Member Newsletter with Karen Emilson

Congratuations to the winners!

Winnipeg Free Press/Writers’ Collective
Short Fiction and Marie Barton Postcard Contests
First Place -  She Was Waterton by Corina Liepert
Second PlaceThe Race by Adriano Magnifico
Third PlaceFireside Ramblings by Alex Kapkey

First PlaceChristmas by Peter Heinrichs
Second PlaceMontague Boy by Yeseul Kim
Third PlaceLet the Rain Fall by Taylor Stoesz
Hon. MentionThe Killer Inside Me by Katelyn Cabral

First Place -  The Battle in the Sky by Derek Fisk
Second PlaceLearning to Overcome by Bryanne Dewitt
Third PlaceJenny’s Story by Kirsten Fleury
Hon. MentionGlass Boxes by Jorja Ferguson

First PlaceNew York Room by Debbie Strange
Second PlaceHow’s Uncle Arthur? by Ada Letinsky
Third PlaceThe Prince and the Patsy by Patricia Winton

Special thanks to judges
Bronwyn Jerrett-Enns and Kyla Neufeld
David Jón Fuller and David Robertson
Kate Vermette and Lindsey Childs.

Everyone is invited to attend the


Thursday June 9th, 2011
Carol Shields Auditorium
Winnipeg Millennium Library
7:00 p.m.
Come out and  hear the winning entries, meet the judges and enjoy the refreshments. It promises to be an fun evening for all who are interested in celebrating new writing.

For  more information or to RSVP, please email: or call 


The Makings of an Action Hero
Noon – 1:00 p.m.
Please join David Annandale for a noon-hour talk, “The Makings of An Action Hero” on Thursday, June 23 at the Millennium Library in the Carol Shields Auditorium. David will talk about what makes and drives an action hero. will discuss the different types of heroes (from black knight to boy scout), and techniques that keep a series like Superman and James Bond popular. Topics will include character and plot development, and problems encountered to satisfy fans and readers. David will also read from the latest title in his Jen Blaylock action series, The Valedictorians.

Following that, the Writers’ Collective will partner with Turnstone Press in  hosting a Lecture / Workshop led by David, who is a professor of Literature and Film at the University of Manitoba.

Creating Strong Characters
A Fiction Workshop with David Annandale
Thursday June 23, 2011
1:30 – 4:00 p.m
Buchwald Room, Millennium Library
Cost: $15 WC members, $30 non-members.
Contact  or call 786-9468 to register.

David will discuss the importance of creating strong characters in this lecture / workshop and will expand upon his earlier talk. Feel free to bring along a sample of your work, but it is not a requirement. Please pre-register so that we know how many participants to expect.

How to Write an Artist’s BIO
Featuring W-i-R Keith Cadieux
Tuesday June 14, 2011
7:00 – 9:00  p.m. at Aqua Books
Cost: $15.00

Keith Cadieux is a local author who used to have a really hard time coming up with things to put in his author bio. Bios may seem small and not very complicated but most artists struggle with the few words they are allowed in these promotional bits. Come find out what info should be included and what makes for a memorable and engaging bio. Open to writers, musicians, artists and all others interested.

Keith Cadieux lives and writes in Winnipeg, where he grew up. His first published work was the novella Gaze which was released by Quattro Books in 2010. He holds a Master’s degree in Creative Writing from the University of Manitoba where he also received the Robert Kroetsch Creative MA Thesis Prize. Keith teaches English at the University of Winnipeg and will be working on a new collection of short stories while serving as Aqua Books’ Writer in Residence from May to August, 2011.


The Manitoba Writers’ Guild presents
2011 Sheldon Oberman Mentorship Program Reading
Thursday June 9, 2011
7:00 p.m. Aqua Books
Cost: FREE
Writers Debbie Calverley, Tara Lee Baxter, Annie Deeley, Jack Frey, John Herbert Cunningham, and Reshal Stein.

Join the participants of the 2011 Sheldon Oberman Mentorship Program in a final wrap-up reading. Mentor and apprentice pairs have been working together on apprentices’ projects since January. Come celebrate their successes in this annual culminating event of the Program, which will feature readings by apprentices introduced by their mentors.

This year’s program pairings are: Jonathan Ball mentoring Debbie Calverley; Anita Daher mentoring Tara Lee Baxter; Sarah Klassen mentoring Annie Deeley; Chandra Mayor mentoring Jack Frey; Maurice Mierau mentoring John Herbert Cunningham; and Duncan Thornton mentoring Reshal Stein.

