Tuesday, February 20, 2018

How to Get Published, Saturday, March 3, in St. Catharines

The Neighbors by guest speaker
Hannah Mary McKinnon, coming from
MIRA books in March 2018
How to Get Published
With guests: 
HarperCollins editor Michelle Meade 
and author Hannah Mary McKinnon
Saturday, March 3, 2018
10:00 a.m. – 4:00
St. Catharines Central Library, Mills Room,  54 Church Street, St. Catharines, Ontario (Map here.)

If you've ever dreamed of becoming a published author, this workshop is for you. We’ll cover everything from getting started to getting an agent, from getting your short pieces published to finding a book publisher, from writing a query letter to writing what the publishers want. Bring your questions. Come and get ready to be published!

Special Option: Participants are invited to bring a draft of a query letter you might use to interest an agent or publisher in your book. You don’t need to bring anything, but if you do, two copies would be helpful. 

Following the end of the formal workshop at about 3:45, Brian Henry will be staying for at least half an hour and helping interested attendees who didn’t have their queries critiqued earlier write query letters that will get a yes, and you'll also get a chance to approach Michelle Meade on a one-on-one basis.

Guest speaker Michelle Meade is an assistant editor with MIRA Books, a HarperCollins imprint head-quartered in New York and Toronto. MIRA publishes novels for a broad audience. They’re eager to acquire breakout and established commercial fiction with a strong narrative drive and complex characters across a wide spectrum, from multi-layered relationship and family dramas that make for good book club picks to voicy contemporary reads, thrillers and psychological suspense, sweeping historicals, speculative novels and more.
Last year 53 MIRA titles placed on bestseller lists (New York Times, USA TODAY and Publishers Weekly) for a total of 225 weeks. MIRA publishes approximately 100 books per year in all formats.
Michelle lives for the thrill of discovering new voices in commercial fiction and helping authors produce the best books possible for their readers. She’s most interested in complex, emotional reads, especially those with high-tension, suspenseful plots and engaging, authentic characters. She’s particularly looking for emotional, character-driven novels and speculative fiction and would love to find the next Liane Moriarty and Audrey Niffenegger.
At the workshop, Michelle will speak about what she does as an editor, what catches her eye when an agent pitches a manuscript to her (and what makes her give a manuscript a pass), and will answer all your questions.

Guest speaker Hannah McKinnon is the author of Time After Time (published by HarperCollins in Britain), a novel about love, loss and second chances that’s full of humour. 
Her second and third books have been acquired by MIRA. The first of these, The Neighbors, a novel about the implosion of two families, is scheduled to be published March 13, 2018, and her third book a year later. 
When she’s not writing novels for adults, Hannah’s three boys give her plenty of material for children’s books. You can read a review of Time After Time  here
At the workshop, Hannah will be sharing what she’s learned about being a writer, finding an agent, getting published, and making a career as a novelist.

Workshop leader Brian Henry has been a book editor and creative writing instructor for more than 25 years. He publishes Quick Brown Fox, Canada’s most popular blog for writers, teaches creative writing at Ryerson University, and has led workshops everywhere from Boston to Buffalo and from Sarnia to Charlottetown. But his proudest boast is that he has helped many of his students get their first book published and launch their careers as authors. 
See reviews of Brian's classes and workshops here.

Fee: 43.36 + 13% hst = 49 paid in advance by mail or Interac
or 46.90 + 13% hst = 53 if you wait to pay at the door
To reserve a spot now, email: brianhenry@sympatico.ca
                                                              
See Brian’s complete current schedule hereincluding writing workshops and creative writing courses in Algonquin Park, Bolton, Barrie, Brampton, Burlington, Caledon, Georgetown, Guelph, Hamilton, Ingersoll, Kingston, Kitchener, London, Midland, Mississauga, Oakville, Ottawa, Peterborough, St. Catharines, Saint John, NB, Sudbury, Thessalon, Toronto, Windsor, Woodstock, Halton, Kitchener-Waterloo, Muskoka, Peel, Simcoe, York Region, the GTA, Ontario and beyond.

Monday, February 19, 2018

“Mr. Hamilton” by Jennifer M. Smith


He was hip. He wore crisp shirts and wide neckties. He had a Seventies moustache and Burt Reynolds hair. His right hand almost always held chalk. His left hand was usually in his front pocket. His Levis were so tight that to remove his hand from his pocket he had to put down the chalk, reach across his body and pinch a bit of fabric on his upper left thigh. In this way, he would pin down the interior pocket and keep it from pulling inside-out as he removed his hand. This always left a spot of chalk dust on his pants that he would carefully brush off.

Most of the class thought Mr. Hamilton was pretty cool.

“Okay stop,” he said.

