Membership link

Apologies! The link to “membership” in the Latest CVWS News notice which went out on March 26th is not working properly.

If you read the full post, the link to “membership” is working properly. If you have problems, go to the Contact page and select “membership” in the drop-down box.

Mid-year Workshops FREE for CVWS members!

Your North Island Writers Conference committee is pleased to announce they will be hosting a few mid-year workshop presentations via Zoom throughout 2021. These are free to CVWS members in good standing only and will focus on topics that develop skills and promote authors and their work. (If you are not sure if you have paid your membership, contact membership@cvwriterssociety.ca.)

The inaugural presentation, Poems That Whisper/Words That Explode, with Derek Hanebury, is on April 8th at 7 pm via Zoom. The hour-long interactive session will cover:

  • What makes a great poem?
  • When is a poem done?
  • What can be considered when editing?
  • Where to place line and stanza breaks?

Derek Hanebury is a Vancouver Island writer of poetry, fiction, and creative non-fiction. His first book of poetry, Nocturnal Tonglen (Ekstasis), will soon be followed by his second collection, Voluntary Blindness. He just launched a book of short stories called Both Sides Now (RCN Media) with a solo collection coming out in 2021.

His poems and stories have been published in many magazines and broadcast on CBC radio; and his first novel, Ginger Goodwin: Beyond the Forbidden Plateau (Arsenal Pulp) went to a second printing. He has a Master’s Degree in Creative Writing from UBC and taught writing at North Island College on Vancouver Island until his retirement in 2017.

Please note: CVWS members who wish to attend this workshop must R.S.V.P. to membership@cvwriterssociety.ca by April 5th, 2021.

Bringing Stories to Life! – Hosted by McLoughlin Gardens Society

Pick up your pen and join us…

The McLoughlin Gardens is pleased to announce a series of writing workshops with Jeanette Taylor and Margo McLoughlin. Jeanette is the author of several books of non-fiction, including The Quadra Story and Tidal Passages: A History of the Discovery Islands. Margo is a storyteller and writer based in Victoria. Her non-fiction, short stories, and articles have appeared in various anthologies, as well as Parabola Magazine. Jeanette and Margo share a love of local history, having worked together since the mid-1980’s, when they launched a puppet theatre program for the Museum at Campbell River. This summer program remains an enduring hit with families.

Bringing Stories to Life!
Online Writing Workshops with Jeanette Taylor and Margo McLoughlin
for writers of fiction and non-fiction
Spring and Fall, 2021

Each two-part workshop takes place over two days (90 minutes on a Saturday morning and 90 minutes on Sunday morning) and covers a specific topic. You are welcome to pick and choose which workshops you would like to attend. Follow up reading material will be provided. Registration fee is $50 per workshop.Numbers are limited to 20 participants, so please register early!


Workshop no. 1
Discovering Your Story
Saturday, March 27 and Sunday, March 28
10:00 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. Pacific
Please register by March 20, 2021

In this first workshop, for those who are new to writing or returning to their craft, we’ll review the basics, with the aim of giving the participants the confidence to launch a writing project, or return to one they have begun. Some aspects of the writing journey we’ll cover: what a story is and how a story works on the brain; generating story ideas and zeroing in on the story that is calling you; the value of free-writing and mind-mapping; how to sidestep the inner critic and get a first draft written; drafting a premise statement; planning strategies.

To register, please visit: https://www.mcloughlingardens.org/literary-arts


Workshop no. 2
Crafting a Compelling Character
Saturday, April 24 and Sunday, April 25
10:00 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. Pacific
Please register by April 17, 2021

Whether we’re inventing the character from scratch, or describing a figure from history, the use of sensory imagery and specific details makes our characters come alive. In this workshop, we’ll begin by examining some examples from current writers, asking, “Why does this character snap fully alive for you?” Writing exercises will help us find out what makes our characters tick and what the narrator’s relationship is to them.

To register, please visit: https://www.mcloughlingardens.org/literary-arts


Workshop no. 3
Scenes and Dialogue
Saturday, September 25 and Sunday, September 26
10:00 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. Pacific
Please register by September 18, 2021

Scenes are the building blocks of fiction and non-fiction alike. A well-crafted scene engages the reader’s interest, situating her in a specific time and place. It also reveals new information about the characters and how they are connected while advancing the story by creating new expectations. We’ll zero in on what makes a scene and the role of dialogue in giving it shape and purpose. Expect to have some fun reading your work out loud or hearing other read it!