Fundraising Event
Saturday June 11, 2011
CanWest Global Performing Arts Centre (MTYP) at the Forks
Tickets are $35, $30 for THIN AIR Club Card Holders
(Cards are now available at McNally Robinson Booksellers
and through the festival)
We’re excited to invite you to an evening with the internationally celebrated Peter Robinson, crime writer extraordinaire. Chief Inspector Banks has wound his way through nineteen books now, and readers around the world have connected with his wit, his acuity, and his all-too-real collection of foibles. Mark your calendars so you don’t miss this event!

For more information go to THIN AIR or call 927-7232.


Midnight Sweatlodge Launch
Author Waubgeshig Rice, with Rosanna Deerchild and Duncan Mercredi
Wednesday June 15, 2011
7:00 p.m. at Aqua Books
Midnight Sweatlodge tells the tale of family members, friends and strangers who gather together to partake in this ancient healing ceremony. Each person seeks traditional wisdom and insight to overcome pain and hardship, and the characters give us glimpses into their lives that are both tearful and true. Rice captures the raw emotion and unique challenges of modern Aboriginal life. It’s a hard-hitting and genuine look at the struggles First Nations people face.

Waubgeshig Rice is a broadcast journalist and writer who lives in Ottawa. He grew up in Wasauksing, an Anishinaabe community on the shores of Georgian Bay. His articles, essays and columns have been published in national newspapers and magazines, and as a television journalist he has filed reports from across Canada. Midnight Sweatlodge is his first published work of fiction.

Rosanna Deerchild is Cree from South Indian Lake, Manitoba. Her poetry has appeared in a number of literary magazines including Prairie Fire and CV2. She is the co-founder and remains a member of the Aboriginal Writers Collective, established in 1999. Rosanna currently works a broadcaster with the CBC. This is a small northern town, Deerchild’s long-awaited full-length collection of poems, won the 2009 Aqua Books Lansdowne Prize for Poetry.

Duncan Mercredi is a Cree/Metis writer/storyteller, originally from Misipawistik (Grand Rapids, MB). In addition to his four books of poetry, he has had his work featured in three anthologies of Native writings and in other periodicals such as Prairie Fire and CV2. He is a winner of the Ross Charles Award, and is a long-time member of Manitoba’s Aboriginal Writers Collective. He also hosts Friday Midnight Blues on NCI radio.

Book Launch & Gallery Opening
Monday June 13, 2011
7:30 p.m.
McNally Robinson Booksellers Small Works Gallery
in the Prairie Ink Restaurant

Author Robert Sweeney will give an artist’s talk, the book, Portraits of Winnipeg: The River City in Pen and Ink will be launched that evening and the gallery will show limited edition quality prints of Sweeney’s fine work. With the book’s images in full colour behind him, he will discuss the art behind the architecture, and what it is about the various corners of Winnipeg that attracted his artist’s eye.


Win the Geist Erasure Trophy
Write poetry with your eraser!

Deadline: July 1, 2011
How it works:
  1. Copy the passage from Susanna Moodie’s “Roughing It in the Bush,” into your word processor. This is your Erasure Text.
  2. Erase! The leftover words and letters will form your poem. (Do this any way you like.) TO GET THE TEXT, CLICK HERE
  3. The only rule is do not change the order of words or letters. You can combine left over words and letters how ever you see fit, just as long as they appear in the same order as in the original text.
  4. Shape the text however you like. Or, leave it as is. Add punctuation and capital ization if the spirit moves you.
  5. Print your entry and send it to us. There is no word limit.
For a great exam ple of an erasure poem, see “Readme Doc” by Gregory Betts, pub lished in Geist 77.
First Prize: Geist Erasure Trophy and $500
Second Prize: $150
Third Prize: $100
Honourable Mentions: Swell Geist gifts
All winning entries will be published in Geist
and at
More than one prize per category may be awarded.
Snake Nation Press: Violet Reed Haas Prize for Poetry
Postmark Deadline: August 31
Now in its twenty-first year, Snake Nation Press announces the 2011 Violet Reed Haas Prize for Poetry
$1,000 prize and publication
$25 entry fee must accompany the manuscript
50-75 page manuscript
(Note: previously published poems eligible)
For more info go to: WEBSITE
Please mail your entry and fee to:
Snake Nation Press, Attn: Poetry Contest
2920 North Oak Street, Valdosta, GA 31602.
Snake Nation Press: Serena McDonald Kennedy Award
Postmark Deadline: August 31
Submit a novella of up to 50,000 words or a manuscript of short stories up to 200 pages long.
Fiction and nonfiction accepted. Any well-written manuscript on any topic will be considered. Previously published works may be entered.
An entry fee of $25 must accompany the submission. Winner receives $1,000 award and publication.
For more info go to: WEBSITE
LAKE’S Special Issue on Indigenous Peoples, Health, and Place
Deadline extended: June 15, 2011
Submissions of original unpublished fiction, poetry, essays, interviews, and visual arts related to Indigenous peoples’ health as connected to place are now being solicited for LAKE’s Special Issue on Indigenous Peoples, Health, and Place.

