Margaret Atwood, Will Self at this year's Vancouver Writers Fest: biggest lineup ever

Book lovers, rejoice: celebrated Canadian author Margaret Atwood is just one of the many highlights of the Vancuver's Writers Fest.

After a quarter century of bringing the best authors in the world to Vancouver readers, this year’s Vancouver Writers Fest will present more than 80 events, the largest number in the Festival’s history. Over six days in October, writers from Canada as well as some of the biggest international names in writing will join thousands of readers at the annual festival. The Writers Fest is set for Oct. 22 to 27 on Granville Island in Vancouver.

In addition to panel discussions, spoken word performances, poetry jams, events for children in both English and French, and readings accompanied by musicians, this year’s Festival showcases a theatrical cabaret performance by Canadian playwright Tomson Highway as well as an improv performance by Canadian comedian and author Colin Mochrie.

 

The award-winning lineup of authors includes Canadian authors Margaret AtwoodJoseph Boyden, Anne Carson, Douglas Coupland, Michael Crummey, Wayne Johnston, Lisa Moore, Meg Tilly, Michel Tremblay and Michael Winter. From the UK, the Festival presents Booker-prize nominated author, journalist and television personality Will Self and Dublin IMPAC nominee Nadeem Aslam. New Zealand authors Eleanor Catton and Charlotte Grimshaw will also appear, along with Italy’s Viola Di Grado and Iran’s Sahar Delijani. Best-selling authors Maureen Johnson and Maggie Stiefvater are also part of the more than 100 authors at the Festival.

 

This year’s Festival also features an unprecedented selection of non-fiction writers, including literary critic John Freeman, American investigative journalist Eric SchlosserAlan Weisman, author of The World Without Us, and George Packer, staff writer for The New Yorker and author of The Unwinding. Canadian journalist Amanda Lindout, who spent a terrifying 460 days in the hands of Somali kidnappers, will appear at the Festival with a memoir of her experience.

 

“This is the first time we have featured non-fiction in a series of prime time events and we are thrilled to have some great writers bringing thoughtful and provocative books,” says Hal Wake, Artistic Director of the Festival. “We work hard to continue the Vancouver Writers Fest’s reputation for bringing establishedwriters such as Margaret Atwood and Tomson Highway, as well as rising stars like Marisha PesslXiaolu Guo and Anthony De Sa. We are also excited about the major writers we are presenting for the first time like Scott Turow, Paul Muldoon, Anne Carson and Will Self.”

 

For grades K – 12 students, the Festival features daytime events in both French and English that will bring more than 5,000 young readers to Granville Island.

 

Two special events bookend the Festival. On Oct. 3 at the Frederic Wood Theatre, J.B. MacKinnon, author of The 100-Mile Diet talks about his new book, The Once and Future World which provides an eye-opening account of nature as it was, and as it is now, a planet with just one-tenth of its former abundance. Following the Festival, humourist David Sedaris will delight audiences with his new book Let's Explore Diabetes with Owls. That event takes place on Nov. 12 at the Chan Centre. Tickets for both these special events are on sale now.

Two special events bookend the Festival. On Oct. 3 at the Frederic Wood Theatre, J.B. MacKinnon, author of The 100-Mile Diet talks about his new book, The Once and Future World which provides an eye-opening account of nature as it was, and as it is now, a planet with just one-tenth of its former abundance. Following the Festival, humourist David Sedaris will delight audiences with his new book Let's Explore Diabetes with Owls. That event takes place on Nov. 12 at the Chan Centre. Tickets for both these special events are on sale now.

The full lineup of events will be online on Aug. 16 at www.writersfest.bc.ca. Tickets for the Festival events go on sale to the public on Monday, Sept. 9, through VancouverTix.com or by calling 604-629-8849. Tickets will also be available at the Writers Fest box office, 1398 Cartwright Stree

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