clash of cultures is central to the past and present of both countries. Canadian writers David Bergen and Joseph Boyden and Australian Gail Jones have written insightful novels about aboriginal–white relations from very different perspectives. What will it take to heal the wounds of the past? How can we manage our contemporary relationships more successfully? And what role can literature play in reconciliation? Join in the conversation with these fine novelists.


 

40

Freestyle X 5

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Craig Boyko
Ivan E. Coyote
Andrew Hood
Melanie Little
Mary Swan

10 – 11:30 am
Waterfront Theatre
$14 + $ .50 facility surcharge / $7 for student groups

Novels seem to get all the attention, but many fiction writers launch their careers with a collection of short stories. This sometimes overlooked form allows the writer to engage in literary ventriloquism, venture through time and space and inhabit the skin of others with a freedom that novels can’t sustain. Lyrical or satirical, saucy or sombre, the stylistic scope of short fiction is the writer and reader’s delight. To the following adjectives to describe the short story— captivating, enthralling, compelling and alluring— add satisfying when in the hands of these five voices.


This event is sponsored by the UBC Writing Centre.

 

41

Founding Father

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Richard Gwyn

10 – 11:30 am
PTC Studio
$14/ $7 for student groups

Richard Gwyn’s prize-winning John A. is the first full-scale biography of Canada’s first prime minister in half a century. Colourful, intensely human and with a full measure of human frailties, MacDonald was beyond question Canada’s most important prime minister. A vivid, multi-dimensional portrait of a fascinating character and his times, Gwyn’s John A. casts fresh eyes on our founding father and gives history a new life. Winner of the prestigious Charles Taylor Prize for literary non-fiction.


 

42

Cement Shoes

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Mark Billingham
John Connolly
Lisa Lutz
Linda L. Richards
Host: Stephen E. Miller
1 – 2:30 pm
Granville Island Stage
$14+ $2.00 facility surcharge / $7 for student groups

Crime fiction is an equal-opportunity genre. It’s all-inclusive—from hard-boiled mysteries featuring gun-toting molls, to comedic capers, to gritty realistic tales that take on hard-edged social issues. Crime fiction also makes room for all kinds of brilliant writers. Led by Stephen E. Miller, the gang will talk about whose fictional footprints they are following and how they sleuthed out their literary voices.


 

43

Wasserman & Company

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Andrew Davidson
Amitav Ghosh
Linda Grant
Host: Jerry Wasserman
1 – 2:30 pm
Revue Theatre
$14 + $1.50 facility surcharge / $7 for student groups
This event is sold out.

Jerry Wasserman has delighted Festival audiences in past years with his interviews. This year, he engages three intensely imaginative writers in discussion about the world of words and the worlds they have created. Although you may not have heard of Winnipegger Andrew Davidson yet, you will this fall as his extraordinary debut novel, The Gargoyle, is published—in Canada, the USA and the UK, with translations set for 18 other jurisdictions next year. Well-known Indian author Amitav Ghosh joins Wasserman to talk about Sea of Poppies, a sweeping historical saga that spans the lush poppy fields of the Ganges, the high seas and the backstreets of China. And Orange Prize winner Linda Grant introduces her new novel, The Clothes on Their Backs, which will have you thinking about the clothes we choose to wear and the personalities we dress ourselves in.

Amitav Ghosh's appearance at the Festival has been supported by a generous donation to the Alma Lee Legacy Fund by Jab Sidhoo.


 

44

The Mini Poetry Bash

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Kevin Connolly
Jen Hadfield
Troy Jollimore
Patrick Lane
Jeanette Lynes
Nadine McInnis

1 – 2:30 pm
Waterfront Theatre
$14 + $.50 facility surcharge / $7 for student groups
This event is sold out.

Take your mind to another realm with this eagerly awaited afternoon of poetry. The Mini Poetry Bash is an annual favourite with students, teachers and poetry fans alike. This year the Festival has invited exceptional and award-winning poets from the United States, the United Kingdom and Canada who can conjure lasting images with the flick of a phrase, bring a smile to your face or a tear to your eye. Poetry is emotion compressed and we’ve squeezed some amazing feelings into this hour-and-a-half experience.


