Caroline Adderson is the author of three novels A History of Forgetting, Sitting Practice, The Sky Is Falling, two collections of short stories Bad Imaginings, Pleased To Meet You as well as eight books for young readers. Her work has received numerous prize nominations including the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award, two Commonwealth Writers’ Prizes, the Scotiabank Giller Prize longlist, the Governor General’s Literary Award and the Rogers’ Trust Fiction Prize. Winner of two Ethel Wilson Fiction Prizes and three CBC Literary Awards, Caroline was also the recipient of the 2006 Marian Engel Award for mid-career achievement. She lives in Vancouver with her husband and son.
Pearl Luke is the author of two novels, Madame Zee (2006) and Burning Ground (2000). Burning Ground won the Commonwealth Prize for Best First Novel (Canada/Caribbean region) and was short-listed for the Chapter/Robertson Davies Prize, Georges Bugnet Award for Fiction, and Canadian Booksellers’ Libris award. Madame Zee was long-listed for the 2007 International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award.
Pearl also founded and runs the writing website Be-a-Better-Writer.com and the book discovery website Book Club Buddy
She lives on Salt Spring Island with her partner, poet and novelist Robert Hilles.
Dawn Marie Kresan’s poetry has appeared in a number of literary journals, including The Dalhousie Review, Carousel, Vallum, Lichen, The Windsor Review, Prairie Journal, CV2, The Antigonish Review and Event. Her first full-length poetry collection will be published by Tightrope in 2013. She lives in Kingsville, Ontario, with her husband and their daughter.
Future Featured Readers/Performers
Tuesday, October 29, 2013
Arleen Paré is a Victoria writer and poet. Originally from Montreal, she spent two decades working in Vancouver mental health services. Leaving Now (Caitlin Press, 2012) is a mixed-genre novel and her second book.Paper Trail, her first book (NeWest Press, 2007) was also mixed-genre and won the Victoria Butler Book Prize in 2008. It was also short-listed for the Dorothy Livesay Poetry Prize, BC Book Awards. She has been published in several literary journals and in a number of anthologies. In 2012, she graduated from UVic’s Creative Writing Program with an MFA in poetry.
Andrew Brown was born in Vancouver, British Columbia. He received his bachelor of art's degree in 1977 from U.B.C. and his professional teaching certificate from Simon Fraser University in 1978. He taught high school english and drama for thirty three years in Vanderhoof, Parksville and Nanaimo. He has two daughters, Corrina and Meredith. He lives with his wife Lili in Qualicum Beach and is a frequent reader at WordStorm in Nanaimo and the Qualicum Acoustic Cafe in his home town. He also acts in Echo Productions whenever possible.
Andrew's debut book of poetry, Crow's First Word, was published by Gravity Press in 2008. His second book is expected to be published in the fall of 2013. Andrew Brown enjoys his retirement very much and hopes to continue to be creative and active for many years to come.
Paul Headrick lives in Vancouver, where he was born and raised. His novel That Tune Clutches My Heart
(Gaspereau Press) was shortlisted for the BC Book Prize for Fiction. The Doctrine of Affections (Freehand
Books), a collection of short stories about music, was a finalist for the Alberta Fiction Award.
Jim Friesen was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba, in 1953 and studied Creative Writing at Red River Community College in the mid 1970's. He came to the west coast in 1979 and has worked for over thirty years in health care, specifically in long-term care in Vancouver's down-town east side.
Jim's poetry has been published in The West Coast Review and Minus Tides and he has done a number of readings in Vancouver over the years, often collaborating with musicians. He has created one book of poems, The Paradise Theatre, published by Gravity Press.
Besides writing and publishing his own poetry, Jim is very proud to have worked with Andrew Brown, as both an editor and designer, on Andrew's first book of poetry, Crow's First Word. In recent years Jim's focus has moved primarily to photography as his means of expression. His photos can be seen at Little Eye Studio
"I have always loved poetry, even when I have not always understood it. The poets colored my view of the world in a way I will always be grateful for. Although I have no illusions regarding the importance of my own work, I am proud to feel that I am a part of a fabric of people that stretches across Canada, and around the world, for whom poetry is an important, if not essential, part of life."