The purpose of this issue is to explore, through creative expression, Indigenous peoples’ health as connected to place. Health in this context is understood in the broadest of ways ‐ a holistic, dynamic, and multi‐dimensional state of well‐being at both individual and community levels. Specifically, we are seeking expressions in various media by Indigenous artists and writers from across Canada who are concerned with health and well‐being through the generations, from birth to passing, as it is related to connection with place and the environment.

Selected work will appear either in the journal’s print or online format, or both, in Issue #7 in the fall of 2011.  For more information check the WEBSITE

2011 Anderbo Creative Nonfiction Prize
Postmark Deadline: June 15, 2011
For an unpublished up-to-1500-word Creative Nonfiction Piece. Winner receives: $500 cash and publication Judged by Elizabeth Wurtzel

Limit one entry per writer. Writer must not have been previously published on Reading fee is $10. For more info go to the WEBSITE

Great Questions of Canada Essay Competition
for students 17-25 yrs of age
Deadline: June 30, 2011
Join twelve of Canada’s leading commentators whose ideas and debates surrounding fundamental Canadian issues culminated in the 1999 publication Great Questions of Canada.
Enter the Historica-Dominion Institute’s GREAT QUESTIONS OF CANADA ESSAY COMPETITION!  Participants must be a Canadian high school, college or undergraduate university student 17-25 years of age.
For more information go to: WEBSITE
Association of Italian Canadian Writers
2011 Flash Fiction Contest
Deadline:  September 30, 2011
Theme: “I’m just a stranger here myself.”
Finding one’s bearings in a strange time, place or condition.
Maximum length:  500 words

Prizes: 1st prize  – $500
2nd prize: $250

Eligibility: Contest open internationally to writers of any cultural affiliation. Entries accepted in English, French, and Italian. Multiple entries welcome.  Unpublished work only – no simultaneous submissions. Entry Fee: $20 Canadian for each entry.  For more information go to: WEBSITE
Prairie Fire Press &
McNally Robinson Booksellers
2011 Writing Contests
Postmark Deadline: November 30, 2011

Bliss Carman Poetry Award – Judge: Syliva Legris
Short Fiction – Judge: Marilyn Bowering
Creative Non-Fiction – Judge: Lawrence Scanlan
1st prize in each category $1,250
2nd prize $500
3rd prize $250
For full contest rules go to WEBSITE,
or phone 
E-mail: .

The Antigonish Review Great Blue Heron Poetry Contest
Postmark Deadline: June 30, 2011
Previously published works, works accepted for publication or simultaneous submissions are ineligible.
No electronic submissions, please. Poetry must be single-spaced.
Please include a separate cover sheet containing your identifying information as well as the titles of all entries.
For more details, go to: WEBSITE


Symposium on Manitoba Writing
In celebration of the 30th Anniversary of the Manitoba Writers’ Guild (MWG), you are invited to take part in a Symposium on Manitoba Writing in spring 2012. A welcome will be extended to everyone – including but not limited to writers, critics, teachers, readers, historians, booksellers, scholars, journalists, students, and creative artists in other genres.
In addition to the presentation of papers described below, there will be readings, social events, celebrations, discussion panels, and invited speakers on wide-ranging topics. The conference will appeal to a variety of people, and we ask that respondents keep that in mind when preparing proposals. Proposals on all aspects of Manitoba writing are sought. The following list is meant to be suggestive only. Topics or methods of your own devising are warmly welcomed.
  • Explorations of genre, period, gender, ethnicity, region, mode, style
  • Histories of taste, inter-arts collaboration, non-English writing
  • Investigations of memoirs, theatre, romances, letters, fiction, radio and television
  • productions, journalism, poetry, science fiction, belles lettres, literary criticism
  • Examinations of the role of teachers, readers, religious organizations, booksellers,
  • librarians, writers’ organizations, digital technology and writing
  • Analyses of constituencies, cultural centralization, national involvements, relationships with other literary groups and institutions
Please submit proposals (approximately 250-500 words plus a one-paragraph bio/bibliography) by e-mail or regular mail to the Symposium Organizing Committee, Manitoba Writers’ Guild, 218-100 Arthur Street, Winnipeg MB R3B 1H3. No e-mail attachments, please.
Decisions about the proposals will be communicated by January 31, 2012. Please note that the proceedings may be recorded; more information will be forthcoming. The finished papers should be 15-20 minutes in length.
For more information about the Symposium, contact.
Organizing Committee: Dennis Cooley (chair), Jonathan Ball, Neil Besner, Gloe Cormie, Victor Enns,
Jan Horner, Reinhold Kramer, Maeengan Linklater, Chris Rutkowski, Sue Sorensen, Armin Wiebe.


