Calling Wild Writers (and Readers!)

Do you recall that St. Jerome’s University at UWaterloo houses an award-winning literary magazine, The New Quarterly? Have you heard of their annual literary festival? Care to take in a wide-ranging conversation about writing between two highly decorated Canadian authors?

The Wild Writers Festival, November 4 to 6, will feature Rosemary Sullivan and Guy Gavriel Kay discussing alternate histories with CBC’s Craig Norris on the Friday evening at the CIGI campus auditorium in Waterloo.

Sullivan is author of Stalin’s Daughter, which won a host of national and international awards, including the 2016 RBC Charles Taylor Prize, the top accolade for non-fiction in Canada. For her distinguished contributions to Canadian arts and culture, including authoring 14 books, she was conferred as an Officer of the Order of Canada in 2012.

Kay has been nominated four times for the World Fantasy Award, with Ysabel winning in 2008. The author of a book of poetry and 13 novels, including this year’s Children of Earth and Sky, his fiction has been translated into 25 languages. Kay was appointed to the Order of Canada in 2014.

As a writer, aspiring and established, care to take in a worthy workshop or engaging panel discussion?

Waterloo Region’s premier literary event will have workshops about writing thrillers, fantasy, young adult/detective, dialogue, non-fiction and poetry. Also on the Saturday at the Balsillie School of International Affairs, panel discussions will shed a light on small press publishing, translations, fiction and poetry.

Saturday evening’s speakeasy at the Berlin in Kitchener will feature Zarqa Nawaz, creator of the hit CBC show Little Mosque on the Prairie.

Sunday’s literary brunch, at the Rhapsody Barrel Bar in Kitchener, will highlight award-winning authors Madeleine Thien, Alissa York and Michael Helm. Thien’s Do Not Say We Have Nothing has been shortlisted for this year’s prestigious Man Booker Prize.

The Wild Writers Festival, now in its fifth year, was created and is managed by The New Quarterly magazine. One of Canada’s most decorated literary magazines resides in Waterloo, and it’s been here for 35 years. The New Quarterly (TNQ) has won 10 gold and seven silver medals and had 31 honourable mentions in the 17 years that it has participated in the National Magazine Awards.

“35&5 is our way to salute thirty-five years of The New Quarterly and five years of the Wild Writers Festival,” says TNQ editor Pamela Mulloy.

The New Quarterly, a charitable not-for-profit organization, has been publishing the best of new Canadian writing — fiction, poetry, author interviews and talk about writing — since 1981.

More information about this year’s Wild Writers Festival can be found at #WildWriters and @tnqwildwriters. Contact TNQ editor Pamela Mulloy at:; 519-884-8111, ext. 28290, or TNQ managing editor Sophie Blom at


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