Oh, September. I have such a hard time making friends with you. How can I let go of July and August?
Hello, Members and Friends.
Did you enjoy your summer? We hope so, and that it was both restful and productive.
1. WordsFall is just around the corner. The Parkland Village Inn is already full for the weekend of October 27-29, but we’d still love to have you participate! There are lots of places to rent in the area, and we have reserved two Fundy National Park apartments available if needed. That would hold at least 2 people per apartment. If you can't commit to coming for the whole weekend, the Saturday day pass is a great option, so you can take in a couple of workshops, have lunch and enjoy Fundy Park?
We are also offering registration per workshop, if you just want to take a trip to Alma to hear a particular speaker. It's a gorgeous drive, and we will hope and pray for mild weather! The Fundy is mercurial, but you never know... You can check out the lineup on the website.
October in Alma.2. This Saturday, September 16, is the fourth edition of Buy a New Brunswick Book Day. Use the digital posters (Facebook, Instagram), tagline, and hashtags (#September16 #MyNBbooks #IReadLocal) to promote I’m Buying a NB Book day on social media for your own book sales.
As we speak, Hurricane Lee is travelling up the Atlantic and may want to join the initiative—but don’t let him stop you from purchasing a great NB Book!
3. The National Film Board of Canada will host a community screening of their documentary about David Adams Richards in Miramichi in mid- to late- November. This feature-length documentary, Geographies of DAR, explores the life and literary works of the renowned Canadian author. Through stunning visuals, insightful interviews and poignant excerpts from his writings voiced by fellow authors, the film explores the profound connection between Richards’ personal geography and his literary landscapes, revealing how the intertwining of his own experiences and Eastern Canada’s Miramichi shaped his storytelling.
You can view the media kit, which features selected clips and more details about the film here: https://mediaspace.nfb.ca/epk/the-geographies-of-dar/
The Writers’ Federation of New Brunswick will co-sponsor this event, and we hope many of you will attend the screening. The NFB hopes that both the director, Monique LeBlanc, and DAR himself will be in attendance. We hope you will support the showing of this excellent film about one of New Brunswick’s most influential writers. We will provide more details as they become available.
3. Given the popularity of our annual retreat (see Thandiwe McCarthy’s current blog post), which this year took place in August, we have tentatively booked February 23 – 25, 2024 at Villa Madonna as our first annual winter retreat. Drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org if you think you could use a writing break in February.
4. Hey, NB authors - don’t forget! The deadline for submissions to the 2023 New Brunswick Book Awards is December 1. Please fill out the submission form, and send two copies of your book to WFNB, in care of 52 Amity Street, Moncton, NB E1G 0S3. Rules can be found on the competition page.
5. And just as the NBBA is closing to submissions, The NB Writing Competition will open on December 1 and run, as usual, until the end of February. It’s never too early to dig out that unpublished piece and starting polishing.
That's it for now. Talk soon,
Rhonda Bulmer and Kris Windley.
WELCOME, NEW MEMBERS!
Luke Francis Beirne – Luke (lukefrancisbeirne.com) was born in Ireland and lives in Saint John, New Brunswick, on Wolastoqey land. His first novel, Foxhunt, was published by Baraka Books in 2022. His second novel, Blacklion, will be published in September 2023. He writes Fiction, Historical Fiction, Journalism, and Freelance writing. Welcome, Luke!
Mark Allan Green - Mark Allan Greene (markallangreene.com) grew up in Saint John, and now lives in Edmonton. He is a writer, playwright and practicing lawyer who retains a fascination with the history of his hometown and its dramatic destruction and rebuilding. He is interested in non-fiction. Welcome, Mark!
Jess Stiles – Is interested in many genres, including Children, Editing, Fantasy, Fiction, Illustration, Science Fiction, Scriptwriting, Graphic Novel, and Middle Grade. Welcome, Jess!Kellie Underhill – Kellie hails from Barnettville (http://www.kellieunderhill.com/) and writes in many genres, including Blogging, Creative non-fiction, Editing, Essays, Fiction, Journalism, Memoir, Non-Fiction, Copywriting. Welcome, Kellie!