The Malahat Review

Canada’s premier literary magazine, invites entries for its Creative Nonfiction Prize
One award of $1,000 CAD is given.
Deadline: August 1, 2011

  • The entry must be between 2,000 and 3,000 words. Please indicate word count on the first page. Please double space your work.
  • No restrictions as to subject matter or approach apply. For example, the entry may be personal essay, memoir, cultural criticism, nature writing, or literary journalism.
  • Entry fee required:
  • $35 CAD for Canadian entries
  • Entrants receive a one-year subscription to The Malahat Review for themselves or a friend.
  • Entries previously published, accepted, or submitted for publication elsewhere are not eligible.
  • Entrants’ anonymity is preserved throughout the judging. Contact information (including an email address) should not appear on the submission, but along with the title on an enclosed separate page.
  • No submissions will be accepted by email.
  • The winner and finalists will be notified via email.
  • Entrants will not be notified about the judges’ decisions even if an SASE is enclosed for this purpose.
  • The winner and finalists will be announced on The Malahat web site and facebook page, with the publication of the winning entry in The Malahat Review’s Winter 2011 issue.
  • The winner will be interviewed. The interview will appear on our website and in Malahat lite, the magazine’s monthly e-newsletter, in December 2011.
  • No entries will be returned, even if accompanied by an SASE.

Send entries and enquiries to: The Malahat Review
University of Victoria P.O. Box 1700
Stn CSC Victoria, B.C. V8W 2Y2
Email:  Telephone: 
phati’tude Literary Magazine’s
Deadline:  June 27, 2011

We’re looking for poetry, short stories and essays that take a look at the 1960s through the lens of today’s art, culture and politics.

We want writers to share their stories from the 1960s or how they equate to contemporary experiences. We seek essays that explore connections between then and now, such as pop culture, literature, politics and social justice. We’re also interested in dynamic poetry that reflects those values as well as position papers and book reviews.

For more information, check out our Submission Guidelines at:WEBSITE and submit to 

Slash Books / Queer Magic anthology
Deadline: June 25, 2011

Slash Books is looking for short stories (500 – 20K words) that explore gay, lesbian, or alternative lifestyle romance.

Be creative!  Sword and Sorcery. Supernatural creatures. Magic. Sexy and sensuous, the characters in “Queer Magic” live in worlds where the supernatural is sometimes hidden, sometimes well known, but always real. Each story in this anthology includes aspects of magic or the supernatural, from time travel to exotic realms.

More details are available at: WEBSITE

Guernica Editions Poet to Poet Anthology
Deadline: June 30, 2011
Guernica Editions is seeking submissions for an anthology of poems devoted to poets.

The anthology will comprise poems by Canadian poets for (about, or inspired by) other poets (not necessarily Canadian), accompanied by short prose pieces that tell the back story behind the poems. We’re looking for poems of any genre of up to 60 lines, together with back stories of up to 250 words.

Send 1 to 3 poems, each with an accompanying back story,  either as a Word Doc email attachment to  with “Poet to Poet Anthology” typed in the subject line, or by post to:

Guernica Editions
489 Strathmore Blvd., Toronto, ON M4C 1N8.
Please write “Poet to Poet Anthology” on the envelope.
Email submissions are preferred.
Details can be found at: WEBSITE


Winnipeg Public Library

Application deadline: June 15, 2011

Winnipeg Public Library is seeking applications for the 2011 – 2012 edition of its Writer-in-Residence program. As a result of the support of the Public Library Services Branch of Manitoba Culture, Heritage, Tourism and Sport, the Writer-in-Residence program will be offered province-wide for the fourth year in a row.

From an office at Winnipeg’s Millennium Library, the Writer-in-Residence will work with emerging Manitoba writers by email and phone as well as through individual consultations, group workshops and programs within Winnipeg.

The residency will begin October 1, 2011 and run for seven months, subject to funding. The Writer-in-Residence will spend a minimum of 40% of the time (14.5 hours per week) on public consultation work and 60% (20.5 hours per week) on his/her own writing. Some travel within the province may be required.