November 26, 2013
Madeleine Nattrass is retired from teaching in French Immersion programs in both Alberta and BC and lives on Vancouver Island. Her work has been published in Quills, Tower Poetry, Other Voices, filling station, Freefall Magazine, Women and Environments Magazine, the new quarterly, CV2 , online in Branch Magazine and Leaf Press Monday Poem and in several anthologies including Walk Myself Home, an anthology to end violence against women.
Cornelia Hoogland is a Canadian poet. She is currently a professor at the University of Western Ontario and lives in London, Ontario. However, she attributes her childhood on densely wooded Vancouver Island, B.C., with inspiration for her writing. Hoogland has performed and worked internationally in the areas of drama and poetry. “The land inside Coyote: Reconceptualizing human relationships to place through drama” (In D. Booth & K. Gallagher (Eds.), How Theatre Educates: Convergences & Counterpoints, 2003) marked Hoogland’s research into place-based education.
Woods Wolf Girl (Wolsak and Wynn, 2011) is Hoogland’s 5th book of poetry, and is based on the fairy tale, Red Riding Hood. Crow (Black Moss Press, 2011), released a month after Woods Wolf Girl, is Hoogland’s 6th book. Her newest selection, a chapbook titled Gravelly Bay (Alfred Gustav Press, 2012), is forthcoming. Hoogland’s poetry has been shortlisted for the CBC literary awards; the nominations include selections from her books Cuba Journal as well as her second and third books of poetry You Are Home and Marrying the Animals. Her recent awards include finalist placements for the Stephen Dunn Poetry Award, The Broome Review (USA); the Malahat Review Long Poem Competition; and Descant’s Winston Collins Best Canadian Poem. Her writing in the area of Aboriginal, place-based education was recently featured in the Huffington Post.
Hoogland is the founder and the co-artistic director of Poetry London (www.poetrylondon.ca), an organization that brings prominent writers into lively discussion with London writers and readers. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Hoogland divides her time between London, ON., and Hornby Island, B.C.
Leanne McIntosh was born in Regina, Saskatchewan. She has published two books of poetry: The Sound the Sun Makes and Liminal Space. Her poems have appeared in literary journals, anthologies and a series of chapbooks edited by Patrick Lane. She is a regular participant in local reading events and she volunteers poetry sessions at the Nanaimo Brain Injury Society. She has lived in Nanaimo, British Columbia for 43 years.
January 28, 2014
Daniela Elza’s work has appeared nationally and internationally in over 80 publications. the weight of dew (Mother Tongue Publishing, 2012) is her debut poetry collection. In 2011 she received her doctorate from SFU and self-published the book of it (Ebook and print). Daniela's poetry book milk tooth bane bone was published by Leaf Press in 2013.
In the poetry community Daniela has contributed in the capacities of a contest judge, guest-editor for journals/anthologies, organizer and promoter of events, workshop facilitator, coordinator and host of Twisted Poets Literary Salon etc.. She currently serves on the Board of the Capilano Review and is editor at Cascadia Review.
Here is the link to the page of the new book on Leaf Press website:
Leaf Press: milk tooth bane bone
Mary Ann Moore
Mary Ann Moore’s latest chapbook of poetry is You Are Here (Leaf Press, 2012). Her personal essay, “Who I Am, Here,” is included in Living Artfully: Reflections from the Far West Coast (The Key Publishing House, 2012). One of her poems is included in Poems from Planet Earth (Leaf Press, 2013). Mary Ann’s book of poetry, Fishing for Mermaids, Mining for Light, will be published by Leaf Press in 2014. She leads Writing Life women’s writing circles in Nanaimo and offers a mentoring program called Writing Home: A Whole Life Practice. Web Site
Jan DeGrass writes in Gibsons, British Columbia, where she is Arts and Entertainment columnist for the Coast Reporter newspaper, and contributes a regular arts feature to Coast Life magazine.