Heather Browne will be conducting another eight-week creative writing course in Fredericton. See details under workshops and retreats.
CSG Publishing House is proud to announce that the upcoming novel, Dante's Inferno by Charlotte St. James (the pen name of WFNB member Vanessa Hawkins) is available for PRE-ORDER. Dante's Inferno is a sexy retelling of Dante Alighieri's 14th century epic poem, Divine Comedy and runner up of the 2022 David Adams Richard's Award. It will be released on Sept 27th.
Big congrats to Carolyn Higgins – whose written piece “Language Matters” was longlisted for the CBC non-fiction prize! The winner of the 2023 CBC Nonfiction Prize will receive $6,000 from the Canada Council for the Arts, have their work published on CBC Books and win a two-week writing residency at Artscape Gibraltar Point. Four finalists will each receive $1,000 from the Canada Council for the Arts and have their work published on CBC Books.
Jill MacLean’s medieval novel, The Arrows of Mercy, is one of three finalists in the fiction category of the nation-wide Whistler Independent Book Awards, sponsored by The Writers’ Union of Canada “to recognize excellence in Canadian self-publishing.” (Congratulations, Jill!) The Miramichi Reader and the Historical Novel Society (US and UK) have each given it an extremely good review. Jill will be reading from The Arrows of Mercy at Westminster Books in Fredericton, on Sunday September 24th at 3 pm.
Lisa Thompson is announcing that The Hot Bottled Poetry Podcast has dropped! HOT BOTTLED POETRY: THE OPEN MIC - A LITERARY JOURNEY INTO WORDS , hosted by Chris Wanamaker. Also, if artists, poets, musicians, comedians, storytellers, are interested in joining our POETS AND MUSICIANS chat room, please contact Lisa at: Thompson.lisaP@gmail.com
The Word Feast Literary Festival Society is searching for enthusiastic board members passionate about New Brunswick literature! We are looking for people who want to take a hands-on approach to planning events, coordinating writing contests, and leading the literary festivals society in a positive direction focused on longevity. Experience with board procedures or literary events is an asset but not required.
Positions to fill:
· General board memberIf you are interested in joining the board or would like more information, please contact Grace Taylor (Chair, They/Them) by email at email@example.com
On Saturday, October 14, the Fredericton Public Library (12 Carleton Street, Fredericton) will host a Local Authors Book Fair onsite in conjunction with Word Feast 2023. We are excited to issue a call for participants in the local writing and publishing communities.
This free day-long event will provide the opportunity for New Brunswick-based authors to speak about or read from their book in a public space, to sell their book if they wish, and meet other authors and local readers.
This will be a free drop-in event for the public consisting of about 15 presenting authors and up to 30 authors selling books, with time and space provided for light refreshments and perusing tables. Author involvement consists of offering a 10–15-minute presentation or a reading of their book and the option to setup a table alongside fellow authors to sell and sign their book.
Feel free to refer authors to Michelle Lovegrove Thomson (firstname.lastname@example.org) and/or colleague Amanda Lloyd (Amanda.email@example.com) to reserve a table or obtain more information. We are aiming to have a tentative schedule and list of participating authors by September 15.
Canadian Publishing Veterans Launch New Press: Leigh Nash, Andrew Faulkner, and Debby de Groot are proud to announce an exciting new publishing venture: Assembly Press. Assembly Press will be a boutique publishing house, designed to be independent, inclusive, and incisive, and will publish first-class fiction, nonfiction, and poetry. The first list is scheduled for Spring 2024, and distribution deals are already in place including PGC in Canada.
The Artsvest national mentorship program is launching in September! Each organization has access to 2 hours of mentorship with any of our mentors, and most participants use this for support with specific topics (such as “How can I generate new leads?”, “How can I make my pitch deck more effective”, “Are my sponsor reports effective?” etc).