Criteria: The successful applicant must have had at least two books published professionally as well as previous experience in teaching, writing, mentoring or as a manuscript evaluator or editor.

Salary: $3,570.00 per month

Your letter of application must include the following:
• History of literary publications in poetry, drama, fiction or non-fiction
• Statement of personal mentoring philosophy
• Experience in conducting writing courses, workshops, editing, etc.
• Description of the personal writing project that would be worked on during the residency

Apply to: Writer-in-Residence Selection Committee
c/o Readers Services
Millennium Library, 251 Donald Street
Winnipeg, MB  R3C 3P5.

Note: Previous applicants and former Writers-in-Residence may submit an application for consideration.
For more information on the Writer-in-Residence program, please call Danielle Pilon at 986-2802.

The Writer-in-Residence program is co-sponsored by the Winnipeg Public Library Board, the Friends of the Winnipeg Public Library, the Manitoba Writers’ Guild, and the Manitoba Government.


Annual Catskills Writers Retreat
with Susie Moloney and Vern Thiessen

New York: Zane Grey wrote and lived there. H. P. Lovecraft wrote about it. So did Jean Craighead George and graphic novelist Art Spiegelman. Hunter S. Thompson started his career there. Dirty Dancing takes place there, an homage to the area’s grand days as part of the famed “Borscht Belt,” where New York’s well-to-do spent their summers. It’s the Catskill Mountains, now home to the annual Catskill Mountains Writers Retreat.

Nestled in the Hudson valley, eight writers have the opportunity to Rest. Write. Reconnect. With nature, each other and of course, the work.

“The internet connection is spotty, town is a good half hour walk away, cell service is unreliable, so the retreat is the perfect place to really focus on your work.. There’s not much to distract you in the Catskills. Except the Catskills.”

Run by novelist Susie Moloney and playwright Vern Thiessen, the retreat allows writers to work with in tandem with mentors, or on their own for the duration, with the bonus of having peers to read and discuss their projects. “I’m a city guy, but sometimes withdrawing from the overly-connected world we live in, is just what you need. You do some of your best work when your options for distraction are limited,” says Thiessen.

It’s not all work. Participants can go on a tour of the Zane Grey Museum, a hike along the Delaware River, campfires and a trip to the town of Bethel Woods, host to Woodstock, the world’s most famous music festival and museum. And of course, while in Rome: a must-see movie night featuring Dirty Dancing, when nobody puts Baby in the corner.

Moloney and Thiessen, both from Manitoba, are well-suited to host the week, being old hands at the retreat experience. Moloney, a best selling novelist whose books have been published all over the world, was a writer-in-residence for the Red River College Gemini Retreat for three years, and Thiessen ran an annual playwrights retreat in Italy for three summers.

The week-long retreat is limited to eight participants for maximum face time, and also because of space: it’s in the NACL Theatre Retreat Centre in Highland Lake, which is run by Tannis Kowalchuk, also formerly of Winnipeg, Manitoba.

The retreat is held August 28-September 5. Deadline for applications is June 15, 2011. Go to their WEBSITE Or for more information.

Continuing Education

Stanford Continuing Studies
Online Writing Courses
Please join us this Summer in one of many prestigious online writing courses offered through Stanford Continuing Studies. Work with a small group of writers in one of twelve Writer’s Studio courses.

Thanks to the flexibility of the online format, these courses are designed to fit into your schedule. You can log into our classes from any computer with Internet access, anywhere and at any time.

Courses are open to all adults, and we encourage all levels of writers to enroll. Whether you are just starting out, or finishing up your novel, you will find a course suited to your level of experience. Students will benefit from sharing their work with an eclectic community of writers-from many locations, with diverse backgrounds and writing styles.

SUMMER online courses include:

  • Short Story Writing
  • Creative Nonfiction: Writing the World
  • Short Stories from Life
  • Novel Writing Series: How to Seduce a Reader
  • Your American Life: The Audio Essay
  • Ten Weeks, Ten Stories
  • Writing 2.0: Blogs, Zines, and E-Poetry
  • Revision Demystified
  • Just Like a Movie: What Novelists Can Learn from the Silver Screen
  • Poetry: Image by Image, Line by Line
  • The Creative Nonfiction Book: The Bigger Picture
  • Magazine Writing
Interested in coming to campus?  Many in-class writing courses are also available.
Visit WEBSITE for full listing of our Summer writing courses.
Most classes begin the week of June 20.

And that’s it for now! Next newsletter will be out in two weeks.


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