To register, please visit: https://www.mcloughlingardens.org/literary-arts


Workshop no. 4
Point of View and Voice
Saturday, October 30 and Sunday, October 31
10:00 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. Pacific
Please register by October 23, 2021

Who is telling your story, and from what vantage point in time? Is the narrator trustworthy or do they have their own agenda? As we know well from our experience of sharing memories with siblings and family members, a story will change dramatically, depending on the point of view of the narrator. In this workshop, we’ll look at different options for point of view, including third person and first person. We’ll also experiment with switching points of view to find out more about the characters, their relationships, and their place in the story. We’ll discuss different approaches to discovering a unique voice to recount your tale. We’ll look at examples from contemporary Canadian writers to see what the author is doing with language to convey a particular voice in their writing.

To register, please visit: https://www.mcloughlingardens.org/literary-arts


Workshop no. 5
Falling in Love with Revision
Saturday, November 27 and Sunday, November 28
10:00 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. Pacific
Please register by November 20, 2021

When the first draft of a story or essay is complete, the exhilarating adventure of revision begins. Having other readers review your work can help but learning the skill of self-editing increases self-reliance and makes the revision more efficient and ultimately more satisfying. In this workshop, we’ll wrestle with the demon of structure and discuss various approaches to revision.

To register, please visit: https://www.mcloughlingardens.org/literary-arts

stories less spoken – March 19, 2021

stories less spoken – a podcast

CVWS member, Marlet Ashley, will have her short story, “A Day’s Work” performed by Kim June Johnson at the 2021 Woodstove Festival on March 19.

Tickets are available online through www.woodstovefestival.com. Ticket holders will be emailed the log-in information by March 19. Ticket purchase allows you to watch the 2021 Woodstove Festival films on the VIMEO platform for a period of one month.

Forgot the time!

Sorry, folks! Forgot to mention our General meeting on March 18, 2021 starts at 7 p.m.

Feel free to join us with your dessert and liqueur of choice or just plain coffee or tea!

November 2020 – Sigrid Stark

Potluck at Rabbit Hill
Memories of life with the Rabbit Hill Baptist Church Community
Sigrid Stark
Friesen Press, November 2020

Potluck at Rabbit Hill is an engaging and enjoyable read about memorable times with a beautiful community. Author Sigrid Stark was part of the church when her husband was their pastor from 1992 to 2004.

Readers will find stories that need to be told.  Stories about burning outhouses, exploding trees, and flying mice.  There are stories about people who will make the reader laugh out loud and wish that they were part of this community.  Minus the things that burn, explode and fly.

Sigrid Stark is a consummate storyteller who captures the laughter, love, and sometimes, the sadness of a compassionate community of faith.  Whether or not readers are people of faith, they will find her stories about kind people living good lives both captivating and inspirational.

About the Author
After their time at Rabbit Hill Baptist Church, Sigrid Stark and her husband, Loren, moved to Canada’s west coast.  They now live in Comox B.C. where she spends her time writing, creating art, and exploring the beauty of Vancouver Island.

Books are available directly from the author sigstarkwriter@gmail.com  and through the website www.potluckatrabbithill.com

Paperback ISBN
978-1-5255-1747-1
Black and White
174 pages
5.5 x 8.5 inches

Fall 2020 – Teresa Hedley

What’s Not Allowed? A Family Journey with Autism
Teresa Hedley
Wintertickle Press, 2020

Lauded by autism leaders and practitioners as “relatable, insightful, joyful and inspiring,” What’s Not Allowed? A Family Journey with Autism tells the tale of Erik from womb to emerging adult. Written with compassion, humour and keen observation, we are taken inside the shoes of autism and invited to link arms with the Hedley family as they nurture Erik from boy to man. Heartfelt stories highlight themes around life with autism and allow us an intriguing glimpse into the mind of autism. The tales are those of any and every family living with autism: they pose questions, poke at philosophies and offer insight into shaping potential. What’s Not Allowed? offers an uplifting approach to mining the best version of each of us—autism or not.

“There are a lot of lessons on these pages for all of us, and we can benefit from considering them and acting upon them.”
–PETER MANSBRIDGE, former anchor and chief correspondent, CBC’s The National; Stratford, ON

“Pure brilliance…Often funny, yet serious at its root, this book is a portrayal of how love and compassion overcome percentiles and projection.”
–TELAH MORRISON, Colonel, OMM, CD, Director Military Family Service, Canadian Armed Forces; Ottawa, ON,

“I highly recommend this book. Teresa is a gifted storyteller…overall a masterful blend of humour and authenticity.”
–MIKE LAKE , Canadian Parliamentarian and international autism advocate; Edmonton, AB

* What’s Not Allowed? is available online at Amazon and Indigo, at Coles in the Driftwood Mall and at Laughing Oyster Books and Blue Heron Books.