Not sure where to start? Join us for the Artsvest Mentorship Orientation sessions! We will be hosting two mentorship orientation sessions to help you navigate the MentorCity platform and the artsvest mentorship program.
CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS
Sharpen your pencils, dust off your duotangs: public submissions for Assembly Press are now open! Learn more about what we’re looking for here.
Sunspot Lit seeks a story, essay, excerpt from longer prose pieces, artwork, graphic novel, or poem that combines excellence in craft with reader or audience appeal.
Goldilocks Zone: $500 for Authors/Artists
Feedback for fiction and nonfiction submissions available for additional fee. Prize: $500 cash and publication for the winner; publication for runners-up and finalists. Closes September 30, 2023. Enter through Submittable: or Duotrope: .
Call for Entries: 2024 Next Generation Indie Book Awards
If you would like to receive greater recognition, monetary prizes, awards and exposure for your books, here is an opportunity not to miss. Enter the 2024 Next Generation Indie Book Awards.
Calling all indie book authors and publishers - including small presses, mid-size independent publishers, university presses, e-book publishers, and self-published authors who have a book written in English released in 2022, 2023 or 2024 or with a 2022, 2023 or 2024 copyright date to enter the most rewarding book awards program.
Offering 80+ Categories - More than 80 Awards – with over 80 monetary prizes totaling over $10,000 in cash, including $1,500 cash prizes plus trophies for best fiction book and best non-fiction book, $750 cash prizes plus trophies for second best fiction book and non-fiction book and $500 cash prizes plus trophies for third best fiction book and non-fiction book!
Early Bird Discount! Enter by September 30, 2023 and your second category is free.
Questions: Contact Lilac Arch Press at : firstname.lastname@example.org
WRITERS’ WORKSHOPS, CONFERENCES
Fredericton Recreation & Culture presents:
Writing Well 2: A creative writing course (Oct 3- Nov 21)
Registration opened on Sept 11
Tuesdays, 9:30-11:30 am, beginning Oct 3
at the Fredericton Seniors Center (112 Johnston Ave)
Instructor: Heather Browne, MFA in Creative Writing, leads an eight week in- house writing program.
Heather’s writing prompts, timed writing sessions, and mini lectures are designed to open new writing experiences for participants and inspire work that they engage in outside of class.
Learn how to make the page your friend and discover more about writing (and living) well. The Writing Well 2 series emphasizes traditional forms over the more organic ones of the first. Writing Well 1 is not a requirement. Explore your creative side while writing with others around a “table for writers”.
All interested adults are welcome. For more information or to register please call 506-260-0605.
The University of King’s College writing workshops are back! These non-credit courses are for writers at all stages of their work, taught by our MFA faculty and authors from across the country.
New this year: Black Voices, Black Stories. This workshop, designed for Black authors who want to both develop their craft and learn how to navigate the publishing industry, is taught by author of Birchtown and the Black Loyalists and The Nova Scotia Home for Colored Children Wanda Taylor.
Another new addition to the line-up this fall is Writing for Video Games, a course on the unique format of narrative for games, taught by award-winning Canadian novelist Dave Wilson. Bonny Reichert, MFA’22, author of the forthcoming book How to Share an Egg: A True Story of Hunger, Love and Plenty, will be teaching Food Writing, and Lezlie Lowe will teach a course called Writing Your Family Story.
King’s is also bringing back two of our writing fundamentals workshops: Introduction to Memoir and Fiction Fundamentals.
Participants can register for the King’s writing workshops here. Courses begin the first week of October and run for 8 weeks.
Check back next month for more writing development opportunities from the web, across Canada and across the globe!
WRITING CONTESTS-- OPEN FOR SUBMISSIONS
Journals, Zines and Podcasts
Publishers and Literary Markets
Grants, Residencies and Poet Laureateships
An artist with a new and early career artist profile is eligible to apply for grants from three Explore and Create components:
To be eligible as a New/Early Career Artist, you must:
Create an account on the portal, and then submit a new and early career artist profile. You can only have one of these profiles. Create it and apply with your main field of practice—you can still apply for grants with other fields of practice later on. Make sure your CV matches with the eligibility criteria listed above. We recommend you get started with your profile well ahead of the competition you’re working towards because your profile will need to be validated before you can apply for a grant.
