6 Sleeps until The Word On The Street!

September 20th, 2010

The crackles of September mean Fall leaves … and turning pages at The Word On The Street! Vancouver’s The Word On The Street is back for its 16th year with another full free day of indoor and outdoor author events, exhibits, performances, a marketplace, and all-round reading and writing excitement—Sunday, September 26 at Library Square and CBC Plaza (Homer and Hamilton Streets between Robson and Georgia).

Festival-goers will find 100+ diverse readings and acts that are all free in a lively environment that includes a marketplace with 150+ interesting book and magazine-related exhibitors.

THE AUTHORS and CANADA WRITES tents include readings by fiction and non-fiction authors such as Jack Whyte (The Forest Laird: A Tale of William Wallace), Billie Livingston (Greedy Little Eyes), Derek Lundy (Borderlands: Riding the Edge of America), Ryan Knighton (C’mon Papa: Dispatches from a Dad in the Dark), John Gould (Seven Reasons Not to Be Good), Peter Darbyshire (The Warhol Gang), and Grant Lawrence (Adventures in Solitude: What Not to Wear to a Nudist Potluck and Other Stories from Desolation Sound)—as well as talks by Robert Bateman (Bateman: New Works) and Zero Mile Diet author Carolyn Herriot, drama readings, an architecture tour, and more!

THE MAINSTAGE at Robson and Homer Street is the foot-stomping hub of the festival. The 2010 line-up includes music by The Carnival Band, Pepe Danza and The Upbeats, and Kunaka Youth Marimba. Between dance sets, comic acts David C. Jones and The Bobbers and The Sunday Service with Charlie Demers will have the crowd howling.

In the MAGAZINE LIFE TENT, Canadian magazines strut their content via panels, demonstrations, and talks—for example “Reading with Therapy Dogs” with Pet Connection Paper, “10 Simple Ways to Add Wow to Any Room” with Western Living magazine, “The Power of Picture: My Work with the Lil’wat Nation” with British Columbia Magazine’s Gary Fiegehen, and “How (NOT) to Publish a Magazine” with Sad Mag, Poetry Is Dead, Megaphone, and Lester’s Army.

For lovers of poetry, THE POETRY TENT is the place to be with a full day of readings by emerging and established talents including Gary Geddes (Swimming Ginger), Garry Gottfriedson (Skin Like Mine), Billeh Nickerson (McPoems), Ray Hsu (Cold Sleep Permanent Afternoon), and Evelyn Lau (Living Under Plastic)—as well as an hour with the World Poetry Reading Series and the launch of Poetry in Transit 2010 (with a bus on site).

THE WORD UNDER THE STREET (downstairs in the library) is both a fabulous comics and zine marketplace as well as a day of talks on related topics, e.g. “How Humour Works in Comics and Graphic Novels,” “Finding Your Queer Voice,” and “Hear Our Voices: an Anthology written by and for Aboriginal Students.”

WRITING TALKS is next door in the Peter Kaye Room and focuses on writing-based discussions around such topics as “The Changing Face of Publishing,” and a “Cultural Writing Workshop” with Ray Hsu and The Asian Canadian Writers’ Workshop as well as presentations by Robert Budd and Rodger D. Touchie based on their books, Voices of British Columbia: Stories from our Frontier and Edward S. Curtis: Above the Medicine Line (photographs and text) respectively.

And, there’s plenty for the younger set. THE KIDS, TWEENS & TEENS TENT has “Kloshe’nem: First Nations Tales from the North West Coast” with Tickle Trunk Players, a Writing Talks session on “Writing for Youth,” plus readings by Caroline Adderson, Marie-Laure Chevrier (in French), Rachelle Delaney, and more. In THE RAISE-A-READER CORNER (for ages 0-7), there’ll be storytellers, a panel on “Illustrating Children’s Books,” First Nations stories readings by Caroll Simpson and Julie Flett, and much more.

Plus, there’ll be a massive Marketplace with books, magazines, and other products for sale; The Sony Reader Lounge where readers can check out e-reading; readings from contributors to literary magazines at various venues; free writing consults by The Writer’s Studio; The Family Literacy Tent where useful information about families, literacy, and lifelong learning can be found; Aboriginal carvers on CBC Plaza; roving street performers; and, visual displays with a special skateboard exhibit by Color Magazine. The Word On The Street is truly a day where there is something for everyone!

FREE, accessible, and fun for all ages, Vancouver’s annual celebration of reading brings visitors face to face with our vibrant writing and publishing community from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on the last Sunday of September. The Word On The Street is one of Canada’s biggest annual book and magazine events with festivals taking place in Vancouver, Toronto, Kitchener, and Halifax simultaneously.

Check out www.thewordonthestreet.ca/vancouver for the most up-to-date festival information.