Tag Archives: International Festival of Authors

Coming soon to an Ontario town near you: IFOA

Autumn roadThe line-up at this year’s International Festival of Authors (IFOA) is an astonishing alphabet of some of the best writers of our time. In the Bs alone, we’ve got Anita Rau Badami, Russell Banks, Linwood Barclay, Peter Behrens, David Bezmozgis, and Joseph Boyden.

For readers who want to rub shoulders with the stars of the writing world–Andrew Pyper! Kathy Reichs! Peter Robinson! Johanna Skibsrud! Jane Urquhart!–the Harbourfront Centre from October 19 to 30 is the place to be.

For some people (read: me) getting to downtown Toronto during the week can be a hassle. It involves taking time off work, navigating the particulars of the GO transit system or dealing with a nerve-wracking drive and parking costs equivalent to a car payment, and spending precious time stuck behind pedestrians who walk slower than I do (grr!).

Thanks to Lit On Tour, some IFOA authors are heading out on a road show, and will be visiting Ontario towns throughout the festival. My IFOA treat this year will be IFOA Burlington.

IFOA Burlington is being presented by A Different Drummer Books and Bryan Prince Bookseller to bring Anne Enright (“The Gathering,” “The Forgotten Waltz”), Tom Perrotta (“The Leftovers,” “Little Children”) and John Burnham Schwartz (“Northwest Corner,” “Reservation Road”) to town for a lively discussion about the depiction of the family in literature. The discussion will be moderated by editor and journalist Rachel Giese, and Thom Ernst, author, critic and broadcaster (TVOntario’s “Saturday Night at the Movies”), will host the evening.

The event takes place at 7:30 pm, October 26, in the Shoreline Room at the Burlington Art Centre, 1333 Lakeshore Road, Burlington. More details, and more information about the evening’s guests, can be found here: http://www.litontour.com/events/ifoa-burlington

For those of you in other parts of Ontario, check out when IFOA authors will be dropping by: http://www.litontour.com/events-by-location


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Festivals for lovers of the written word in Ontario

A path in a foggy fall woodThis fall, Ontario writers and book-lovers should keep a weekend bag packed and ready to go for impromptu trips to any of the literary festivals happening across the province.

I just missed the Stephen Leacock Festival (thanks a lot, herniated disk—you ruined everything!), but there’s plenty more to come. Here is a sampling of some great festivals happening this fall within an easy drive of the Greater Toronto Area.

  • Eden Mills Writers’ Festival: September 17-19, 2010 (Eden Mills). Featuring a young writers’ workshop and readings from adult (Peter Robinson!), young adult (R.J. Anderson!) and children’s (Patricia Storms!) writers.

  • Words Alive Literary Festival: September 18, 2010 (Sharon). Featuring spoken word artists, poets and writers, including acclaimed author Nino Ricci.

  • Kingston WritersFest: September 22-26 (Kingston). Featured authors include Trevor Cole, Sandra Gulland, Steven Heighton, Guy Gavriel Kay and Lisa Moore. The website will be updated soon with more details.

  • The Word on the Street: September 26, 2010 (Vancouver, Kitchener, Toronto and Halifax). A national celebration of literacy and the written word.

  • International Festival of Authors: October 20-30 (Toronto). Featured authors include Sandra Birdsell, Giles Blunt, Dany Laferrière, Yann Martel, Louise Penny, Jane Urquhart and many, many more.

  • BookFest Windsor: November 4-6 (Windsor). Featuring readings by Susan Juby, Alexander MacLeod, Stuart Ross, and many others.

And of course, to learn more about cultural destinations in Ontario, check Ontario Travel.



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Writing and reading(s)

I loved reading this article in last Sunday’s Toronto Star about how writers write—or not. I enjoyed getting a glimpse of the various procrastination tactics these successful and celebrated authors employ. Some might chide me for all the ways I avoid writing—this article makes me think I’m not such a slacker after all.  There’s a whole community of procrastinating authors out there!

The article is part of a series of pieces written to promote the International Festival of Authors, taking place at the Harbourfront Centre from October 21 to 31. Authors are also venturing out into suburbia and beyond for special events in Barrie, Burlington, Don Mills, Midland, Orillia, Parry Sound and Uxbridge.

Information about the event in Burlington in partnership with a different drummer books can be found here.


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