Canadian Writing Markets
Services for Writers
Writing Mentoring /Coaching
Post a Short Ad
Ongoing Membership Benefits
Group Health Insurance for Writers
Present your current membership card to receive a 10% discount at the following independent bookstores: and Blind Forest Books & Novelties in Sackville, Cover to Cover Books in Riverview, Tidewater Books in Sackville, and Westminster Books in Fredericton.
Charlotte Country, St. Andrews Vanessa Hawkins
Fredericton Jenna Lyn Albert
Moncton, Dieppe, Riverview Kayla Geitzler
Saint John, Grand Bay-Westfield, Rothesay Martha Vowles
Shediac Louise Comtois
Sussex Jane Simpson
Tantramar, Sackville, Port Elgin, Dorchester Geordie Miller
Nancy Bauer, Ann Brennan, Kent Bulmer, Rhonda Bulmer, Wayne Curtis, Sheree Fitch, Jean Frances, Cathy Fynn, Ginny Hill, M. Travis Lane, Gwen Martin, M. Anne Mitton, David Adams Richards, Valerie Sherrard, Lee D. Thompson, Doug Underhill
Become a Lifetime Member
Lifetime membership costs $1000. We appreciate the generosity of those members who are ensuring the continuity of the WFNB, and its impact on NB writers, by such a donation. Contact us at email@example.com for more details.
Lifetime Membership has been bestowed on those founding members who helped establish the WFNB in the 1980s. It is also sometimes bestowed on those who have made a significant volunteer contribution to the life of our organization.
See the main page of our website for a list of general sponsors, and sponsors of our awards programs.
The Writers’ Federation of New Brunswick acknowledges that the land on which we live and work, gather and create is, by law, the traditional unceded territory of the Wolastoqiyik and Mi’kmaq Peoples, and we honour the spirit of the Treaties of Peace and Friendship.
SEEKING BACK ISSUES of Historical publications
Dear WFNB Members:
Ian LeTourneau is currently looking for New Brunswick books, chapbooks, magazines, broadsides, and ephemera for research and collecting purposes. He is happy to take anything you have off your hands or negotiate a fair price for the rarer stuff. Specifically, Ian is looking for:
Cadence. Female Voices anthology. Edited by Kayla Geitzler and Elizabeth Blanchard. Frog Hollow, 2020.
Scroll. Wombat Literary Series #1.
Fiddlehead Poetry Books: especially Fred Cogswell, Stunted Strong (1954), Al Purdy, Emu, Remember! (1956), FIVE NEW BRUNSWICK POETS, but he also has many holes to fill from their 300+ publications.
Any New Brunswick chapbooks, but especially 9-14, 16-20, 22-23.
Any books or chapbooks by RM Vaughan or Owl's Head Press.
Any chapbooks by Joe Blades or Broken Jaw Press or Wild East Publishing Co-operative (they produced the Salamanca Chapbook series).
"A little something..." series of broadsides by Broken Jaw, Ian needs: 1, 9, 22-25, 28, 31, 36, 37.
Very early issues of The Fiddlehead: Ian needs 1-17, 23-26, 30, 31, 33, 34, 37, 49, 53, 55, 67, 68 and a broadside “I’m a silence so grim” by Milton Acorn which was folded inside spring 1963 issue, no. 56.
The Cormorant: I need Issues 1.1- 9.1, 10.2, 11.2-12.2, 15.1-onward but happy to have any in duplicate.
Any back Issues of magazines such as Urchin, Floorboards, Germination, Qwerty, New Muse of Contempt, Dooryard Post, ArtsAtlantic, Intervales, First Encounter, Galleon, Vox, Studies in Canadian Literature, Ellipse, Pottersfield Portfolio (esp. the NB-printed ones), etc.