He was wrapping up our Mechanical Arithmetic for the day. That’s what he called it. Every day of Grade 7 we did mechanical math; six digit numbers, four addition, four subtraction, four multiplication and three long division. We toiled the old-fashioned way with pencils and paper in this timed exercise, only ten minutes allowed. There were kids in my class who couldn’t finish in that time, but I could. I had time to spare, which I used to check my work.

“Okay, let’s mark it, pass it back,” Mr. Hamilton instructed.

We all passed our pages over our shoulders to the student sitting directly behind us in the orderly row of desks.

“Who got 12 right?” he asked when the marking was done. A number of hands went up. “Thirteen?” he queried. “Fourteen? Who got all fifteen?”

My hand shot up. He looked at me, “Figures,” he said with a note of disgust in his voice, “When don’t you get them all right?”

Chastised for a perfect score. I couldn’t understand it. I thought that was the goal. I thought parents and teachers alike would praise me for my correct answers. Not Mr. Hamilton, he didn’t like me.

In the afternoon, he handed back our Geography tests.

“Here’s something nice for a change,” he said. “There’s a new top student in the class. Congratulations Martin, you got the highest mark.”

Martin Moore, a shy pudgy kid, was stunned. I turned in my seat to look at him, diagonally behind me across the aisle.

“How does that feel, Jennifer?” Mr Hamilton asked snidely.

I caught Martin’s eye, smiled at him and gave him a thumbs up. It wasn’t a competition. Martin smiled back. I was glad to have someone on my side, someone else who was just trying to get things right.

So, it wasn’t just the marks then. When Martin scored well on a test Mr. Hamilton didn’t take a shot at him, instead he took the opportunity to take another one at me. That Mr. Hamilton, he really didn’t like me.

He liked the prettier girls well enough. I was flat-chested, short-haired and wore jeans and running shoes. I never wore a dress to school. There was Samantha with her beauty mark and her rosebud lips and Rochelle with her sparkling blue eyes, her perfect teeth and disarming dimples. At the age of twelve they both wore bras. Average at their schoolwork but above average at so much more. They were the most popular girls in the class. They were his favourites too.

When Samantha wore a dress to school Mr. Hamilton remarked cheerfully, “You look very pretty today, Sam.” He could be complimentary but I got no approval on math well done.


He liked my Mom – she helped out at the school. He liked my older sister too, despite her A grades. But then, she was more the girly-girl. She wore her long hair tied back in baubles and sometimes she wore skirts. He liked everyone else and everyone else liked him, he just didn’t like me.

Years later, on a Winter day in high school my older sister and I walked home together past our old elementary school.

“Let’s go and see if Mr. Hamilton is in,” she suggested.

“Okay,” I said, but I wasn’t so keen. I hoped he’d gone home for the day.

He hadn’t. He was there. We could see him through his classroom window at the front of the school, marking papers at his desk.

“Aha! The Smith girls!” he said with surprise as we walked in. “All grown up and in High School now! Sandra you’re looking well, what grade are you in?”

“Grade 12,” my sister responded proudly.

“And you Jennifer, you look the same,” he said giving me the once over, “Still dressing like a boy, look at you in those construction boots, why don’t you learn to dress properly?”

I’d hoped for a better reception. If I’d been unsure of my Grade Seven memories there was no denying it now.

At twelve years old, I had sensed it. He resented me because I was smart. He thought it was my job to be feminine, to be pretty. He still did. Fortunately for me, and much to his chagrin, I was smart. I was smart enough to know he was wrong.

JJennifer M. Smith has lived on the water with her husband aboard s/v Green Ghost, for thirteen of the past twenty-one years while travelling extensively by sail.  She currently lives a land-life in Burlington, Ontario, where she works to develop her creative nonfiction and memoir writing skills.
"Good ol’ 'Mr. Hamilton' was a story I wrote on a prompt in Brian's Personal Stories class. The exercise was to write about somebody who doesn’t like you/ or somebody you don’t like. Mr. Hamilton sprang to mind immediately!"

See Brian Henry’s schedule here,  including writing workshops, weekly writing classes, and weekend retreats in Algonquin Park, Bolton, Barrie, Brampton, Burlington, Caledon, Georgetown, Guelph, Hamilton, Ingersoll, Kingston, Kitchener, London, Midland, Mississauga, Oakville, Ottawa, Peterborough, St. Catharines, Saint John, NB, Sudbury, Thessalon, Toronto, Windsor, Woodstock, Halton, Kitchener-Waterloo, Muskoka, Peel, Simcoe, York Region, the GTA, Ontario and beyond.