She leads a writing critique group and assists other authors with editing their manuscripts (www.edityourwords.ca). She has received a national award for a business article that contributed to Canadian co-operative literature and was a winner for Best Coverage of the Arts by a national newspaper association. She is the author of a corporate history book and a cookbook, Take Potluck! 101 Tasty, Simple Dishes for Your Potluck Party.
Her award-winning article, "Loving in Leningrad", based on a true experience in the Soviet Union, drew on her university background in Russian language and literature and became the genesis of Jazz with Ella.
More about Jazz with Ella can be found on her website: Jan DeGrass
About Jazz with Ella:
While on a study tour of the Soviet Union during the austere Brezhnev years, Jennifer, a Canadian student, is swept off her feet by a handsome Soviet man, Volodya. He is a discontented jazz pianist whose idol is singer Ella Fitzgerald—for him the symbol of everything mysterious and musical that can happen only in the west. Jennifer visits his haunts—and his bedroom—in Leningrad, and learns that he is under surveillance for consorting with foreigners.
Jennifer refuses Volodya's desperate pleas to help him defect, and she leaves for the last leg of her trip, a Volga River cruise. But the romance is not over. Despite interference from her fussy professor, Chopyk, and a fierce tour guide, Natasha, Jennifer decides to risk it all.
"A richly layered, complex story of love and opportunism." –Betty Keller, author, A Thoroughly Wicked Woman and Better the Devil You KnowBR>
"Jazz with Ella by Jan DeGrass is an absorbing tale of intrigue, containing many moments of passionate lovemaking and spine-tingling suspense. –Ben Nuttall-Smith, author, Blood, Feathers & Holy Men.
February 25, 2014
Stella Leventoyannis Harvey
Stella Leventoyannis Harvey was born in Cairo, Egypt and moved to Calgary as a child with her family. In 2001, Stella founded the Whistler Writers Group, also known as the Vicious Circle, which each year produces the Whistler Writers Festival under her direction. Stella is a fiction writer whose short stories have appeared in The Literary Leanings Anthology, The New Orphic Review, Emerge Magazine and The Dalhousie Review. Her non-fiction has appeared in Pique Newsmagazine, The Question and the Globe and Mail. She currently lives with her husband in Whistler, but visits her many relatives in Greece often, indulging her love of Greek food and culture and honing her fluency in the language. Nicolai’s Daughters is her first published novel. Web Page
Murray Reiss was born in Sarnia, Ontario, and lives on Salt Spring Island, BC, with his wife Karen, a ceramic sculptor. Since moving to Salt Spring in 1979 he's been a pizza maker and ice cream scooper, special education teacher and child care worker, and coordinator of the Salt Spring Water Council. For four years in Vancouver he was B.C. coordinator of Tools for Peace, doing solidarity work to support Nicaragua's revolution. He currently works as a freelance editor and environmental writer. His poetry and prose have been published in literary magazines and anthologies in Canada and the United States, including Rocksalt: An Anthology of Contemporary BC Poetry and Poems from Planet Earth, and short-listed for a number of prizes and awards. His chapbook, Distance from the Locus, was published in 2005 by Mothertongue Press. He also performs with singer-songwriter Phil Vernon as the "folken-word" duo Midnight Bridge, with one CD out so far. The Survival Rate of Butterflies in the Wild is his first full-length collection.
Paulo Da Costa
paulo da costa, born in Angola and raised in Portugal, is a writer, editor, and translator living on the West Coast of Canada. paulo’s first book of fiction, The Scent of a Lie, received the 2003 Commonwealth First Book Prize for the Canada-Caribbean region and the W.O. Mitchell City of Calgary Book Prize. His fiction and poetry have been published in literary magazines around the world and have been translated to Italian, Chinese, Spanish, Serbian, Slovenian, German, and Portuguese.
March 25, 2014
WordStorm for this night is totally spoken word, no paper. So get your best spoken word piece ready for the open mic. Everyone is welcome and we challenge you to create a dramatic spoken word piece for the evening.
