Symposium brings writers to UVic

Thirty-six poets, novelists, short story writers and professors gather for The Malahat Review’s WordsThaw this week

Matt Rader will be among the writers taking part in WordsThaw this week at the University of Victoria.

Thirty-six poets, novelists, short story writers and professors gather for The Malahat Review’s WordsThaw this week. They hail from here or as far afield as the Lower Mainland.

On Friday, Words on Ice guests will hear readings from celebrated writers including Yvonne Blomer (Victoria’s poet laureate), Karen Enns, Peter Midgley, Kevin Kerr, Fiona Tinwei Lam, Matt Rader, Arleen Paré (recent GG Poetry winner) and D.W. Wilson. Genres include poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction and drama. There will be an after party that night at Hillside Coffee & Tea featuring more readings.

During the day Saturday WordsThaw offers four panel discussions.

Natural Divide or Shape-Shifting Chic: Negotiating Creative Nonfiction’s Extremes includes panelists Fiona Tinwei Lam, Mark Leiren-Young and Jane Silcott with moderator Lynne Van Luven, a UVic writing professor.

Young Adult Fiction: All Grown Up? features panelists Sarah Harvey, Robin Stevenson and Kirsten Andersen with moderator Christine Walde, UVic collections librarian.

Vanity or in the Vanguard: Self-Publishing’s Makeover will have panelists Mary Hughes, Patrick O’Connor, Sid Tafler with moderator David Leach, UVic writing department chair.

Has It Got Better: Minority Voices or Major Talents includes panelists Hanna Leavitt, Janet Rogers (former Victoria poet laureate) and Daniel Zomparelli under moderator Aaron Devor, the former dean of UVic grad studies.

During the lunch hour on Saturday, pass holders can sign up for a Brief Encounters blue pencil session to get useful comments on a writing sample.

Sunday’s Master Class with acclaimed poet Phil Hall is sold out.

A WordsThaw pass costs $35 in advance ($20 for students), or $50 ($25 students) at the door. Individual panel tickets will be available this year at the door for $18 (or $12 students). Visit for tickets and places of each event.



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