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Words Across Canada

Conversations with Canadian and Indigenous writers presented in partnership with literary festivals across Canada.

Starting September 10th, Words Across Canada presents readings and discussions by Canadian and Indigenous authors from across the country.

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At the Crossroads

Thursday September 10th at 7pm ET / 4pm PT
Presented in partnership with Word Vancouver and Blue Metropolis Festival

A conversation with Griffin Poetry Prize winner Kaie Kellough (Dominoes at the Crossroads) and debut author Jack Wang (We Two Alone) about short fiction collections exploring race, history, and diaspora both within and beyond Canada. Hosted by Sue Carter of Quill & Quire.

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Worlds of Tomorrow

Thursday September 10th at 9pm ET / 7pm CT / 6pm PT
Presented in partnership with Word Vancouver and WOTS Saskatoon

What does the future hold for the natural world and our built environment? And how can our hopes for a better world lead us astray? Michael Christie (Greenwood), Kerri Sakamoto (Floating City), and Doreen Vanderstoop (Watershed) explore these questions and more. Hosted by Hal Wake.

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Decolonizing Children’s Literature

Tuesday September 15th at  8pm ET / 9pm AT / 5pm MST
Presented in partnership with WOTS Halifax and Wild Words North

Children’s authors Jenny Kay Dupuis (I Am Not a Number), Christy Jordan Fenton (Fatty Legs), and Rebecca Thomas (I’m Finding My Talk) discuss writing that confronts the legacy of colonialism and empowers readers to imagine better futures.

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Celebrating the 2020 Trillium Book Award for Poetry

Wednesday September 16th at 7pm ET
Presented in partnership with VerseFest with support from Ontario Creates
Ontario Creates | Ontario Créatif

A celebration of the English language 2020 Trillium Book Award for Poetry featuring finalists Doyali Islam (Heft) and Matthew Walsh (These Are Not the Potatoes of My Youth), and a pre-recorded reading by winner Roxanna Bennett (Unmeaningable). Hosted by David Alexander & Chuqiao Yang.

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Cartoonists Talk Community and Quarantine

Thursday September 17th at 7pm MDT / 9pm ET
Presented by The Word On The Street Lethbridge

When COVID closed our doors in March, Calgary artist Sam Hester started a serial Saturday comic for the online magazine The Sprawl, Alone Together, about the struggle and strange beauty of life in a pandemic. Join Sam in conversation with local cartoonist Eric Dyck to hear more about the power of art to bring us together, even when we’re physically apart.



I Read Canadian with Eric Walters

Friday September 18th at 12:15pm MDT / 2:15pm ET
Presented by The Word On The Street Lethbridge

In 2019, Eric Walters sparked the creation of a national day of celebration of Canadian books for young people, to raise awareness of Canadian books and celebrate the richness, diversity and breadth of Canadian literature. Join Eric in conversation with Lethbridge children’s literature advocate Michelle Dimnik to hear more about the #IReadCanadian project, how it started, and why it matters.

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Pourin’ Down Rain with Cheryl Foggo

Saturday September 19th @ 2pm MDT / 4pm ET
Presented by The Word On The Street Lethbridge

Celebrating the 30th anniversary edition of Pourin’ Down Rain, Cheryl Foggo’s landmark work about growing up Black on the Canadian prairies. As Cheryl explores her ancestry, what comes to light gives her the confidence to claim her place in the Canadian west as a proud Black woman. In this beautiful, moving work, she celebrates the Black experience and Black resiliency on the prairies.

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Truth Be Told

Sunday September 20th @ 3pm ET / 4pm AT / 1pm MDT
Presented in partnership with WOTS Halifax, Lethbridge, and Saskatoon

A double feature with authors from across the country. First, join us on a regional mystery tour with Alberta author DK Stone (Fall of Night) and St. John’s writer Kevin Major (Two for the Tablelands) on a regional mystery tour. Then, Carol Rose GoldenEagle and Andrea Gunraj discuss their characters’ journeys through loss, intergenerational trauma, healing, and recovery in their books The Narrows of Fear (Wapawikoscikanik) and The Lost Sister.

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From Stage to Page: In Conversation with Sarena Parmar

Monday September 21st@ 7pm ET
Presented by Diaspora Dialogues

Sarena Parmar’s The Orchard (After Chekhov) is an adaptation of Chekhov’s The Cherry Orchard, told through the lens of a Punjabi-Sikh family in the Okanagan Valley. With the bank calling and money low, will the Basrans be able to save their beloved orchard? The Orchard challenges our idea of what rural Canada looked and sounded like in the 1970s, offering a fresh perspective on our history, and a subversive look at ethnicity within the classical western canon. Hosted by Guillermo Verdecchia.

