Passionate Public Speaking

Public speaking ranks right up there with fear of dying! Pretty powerful! And terrifying.

Talk! In Public!

But fear of public speaking can be overcome. I know because I did it. And I’ll be sharing how at the Okanagan Valley Writers Festival April 7, 2018 in sunshine and wine country: lovely Penticton, British Columbia.

Best of all, I’ll be with a fabulous group of other writers. Topics range from writing erotica to poetry; editing and researching; building story layers, scenes and characters; publishing traditionally and the solo route; writing a  dynamite query letter, perfecting your pitch, and then selling the darn thing. Oh yes, and Snake-oil. Check it out here.


Carol Rose Daniels, poet, novelist and short story writer, playwright, journalist, and visual artist (phew, I’m worn out just listing them all) .

Robert Mackwood, owner and agent for Seventh Avenue Literary Agency – you know, what every author dreams of having – an agent.

Michelle Barker, award-winning author of poetry and YA literature. Her YA novel The House of One Thousand Eyes will be out this fall.

Margo Bates – funny lady, oh yes she also writes, gives writing workshops, and does a passel of other things. Past president Canadian Authors Metro Vancouver branch.

Jonas Saul who writes thrillers and plays on the same Amazon sales level as Stephen King and Dean Koontz. Travels the world to do research – lucky guy.

Elma Schemenauer whose passion is history and has – count them – 77 books to her credit. Another one with Saskatchewan roots on the panel.

Lorna Schultz Nicholson who has only written 30 some books, and won  multiple awards for them. Kids love her books.

Sylvia Taylor, writes, edits, educates and consults. Published The Fisher Queen and Beckoned by the Sea: Women at Work on the Cascadia Coast.

Shannon Linden who writes for glossies and newspapers, her passion for writing ignited by her time in the Middle East.

Jennifer Manuel, 2017 Ethel Wilson Fiction Prize winner for The Heaviness of Things That Float and acclaimed for her short fiction.

Join us! For tickets and more information, visit the Okanagan Valley Writers Festival website

Canadian Authors Literary Awards for 2017

The Canadian Authors Association (CAA) is a national organization which since 1921 has been dedicated to promoting writers across Canada and to encouraging works of literary and artistic merit. It provides a wide variety of programs, services and resources, and advocacy on behalf of writers. Its annual CanWrite Conference offers authors the opportunity to learn from one another and from experts in the field.

One outstanding service the CAA provides is its Literary Awards which not only recognize a writer’s craft but also provide much-valued recognition and publicity.

On June 24th, CAA announced the 2017 winners:

Fiction: Alissa York for The Naturalist (Randomhouse Canada)
Nominees: Gail Anderson-Dargatz for The Spawning Grounds (Alfred A. Knopf Canada); Madeleine Thien for Do Not Say We Have Nothing(PenguinRandomhouse)

Poetry: Johanna Skibsrud for The Description of the World (Wolsak and Wynn)
Nominees: Juliane Okot Bitek for 100 Days (University of Alberta Press); D.S. Stymeist for The Bone Weir (Frontenac House Poetry)

Canadian History: Charlotte Gray for The Promise of Canada (Simon & Schuster Canada)
Nominees: Peter C. Newman for Hostages to Fortune (Simon & Schuster Canada); Jane Urquhart for A Number of Things (HarperCollins Canada)

Emerging Writer: Eva Crocker
Nominees: Richard Kelly Kemick; Maria Toorpakai

Canadian Authors Fred Kerner Award: Margo Wheaton for The Unlit Path Behind the House (Queen’s University Press)
Nominees: Debra Komar for Black River Road (Goose Lane Editions); Patricia Sandberg for Sun Dogs and Yellowcake (Crackingstone Press)

Thanks to Canadian Authors for supporting Canadian writers and for my nomination. Congratulations to the winners and nominees. Thrilled to be in such accomplished company!