Missie Peters is an award-wining spoken word performer from Victoria, BC. She is a two-time Victoria Slam Champion, the former slam master, one half of the improvised spoken word duo SpeakEasy and the director of Not Your Grandma’s Poetry. She currently produces the annual Victoria Spoken Word Festival. Her poetry finds the personal in the political and finds the metaphor in the mundane. She is also a huge science fiction geek.
"intelligent and whimsical” – Times Colonist
"has the inherently sassy smarts and sensual irony" – Monday Magazine
Not Your Grandmother's Poetry
Kendall Patrick: In a sea of singer/songwriters Kendall Patrick stands apart with a firm belief in the power of her voice to help others find strength in themselves. This 25 year old Ladysmith-born artist is an accomplished vocalist, writer, guitarist, and pianist who works to touch other people, relate to them and have them identify with her experience. On stage, Kendall brings intimacy and humour to a performance where nothing’s sacred. Audiences call her live performance “fabulous”, “inspiring”, and “captivating”; she regularly packs coffee houses and other intimate venues and her fan base keeps growing.
Kendall has been writing songs since elementary school. As her technique and content has evolved she has met much success which has taken her around North America, weaving through coffee houses, bars, conferences, schools, and music festivals. With daring personal honesty and empowering political commentary, Kendall brings people together.
Career highlights include her first self-booked tour, touring with a favourite artist and spoken-word giant Shane Koyczan, performing at the International Media Literacy Conference in Detroit, and recording her latest album with “Summer of ‘69”’s Pat Steward and Doug Elliot. She is currently recording with Juno-award nominated producer/engineer Rick Salt, who introduced her to Steward and Elliot, and has taken her under his wing to help get her music out there.
She believes whole-heartedly in the power of her music to make a positive impact on the world. Her Operation Empowerment Interactive Youth Assembly combines music, visuals, and beat poetry, which she uses to help teenagers look honestly at their choices around media influence. She has a unique ability to connect with youth on their own level. Her project has caught attention from the Oprah Winfrey Show. Although it didn’t make it on the air, it fuelled her fire to continue the cause.
Sebastien Wen is a poet, playwright and spoken word artist based out of Calgary and Vancouver.
His poetry has been featured in the spoken word DVD Poets Asking For Exile (2011) and magazines such as Cicada (2012), The Claremont Review (2012) and Ascent Aspirations (coming 2013). Excerpts from his play The Backseat have been featured in Alberta Theatre Projects' Fresh Prints (2011).
He has featured as a performer in the Calgary Spoken Word Festival (2012) and The People's Poetry Festival (2012). Sebastien is studying English, History and Philosophy in his first year at the University of British Columbia. He strives to do things to your brain with his tongue.
April 29, 2014 AGM
Jim W. Smith
Jim Smith is the author of fifteen books and chapbooks published between 1979 and 2012, including One Hundred Most Frightening Things (blewointmentpress, 1985), Convincing Americans (Proper Tales Press, 1986), The Schwarzenegger Poems (Surrealist Poets Gardening Association, 1988), Translating Sleep (Wolsak & Wynn, 1989), Leonel/Roque (Coteau Books, 1998), Back Off, Assassin! New and Selected Poems (Mansfield Press, 2009) and his new collection, Happy Birthday, Nicanor Parra, released by Mansfield Press in November 2012.
Jim’s Back Off, Assassin: New and Selected Poems was long-listed (leaked list) for the 2010 Governor General’s Award for Poetry. The book also made the Indigo/Chapters first-ever Top Ten Poetry Books for National Poetry Week in April, 2010. It garnered rave reviews in Fiddlehead, ARC, Spencer Gordon’s Dangerous Literature and a number of other blogs.
Happy Birthday, Nicanor Parra, his new collection, is his most extreme book yet, both poetically and politically. The 98-year-old much-Nobel-nominated Chilean anti-poet Nicanor Parra told Jim that “translation is treason” during their meeting at Parra’s home in Las Cruces, Chile last February.
In 2013-2014, Emilia Nielsen is a Teaching Fellow at Quest University in Squamish, BC.