Any chapbooks, broadsides, etc. by NB authors. Ian would be particularly grateful for NB literary ephemera like printed editions of NB Ink, the WFNB newsletter, old Goose Lane or Broken Jaw catalogues, event/reading posters, programs, brochures, Writing on the Wall exhibition brochures (only missing Nela Rio), newspaper sections like NB Reader, Salon. And in general, anything NB produced or by an NB author.
Please contact Ian LeTourneau at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any of the above. Thank you!
A note about our Inkspot Survey
We sent out a call for information earlier in the summer to help develop our strategic plan and fundraising efforts. We sent a link to a long and boring survey about demographics and program satisfaction and were hoping to get enough responses to be able to measure a decent population size.
We do know that filling out online surveys about demographics and program satisfaction is not a super exciting summer activity, so we were cautiously optimistic.
We were very gratified to have received more than eighty completed responses, and lots of actionable suggestions and valuable info. Thank you!
We drew an email from all of those provided by responders and have sent information to that winner about how to claim their free year of WFNB membership. Congrats!
Many responders value WordSpring and WordsFall very highly (and the chance they provide to spend time together in community while learning craft and business skills), as well as the opportunities for employment and public outreach that programs like WiSP can provide to writers.
You'd also like to see more monthly or online workshops, further development of public readings or showcases, the broadening of access to programs, and a solution to the problem of finding and sustaining smaller writing groups.
Thanks again for the thoughtful and helpful responses you all took the time and effort to share with us. We'll be sharing more information about how we are planning on folding your ideas and priorities into our continued development of WFNB programs and initiatives over the coming months. We're really excited about things to come, so keep an eye out for more updates.
A word about Writing Groups
When filling out their member profiles, a great many people tick off the box beside the sentence, "I would like to join a writing group," and others also very often tick off, "I would like to create a writing group."
We have just updated our list in Inkspot thanks to a recent informative post on our Facebook page, but there are undoubtedly more writing groups that don't take place in Moncton, Saint John or Fredericton.
Do you have a writers' group that meets elsewhere? From Sackville/Dorchester, up the Acadian coast to Shediac, Bouctouche, Richibucto, all the way to the Miramichi, Bathurst, Campbellton or Edmunston? How about along the Fundy coast, or the Western part of New Brunswick? If you do, and you are open to new writers, please let us know.
Writing groups are tricky things. There's a certain amount of magic involved in getting a productive group together, and the members themselves must be motivated to create it and keep it running. But there is no doubt that being involved with a regular, committed writing group helps build the skills of writers and pushes them toward publication.
In the Inkwell blog in the members-only section, there's a story entitled, "A sprinkle of fairy dust: The magic of Seaside Scribes." This story covers Martha Vowles' 2022 WordSpring workshop on How to Create and Sustain a Healthy, Happy Writing Group - She provided pdfs of her notes on that subject, and they are included at the bottom of the article. This is very practical and helpful.
Once again, if you run a current writing group within our membership, if you would like to promote your willingness to create a writing group, or know of other writing groups who are accepting new members, please let us know at email@example.com, so that we can make that information available to those who might be looking for a group with whom to share their work.
In the meantime, if you do not have a writing group, building relationships with lots of other writers--people who you like and connect to--makes the formation of a writing group (or an invitation to join one) more likely. I was invited into a small writing group a couple of years ago - only five people, and most live in Sussex/Elgin, so we always meet in Sussex. They are all published writers, at varying levels, and I'm lucky to be included. I drive to meet them once a month from Moncton. It's a 40-minute drive, but I gladly do it because the relationship is valuable. Another person drives from Fredericton in order to attend.
We have breakfast and read what we're working on, and everyone comments on everyone's work, which is in itself a learning process. I don't find that I make the same insightful comments as the others, who are award-winning writers and editors. These things come with time and experience.
If you can't find a current group right away, start at least by looking for other writers you might connect with in your community. It's worth the effort.
We will be thinking of ways to facilitate community-building for our membership in the future, not just for matching folk together for writing groups, but for all aspects of artistic sharing.