 

45

High Style

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Stéphane Audeguy
Kenneth J. Harvey
Lee Henderson
Gail Jones

1 – 2:30 pm
PTC Studio
$14 / $7 for student groups

A simple, straightforward narrative can be riveting, but there is added pleasure when a writer puts as much emphasis on the how of storytelling as on the what happens next. While Stéphane Audeguy writes with a savoury mixture of science, history and dreamy prose, Kenneth J. Harvey employs a multiplicity of voices in his unconventional story, Blackstrap Hawco. Lee Henderson’s debut novel, The Man Game, uses an edgy and anarchistic style to tell of life in a pioneer town. Australian author Gail Jones doesn’t adhere to a clear-cut structure, rather she places pieces of prose to form her story in her new novel, Sorry. Come hear how four contemporary masters use style to great literary effect.


 

46

The Literary Cabaret

Ivan E. Coyote
Sal Ferreras
Damon Galgut
Amitav Ghosh
Kenneth J. Harvey
Lisa Lutz
Kinnie Starr
Host: Salvador Ferreras
8:00 pm
Performance Works
$25 + $1.00 facility surcharge
This event is sold out.

It’s quite simply magic that happens among Sal Ferreras, his chameleonic band Poetic License and the authors who take the stage tonight. This wildly popular event blends music and literature in ways that can only be described as breathtaking. Audiences are guaranteed a sensory spectacular, an evening of jaw-dropping talent on all fronts. Don’t miss out on the fun; buy your tickets early because they’re sure to go quickly.

Amitav Ghosh's appearance at the Festival has been supported by a generous donation to the Alma Lee Legacy Fund by Jab Sidhoo.


This event is sponsored by Simon & Schuster Canada.

 

47

Chinese Puzzle

*Xiaolu Guo
Qiu Xiaolong
*Sheng Xue
Ting-xing Ye

8:00 pm
Waterfront Theatre
$17 + $1.00 facility surcharge

*The programming details of this event have changed since the Festival Program was printed:
We regret that Xiaolu Guo will not be appearing at this event.
We are pleased to announce that Sheng Xue will now be appearing at this event.

The Beijing Olympics have brought unprecedented attention to China from around the world. Through the overwhelming media attention focused on the Olympics, we get a tantalizing glimpse of China as it is. But what of the China that was? The Cultural Revolution, Tiananmen Square and the rise of capitalism have shaken, shattered and shaped China—and the people who lived through those years. Xiaolu Guo, Qiu Xiaolong and Ting-xing Ye all grew up in China and left their homeland over the past 20 years. This evening, they talk about their childhoods, their run-ins with the regime and their views of their homeland from abroad. It’s sure to be a fascinating conversation that will deepen our understanding of one of the world’s most powerful nations.


 

48

An Intimate Evening with Sharon Olds

Sharon Olds

8:00 pm
PTC Studio
$20
This event is sold out.

When American poet Sharon Olds stood on the steps of the library at Columbia University having earned her PhD, she vowed to become a poet, even if it meant giving up everything she had learned. The vow she made freed her to develop her own voice and set her on a path that has won her international acclaim over three decades. Olds has published eight volumes of poetry, her work has appeared in more than 100 anthologies and collections, and it has been translated into seven languages. Yet Olds remains modest about her place in history. “I don’t know what poetry is,” Olds says. Spend an evening with one of America’s greatest living poets.


The Solo Author Series is sponsored by Raincoast Books and supported by the F.K. Morrow Foundation

 

49

Down and Out in Reno

Willy Vlautin in conversation with Nancy Lee
8:00 pm
Tap Room at the Granville Island Brewery
$17

Willy Vlautin is the leader of an alternative country ensemble Richmond Fontaine as well as a novelist. Both his novels and songs mine a seam of American writing that celebrates the broken lives of the dispossessed and the luckless. And, like his writing, his music is mournful, understated and proudly steeped in menthol smoke and bourbon. Often compared to Steinbeck and Carver, Vlautin is in fact an American original. Enjoy a soulful evening of music, words and conversation with Vlautin and Vancouver author, Nancy Lee.

For those 19 years and older


This event is sponsored by HarperCollinsCanada Ltd.