Duncan-based author Jennifer Manuel took home the Ethel Wilson Fiction Prize for her first novel, The Heaviness of Things that Float, at the 33rd Annual BC Book Prizes. She will be part of an online reading session on Oct. 22, 2020, featuring Cowichan Valley writers. (Submitted photo)

Duncan-based author Jennifer Manuel took home the Ethel Wilson Fiction Prize for her first novel, The Heaviness of Things that Float, at the 33rd Annual BC Book Prizes. She will be part of an online reading session on Oct. 22, 2020, featuring Cowichan Valley writers. (Submitted photo)

Cowichan Valley authors to be featured in online readings Oct. 22

The Cowichan Valley Writers Spotlight will feature readings by eight area writers

A group of Cowichan Valley writers will be featured in an online Zoom reading event presented by the Federation of British Columbia Writers this Thursday, Oct. 22 at 2 p.m.

“We’re very excited about this event. There are great things going on in the Cowichan Valley literary scene, with some really high-calibre writing. Showcasing the work of these writers by their own readings is an event everyone will be able to enjoy via Zoom teleconferencing,” said Jacqueline Carmichael, president of the Federation of British Columbia Writers.

The FBCW has more than 850 members around the province.

“The event is open to the public, and people can sign up at bcwriters.ca/events-for-writers, and then a link to the Zoom event will be emailed to them,” Carmichael said.

The Cowichan Valley Writers Spotlight will feature readings by eight area writers: Jennifer Manuel, Al Cool, Diane Gallagher, Allan Waddy, Mary Nelson, Bernice Ramdin-Firth, Tom Masters and Suzanne Anderson.

Host Suzanne Anderson is a publishing consultant and the author of three books. She also presents workshops on writing and publishing.

Alfred Cool has written six novels and a T.V. pilot about life on the B.C. coast. Al writes compelling and uniquely Canadian stories about the raw and bold characters living where Canada’s mountains meet Earth’s most incredible ocean.

Liz Maxwell Forbes has lived for an extremely long time, therefore is well qualified to write memoir: Growing up Weird- A Memoir of an Oak Bay Childhood, and River Tales- Stories from My Cowichan Years as well as her blog, Island Crone Writer. Some of her best writing ideas have come when she is bathing outdoors in her claw foot tub.

Born and raised in Vancouver, Diane Gallagher has published numerous articles, poems, and blog posts as well as her novels, The Bastard of Saint Genevra, Greenwich List, her travelogue/cookbook, Mancia di Sanu: A Canadian Expat’s Take on Sicilian Life and Cuisine, and her book of poetry, Gratitude & Betrayal | Betrayal & Gratitude. She currently divides her time between Vancouver Island and Sicily.

Jennifer Manuel’s debut novel, The Heaviness of Things That Float, won the 2017 Ethel Wilson Prize and was optioned for a television series. She has been a Western Magazine Finalist and CBC named her a Writer to Watch. She is the author of two children’s novels, Dressed to Play and Head to Head. Her first YA novel, Open Secrets, is coming out in February 2021.

Tom Masters has worked in journalism, television, government and the private sector, all of which led him to Chemainus where he writes and lives with his wife Sharon. His novel A Hard Place, a love story wrapped in life’s lessons, is available on Amazon.

Mary Nelson lives in Duncan, and used to write on the ferry, in Banff, at Yellow Point Lodge, but now writes at home. She’s working on a poetic memoir, and has published a novel for young readers, Catla and Vikings, and a textbook used in Social Studies in Ontario. Her poetry has appeared in anthologies, and a few journals.

Bernice Ramsdin-Firth is an artist and she also writes stories for children and young adults, the fun stuff. The Other Side of Magic series (fantasy, 8-12) were her first four books, then Sammy Snail and Other Silly Stories, The Elephants’ Tale (3-8) and Once Upon a Future—Earth, (young adult science fiction). She is working on another book in that series. “Writing is hard work but the rewards are great and so is the opportunity to spark my imagination. Hope you enjoy the reading from Once Upon a Future—Earth,” she said.

Raised in the Cowichan Valley, retired from the Canadian Navy, Allan Waddy operated a private investigations company for 26 years and has been writing and selling true-life short stories since 1999. Bestselling author: Buckshot & Johnnycakes (2018) and Guilty Knowledge coming soon.

For more information about the Federation of BC Writers, email hello@bcwriters.ca

For additional information about this event, email president@bcwriters.ca.

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