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Workshop Presenters Bios
Below is a list of speakers and a brief biography. Speakers participating in the Blue Pencil Café are indicated. Choose your three Blue Pencil authors and enter them on the registration form.
George Bowering – Multi genre
Canada's first Poet Laureate, was born in the Okanagan Valley. He has taught literature at the University of Calgary, the University of Western Ontario and Simon Fraser University, and he continues to act as a Canadian literary ambassador at international conferences and readings. A distinguished novelist, poet, editor, professor, historian and tireless supporter of fellow writers, Bowering has authored more than eighty books, including works of poetry, fiction, autobiography, biography and youth fiction. He has won the Governor General's Award for Poetry, the Governor General's Award for Fiction, the Nichol Chapbook Award for Poetry in both 1991 and 1992, the Canadian Author's Association Award for Poetry and was awarded an Honorary Degree (D. Litt.) from the University of British Columbia in 1994. His delightful sense of humour is evident in both his writing and his presentations.
Eileen Cook - Young Adult/ Romance/ multi genre
Eileen Cook is a multi-published author with her novels appearing in eight different languages. She spent most of her teen years wishing she were someone else or somewhere else, which is great training for a writer. Her latest release, The Almost Truth came out in December 2012. Her books have been optioned for film and TV, and while nothing has yet gone into production, she's already planning her Oscar speech.
Eileen lives in Vancouver with her husband and two dogs and no longer wishes to be anyone or anywhere else. www.eileencook.com
Anthony Dalton - Adventure, Non Fiction
A former expedition leader working in Africa, the Middle East and the Arctic, Anthony Dalton is the author of 13 non-fiction books, co-author of two others and has had his illustrated articles published in magazines and newspapers in 20 countries and 9 languages. His first novel, Relentless Pursuit, will be published in September 2013. Anthony is the Past President of the Canadian Authors Association, a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society and a member of the Welsh Academy. He has won awards and honours in Canada for his writing and services to other writers. He now spends much of his time cruising the world as a guest speaker for two cruise ship lines. He lives in Tsawwassen, B.C. www.anthonydalton.net
Mona Fertig - Publisher
Born in Vancouver, Mona Fertig is a poet, publisher and book artist. Her many books and chapbooks include: The Unsettled, Sex Death & Travel, This is Paradise, and The Life and Art of George Fertig (#3 in the Unheralded Artists of BC series). She has been involved with the literary arts scene in Vancouver, BC since she was 17. Founder and director of Canada's first literary centre, the Literary Storefront (1978-1982) she has also been a bookseller, organizer of literary events, a political organizer and curator. She is the dynamic publisher of Mother Tongue Publishing on Salt Spring Island, BC. She and her husband have a son and daughter. www.mothertonguepublishing.com
Garry Gottfriedson - Poet
Garry is from Kamloops, BC. He is a self- employed rancher from the Secwepemc Nation. He was raised knowing his cultural teachings and has been teaching them within his nation. He holds a Masters Degree in Education. In 1987, the Naropa Institute in Boulder, Colorado awarded him the Gerald Red Elk Creative Writing Scholarship. There, he studied creative writing under Allen Ginsberg, Marianne Faithful and others. Currently, he has 7 published books. He has read from his work across Canada, United States, Europe, and Asia. His work has been anthologized and published nationally and internationally. For information on Garry's books go to http://ronsdalepress.com/authors/garry-gottfriedson
Scott Fitzgerald Gray - Fantasy/ Speculative Fiction
Scott Fitzgerald Gray has been flogging his imagination professionally since deciding he wanted to be a writer and abandoning any hope of a real career in about the fourth grade. That was the year speculative fiction and fantasy kindled an appetite for literary escapism that still drives his creativity. In addition to the books published under his own Insane Angel Studios imprint, Scott has written for film and television, works as a designer and editor of role playing games, and spends a lot of time helping other writers do their best work. www.insaneangel.com
Jacqueline Guest - Young Adult
International award winning author Jacqueline Guest began writing professionally in Grade 5 when she was paid 25 cents by her brother to write his Language Arts essay. She has now penned 17 novels and numerous short stories with topics ranging from the Canadian Robin Hood to violent video games. When work takes her traveling, she does amazing things- like standing on an iceberg and flying a kite in a hurricane, not to mention wearing bedroom slippers in Parliament. Jacqueline knows that READING ROCKS! www.jacquelineguest.com
Blu & Kelly Hopkins - Musicians, Writers of Lyrics
Winner of a 2007 OMA Award and a 2008 BCIMA Award, singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Blu Hopkins has been travelling, writing songs and performing them for over thirty years. A true troubadour Blu's storytelling songwriting style reflects his experience working and performing across Canada.