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Celebrating the 2020 Trillium Book Award

Tuesday September 22nd @ 7pm ET
Presented in partnership with Kingston Writers Fest with support from Ontario Creates
Ontario Creates | Ontario Créatif

An evening celebrating the English language Trillium Book Award for fiction featuring finalists Zalika Reid-Benta (Frying Plantain), Seth (Clyde Fans: A Picture Novel), Martha Baillie (Sister Language), and winner Téa Mutonji (Shut Up You’re Pretty). Hosted by CBC’s Ali Hassan.

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An Evening with Helen Humphreys

Wednesday September 23th @ 6:45pm ET
Presented by Kingston Writers Fest

Award-winning writer and former poet laureate of Kingston, Helen Humphreys brings us her newest grand and beautiful experiment in fiction: Rabbit Foot Bill. Set in a small Saskatchewan town, and based on a real-life story, it explores the ways people seek inner peace when their world has been upended. Interviewed by Kingston Writers Fest artistic director Barbara Bell.

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YA Fiction

Friday September 25th @ 9:30am PT / 12:30pm ET
Presented by Word Vancouver

Tash McAdam (Blood Sport), Sheena Kamal (Fight Like a Girl), and Christina Kilbourne (Safe Harbour) discuss how their young protagonists learn to exist in a world that demands them to be brave and smart in order to survive.

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Spotlight on Translation/Plein feux sur la traduction littéraire

Word Feast: Fredericton's Literary Festival

Friday September 25th @ 7pm AT / 6pm ET
Presented by Word Feast

Tune in for a conversation with Joshua Whitehead, Arianne Des Rochers, and Sophie Lavoie to hear more about the art of translation today, why it matters so much, and how it can open doors.

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Indigenous Memoir with Helen Knott & Jesse Thistle

Friday September 25th @ 8pm ET / 5pm MST
Presented in partnership with Wild Words North

Acclaimed memoirists Helen Knott (In My Own Moccasins) and Jesse Thistle (From the Ashes) discuss their bestselling books, their craft, and their respective journeys through addiction, inter-generational trauma, perseverance, and healing. Hosted by Tracey Lindberg.

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Grand Dames of Crime Fiction

Saturday September 26th @ 11:30am ET
Presented at The Word On The Street virtual festival
In partnership with Kingston WritersFest

Move over Nancy Drew – mavens of mystery C.S. O’Cinneide, Gail Bowen, and Ann Lambert are writing award-winning mysteries with strong lady leads. Follow the trail along with these sleuths, from finding a body to solving the murder!


What is Certain? Historical / Speculative Fiction

Saturday September 26th @ 12:30pm ET
Presented by Kingston Writers Fest

Praised by the Chicago Tribune as “hypnotically beautiful”, Aislinn Hunter’s novel The Certainties is also described as “elegiac and heart-pounding”, “a love letter in the guise of a song of despair”. Join Aislinn and creative Tricia Knowles as they talk about why this genre serves a story where past and present calamities collide, and delve into what it means to bear witness.

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In Conversation with Wanda Taylor and Afua Cooper on Black History

Saturday September 26th @ 11:30am PT / 2:30pm ET / 3:30pm AT
Presented by Word Vancouver in partnership with WOTS Toronto & Halifax

Author-bookseller Itah Sadu (A Different Booklist) interviews acclaimed authors Wanda Taylor (The Nova Scotia Home for Colored Children) and Afua Cooper (Black Matters) about Black history and what it means to call Canada home.

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Sonnet’s Shakespeare Reading and Q&A

Saturday September 26th @ 2pm MT / 5pm ET
Presented by Wild Words North

Reading by Sonnet L’Abbé followed by a Q&A led by Helen Knott focused on the following questions: How can poetry grapple with how some cultures assume the place of others? How can English-speaking writers use the English language to challenge the legacy of colonial literary values?



Fantastic Fiction for Young Readers

Saturday September 26th @ 7:00pm ET
Presented by the FOLD Kids Book Fest

From solving mysteries to faraway lands, find out how these kidlit authors create exciting new characters who chart their own paths through magical and mysterious adventures. Join David A. Robertson (The Barren Grounds), Nafiza Azad (The Candle and the Flame) and Michael Hutchinson (The Case of the Missing Auntie) as they discuss incredible stories for young readers.

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Poets on the Tangibility of Living

Sunday September 27th @ 11:30am ET
Presented at The Word On The Street virtual festival
n partnership with Kingston WritersFest

Join poets Sachiko Murakami (Render), A.F. Moritz (As Far As You Know), and Randy Lundy (Field Notes for the Self), as they traverse a series of befores and afters, experiencing the darknesses of life and exploring what comes after.


Wild Words for the North Public Readings

Sunday September 27th @ 1pm MT / 4pm ET
Presented by Wild Words North

Reading by Erín Moure from her translation into English of The Uplands: Book of the Courel and other poems, by 20th century Galician poet Uxío Novoneyra, along with readings by workshop participants of the poems they wrote, translating the land where they live into words.