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Inaugural Canadian Writers’ Summit event highlights


Toronto’s Harbourfront Centre is hosting the first-ever Canadian Writers’ Summit from June 15–19, organized by a collection of home-grown writing groups that includes the Writers’ Union of Canada, the Canadian Authors Association, and the League of Canadian Poets. Programming – both public and members-only events – on topics ranging from the business of writing, craft, translation, writers’ rights, and more is administered in part by Canadian Creative Writers and Writing Programs and each of the organizing groups.

Here are some highlights: (Please note, though some events are ticketed or free events open to the public, some are members-only or open only to holders of a conference pass for that day.)

June 15

  • Keynote speech by Lawrence Hill. Includes presentation of the Writers’ Union’s Freedom to Read Award to Mohamed Fahmy.
    Reception: 7 p.m., event: 8 p.m. at the Fleck Dance Theatre
  • NRC and CAA Board of Directors meetings

June 16

  • Book Summit 2016 – Back to the Book: The [New] Business of Publishing and Writing. Workshops and panels on marketing, retail, diversity, writer/reader/publisher relationship, and more.
    8 a.m. at Harbourfront Centre Main Building
  • Lakeside Play Readings In partnership with Coach House Books, Playwrights Canada Press, Playwrights Guild of Canada, and more present eight dramatic readings
    7:30 p.m., Lakeside Terrace

June 17

  • What You Know: The Pleasure and Pain of Research. Featuring authors Nino Ricci, Marina Endicott, and Greg Hollingshead, moderated by Alissa York.
    4 p.m. at the PP South Patio
  • Canada Council for the Arts director and CEO Simon Brault on writing grants
    9:30 a.m. at Harbourfront Centre Theatre
  • Re-Wilding: How Can We Use Stories to Re-Imagine Our Relationship to Nature? With Kathryn Kuitenbrouwer, Alissa York, Kyo Maclear, and more.
    10 a.m., Market Tent E
  • A panel of international experts on libraries and Public Lending Right systems.
    10:30 a.m., Harbourfront Centre Theatre
  • Changing Business, Changing Contacts: The Global Fair Contract Initiative for Authors Featuring a group of experts including Writers’ Union executive director John Degen and Authors Guild executive director Mary Rasenberger.
    2 p.m., Harbourfront Centre Theatre
  • To MFA or not to MFA Featuring professionals in discussion on what the degree means and represents today
    2 p.m., Market Tent B
  • Big Issues in YA Writing With Kevin Craig, Jennifer Overton, and Jenna Green
    2 p.m., PP South Patio
  • Indigenous Writers Panel With Lee Maracle, Tracey Lindberg, and Kenneth Williams, moderated by Waubgeshig Rice.
    3 p.m., Studio Theatre
  • Robert J. Sawyer on diversifying your income.
    3 p.m., Architecture Gallery
  • Making Our Own Solutions: The Writer as Cultural Agent. With Jael Richardson, Vivek Shraya, and more.
    4 p.m., Harbourfront Centre Theatre
  • What You Know: The Pleasure and Pain of Research. Featuring authors Nino Ricci, Marina Endicott, and Greg Hollingshead, moderated by Alissa York.
    4 p.m., PP South Patio
  • The Margaret Laurence Lecture Series presents Jean Little.
    8 p.m., Harbourfront Centre Theatre

June 18

  • CAA Literary Awards Luncheon
    12 noon, Lakeside Terrace
  • The League of Canadian Poets Awards Luncheon and 50th Anniversary Celebration
    12:30 p.m., Brigantine Room
  • Keynote speech by Kenneth Oppel
    1 p.m., Studio Theatre
  • Women Writers in Action
    1 p.m., Miss Lou’s Room
  • Performing Identity: The Politics of Culture With Carmen Aguirre, Anita Majumbar, Andrea Thompson, and Irfan Ali
    2 p.m., Architecture Gallery
  • Calling Our Queer Bodies Home With Farzana Doctor, Michael V. Smith, Vivek Shraya, and Nicola Harwood
    2 p.m., Market Tent B
  • Fuck tha Genre Police On jumping genres with Priscila Uppal, Daniel Scott Tysdal, Andrew Westoll, and Sharanpai Ruprai
    2 p.m., Boulevard Tent
  • Writing Reconciliation Moderated by Danielle Mercalfe-Chenail
    2 p.m., Exhibition Common Tent
  • Uncovering Book Design With David Gee and C.S. Richardson
    3 p.m., Studio Theatre
  • Keynote speech by Heather O’Neill
    3 p.m., Lakeside Terrace
  • Dayne Ogilvie Prize celebration
    5 p.m., Brigantine Room

June 19

  • Various group meetings.
  • LCP New Members Reading
    12 noon, Studio Theatre