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GG winner Allan Casey on Saskatchewan’s vibrant literary scene: “We’re serious about football and books”

This year’s Governor General’s Literary Awards was a prize bonanza for Saskatchewan’s writing and publishing community, with the fiction and non-fiction prizes going to a pair of prairie authors, Dianne Warren and Allan Casey. Meanwhile, Regina’s Coteau Books took the prize for children’s literature (text) for Wendy Phillips’ Fishtailing.

The fact that Saskatchewan has a vibrant literary scene should come as no surprise to readers outside the province. As Casey told Q&Q earlier today, Saskatchewan residents are serious about two things: football and books. From Q&Q‘s coverage of the 2010 GG awards:

People take books and literature and the arts very seriously out in my part of the prairie, and they always have: we’re serious about football and books, Casey says. For the size of the population and its removal from the bright lights of the centre of things, it is kind of remarkable how many writers there are out there.

Warren also points to the province’s tight-knit, vibrant writing community. I would say that, in general, writers in Saskatchewan are very supportive of one another, and we have strong organizations to back that up, with publishers like Coteau and Thistledown Press as well as a strong writers’ guild.