She holds a BFA from the University of Victoria, a MA from the University of New Brunswick and a PhD from the University of British Columbia. During her studies, she was the recipient of several British Columbia Arts Council Senior Scholarships and two Canada Graduate Scholarships from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada for Masters and Doctoral research and writing. Her poetry has appeared in literary journals across Canada including The Antigonish Review, Contemporary Verse 2, Event, Descant, The Fiddlehead, Grain, Prairie Fire, Room Magazine, and was nominated for a Pushcart Prize in Poetry by Prism International. Surge Narrows, published by Leaf Press in 2013, is her debut collection of poetry.
May 27, 2014
Derek Hanebury is a poet who also writes fiction and creative non-fiction. His first book of poetry Nocturnal Tonglen was released in 2006. His poems and stories have been published in many magazines and broadcasted on CBC radio; and his first novel, Ginger Goodwin: Beyond the Forbidden Plateau, went to a second printing. He has a Master’s Degree in Creative Writing from UBC and has been instructing at North Island College in Port Alberni since 1988 where he currently teaches English and creative writing.
John Beaton is a retired actuary who was raised in the Highlands of Scotland. He lives on an acreage in Qualicum Beach on Vancouver Island, where he and his wife have raised five children.
John was a moderator of The Deep End poetry workshop at Able Muse Press’s Eratosphere website for almost four years. His poetry and prose have been widely published in literary and non-literary newspapers, journals, and websites and he performs regularly at a wide range of spoken word events.
September 30 2014
Naomi Beth Wakan
October 28, 2014
November 25, 2014
Performers of the Past
Reservations can be made via email to WordStorm! So far the
trend has been for each WordStorm to almost reach capacity by
reservations alone. If you can't reserve, come early and take
your chances at the door. Reserved seating will take place before
6:30. Walk-in seats will be available after 6:30. Music starts
at 6:30 and the program begins at 7:00.
WordStorm is an on-going reading series that focuses on all
types of the spoken word: poetry, short fiction, storytelling,
improv, music, song. There are two components of WordStorm -
a prearranged reading series, and an excitingly competitive
spoken word competition. (Reserve a ticket and ask to be an
open mike reader or sign up at the door.) The readings will
always be a mix of genres, and the sign-up for WordStorm can
be either poetry and prose. The key elements will be
quality writing and entertainment. Material read must be the
reader's own work, and be read without props or instruments.
Three judges will be chosen from the audience for each WordStorm,
and audience participation is encouraged. The sign-up for WordStorm
Open Mike can be in advance, by email, and also between 6:30
and 7:00 at the door. Admission is $5.00 at the door.
The money collected will go entirely to prize winners and towards
mimimal operating costs. Demeter's Coffee Vault has a capacity of
about 50 people, so don't be disappointed, reserve ahead
by email, or take your chances at the door. Come out to
just listen and be entertained, or sign up to be part of the
entertainment. Everyone is welcome!
From its beginning WordStorm has played to packed houses with
a full slate of readers-some coming from as far away as Seattle,
Vancouver, Victoria, Courtenay, Comox, Bowen Island, Saltspring
Island, Qualicum Beach, Duncan, Ladysmith, Prince Rupert (via
Shawnigan Lake), Protection Island, Gabriola Island, Port
Alberni, Ucluelet, Lasqueti Island, Saskatoon, Errington, Yellow Point, Sooke, P.E.I., Penticton, The Yukon,
and Mahone Bay, Nova Scotia.
Come on out to WordStorm
and set the writing/performing world of Vancouver Island on
Everyone is welcome
to get involved and participate.
Sheri-d Performance Photos
(Guidelines: You have three minutes to read one piece. It is all in good fun,
so bring out your new or old stuff and try it out on our audience. You must sign-up before
the program begins or you will not be on the sheet.)
for first, second and third-place winners will be awarded based
quality of content
inspiration and/or entertainment
Our esteemed panel of judges will be chosen at
random from the audience.
We are always looking for local talent
to read/perform as lightning readers for 5 minutes maximum, unless are featuring a recent publication of a book.
Ascent Aspirations Magazine