Blu has been nominated sixteen times for OMA Awards and BCIMA Awards in both Songwriter and Folk Artist categories and with his band "Silvercreek" as Folk Roots/Bluegrass band of the year.
Kelly Hopkins is also an accomplished multi-instrumentalist and songwriter, her songs ranging from rollicking & fun to heartfelt & poignant ballads. Kelly is a great acoustic bass player, and her mandolin compositions are traditional sounding yet fresh tunes that are delighting audiences and other musicians everywhere.
Shelagh Jamieson - Editor
Shelagh Jamieson is Director of Publishing and Communications for the Factors Group. In addition to overseeing corporate communications, she is managing editor of Mind Publishing, the company's book-publishing division. She is a member of the Editors' Association of Canada and has been involved in writing and editing for over 20 years, primarily within the natural health product industry. Shelagh is a UBC graduate, and has studied at the Canadian Centre for Studies in Publishing and the Sauder School of Business. In addition to her passion for words, she is an avid gardener, loves to travel, and enjoys photography.
Mike McCardell - Stories of the human condition/humour, Global TV reporter
Everything creates you. And you create everything.
That's me. I had no father, which is important. My father was a drunk and violent. I learned about drunks and violence. My Mother worked hard. I learned about working.
I read newspapers with stories about criminals. I learned about criminals, and stories. Lived with them. Saw bad things. Saw people with gardens and learned about nice people with flowers. Became one of them. All of that makes me. www.harbourpublishing.com/author
Lucas Myers - Theatre/Character Building/Scripts
Lucas Myers has been creating theatre since his graduation from the National Theatre School in 1998. He has performed in major theatres across Canada as well as touring internationally to Europe, New Zealand, Mexico, Central Asia, and Ymir. In 2001 his interests turned to collaborative creation and he studied with the SITI Company of New York, returning to the West Coast to apply their techniques with like-minded artists. With the birth of his first child in 2006, he relocated to Nelson, BC and started Pilotcopilot Theatre, which is dedicated to creating new works and touring productions locally, nationally, and internationally. www.pilotcopilot.com
Andreas Schroeder - Freelance/Poetry/multi genre
Andreas Schroeder has made his living as a freelance writer in BC for the past 45 years. His 25 books include works of fiction, creative nonfiction, poetry, history, translation and literary criticism. For a dozen years (1990-2002) he was the "Resident Crookologist" on CBC radio's BASIC BLACK SHOW, and has won or been shortlisted for over a dozen literary awards, including the Governor-General's Award for Nonfiction (1977), the Sealbooks First Novelist Award (1984) and a CAJ Best Investigative Journalism Award (1991). He currently holds the Rogers Communications Chair in Creative Nonfiction in UBC's Creative Writing Program. www.apschroeder.com
Daniel Wood - Magazine Writer/Non Fiction
Vancouver's Daniel Wood is one of Canada's best-known magazine writers, and finalist/winner of over 100 regional, national, or international writing awards. He's also the author of 14 books. His stories often deal with conflicts around social justice, environmental abuse, and the outsider's role in a doctrinaire world. He has taught writing at Simon Fraser University for 20 years, and is one of the founders of both the Western Magazine Awards and the Federation of B.C. Writers. In recognition of his work, the Western Magazine Awards gave him its Lifetime Achievement Award in 2000.