Saturday, February 17, 2018

7 Creative Writing Courses offered this spring ~ Introductory to Intensive ~ including Writing Personal Stories & Writing Kid Lit

Welcome to Creative Writing
Nine weeks of discovering your creative side
Wednesday afternoons, 12:45 – 2:45
April 18 – June 13, 2018
Appleby United Church, 4407 Spruce Ave, Burlington, Ontario (Map here.)
This is your chance to take up writing in a warm, supportive environment. This course will open the door to writing short stories and writing dialogue, writing in first person and writing in third person, writing just for fun and writing all kinds of things. 
You’ll get a shot of inspiration every week and an assignment to keep you going till the next class. Best of all, this class will provide a zero-pressure, totally safe setting, where your words will grow and flower.
Fee: $167.26 plus 13% hst = 189
To reserve your spot, email: brianhenry@sympatico.ca

Writing Personal Stories
8 weeks of sharing and writing
Friday afternoons, 1:15 – 3:15 p.m.
April 13 – June 8, 2018 (No class June 1)
Glenview Church, Bethlehem Room
1 Glenview Ave, Toronto, Ontario (Map here)
If you've ever considered writing your personal stories, this course is for you. We’ll look at memoirs, travel writing, personal essays, family history ~ personal stories of all kinds. Plus, of course, we’ll work on creativity and writing technique and have fun doing it. 
Whether you want to write a book or just get your thoughts down on paper, this weekly course will get you going. We'll reveal the tricks and conventions of telling true stories, and we’ll show you how to use the techniques of the novel to recount actual events. Weekly writing exercises and friendly feedback from the instructor will help you move forward on this writing adventure. Whether you want to write for your family and friends or for a wider public, don't miss this course.
Fee:$159.29 plus 13% hst = $180
To reserve your spot, email: brianhenry@sympatico.ca

The Calling a YA novel by Kelley Armstrong,
a New York Times #1 bestselling author
and one of Brian's students
Writing Kid Lit ~ Picture Books to Young Adult
Thursday evenings, April 12 – June 14, 2018
7 – 9 p.m.
Appleby United Church, 4407 Spruce Ave, Burlington, Ontario (Map here.)
From picture books to young adult novels, this weekly course is accessible for beginners and meaty enough for advanced writers. Through lectures, in-class assignments, homework, and feedback on your writing, we’ll give you ins and outs of writing for younger readers and set you on course toward writing your own books. 
We’ll have two published children’s authors as guest speakers: 
Jennifer Mook-Sang grew up in Guyana and moved to Canada when she was fourteen. While reading bedtime stories to her two sons, she fell in love with picture books and decided to write one of her own. In one of Brian Henry's classes she found the beginnings of a story. That story grew into the humorous middle-grade novel Speechless, published by Scholastic in 2015. 
Speechless won the Surrey Schools Book of the Year Award, was shortlisted for many others, and was recommended by the Ontario Library Association, the Canadian Childrens’ Book Centre, the CBC, and the TD Summer Reading Club. 
Then in October 2017, Jennifer published her first picture book Captain Monty Takes the Plunge with Kids Can Press. Captain Monty is the boldest, stinkiest pirate to sail the six or seven seas; in fact, he’s never had a bath. Naturally, the Junior Library Guild immediately selected him for its fall list of recommended books. Captain Monty has also been nominated for the Rainforest of Reading Award and Jennifer will be travelling to St. Lucia for that Festival in March.
Jennifer lives in Burlington, Ontario. You can find out more about her here. 
Speechless is available online here. And Captain Monty Takes the Plunge is available here.
Kira Vermond is an award-winning writer with over 1,500 articles to her name. She has been a frequent contributor to the Globe and Mail, Chatelaine, CBC and Today's Parent.
Kira is the author of four nonfiction books for young readers: Half-Truths and Brazen Lies, (read more about Half-Truths here);  Why We Live Where We Live (more here);  Growing Up: Inside and Out, (nominated for on Ontario Library Association Forest of Reading Award) and The Secret Life of Money: A Kid's Guide to Cash (which was my son’s and daughter’s favourite book  the year it came out, although my kids are four years apart). Kira lives in Guelph, Ontario. 
Fee: $176.11 plus 13% hst = 199
To reserve your spot, email: brianhenry@sympatico.ca

The Next Step in Creative Writing
10 weeks of creative growth
Thursday afternoons, April 12 – June 14, 2018
12:30 – 2:45 p.m.
First readings emailed April 5
Woodside Branch of the Oakville Public Library, 1274 Rebecca St, Oakville, Ontario (Map here)
The Next Step in Creative Writing will challenge you to take a step up in your writing. Over the ten weeks of classes, you’ll be asked to bring in five pieces of your writing for detailed feedback. All your pieces may be from the same work, such as a novel in progress, or they may be stand alone pieces. You bring whatever you want to work on.
Besides critiquing pieces, the instructor will give short lectures at the start of class, addressing the needs of the group, and in addition to learning how to critique your own work and receiving constructive suggestions about your writing, you’ll discover that the greatest benefits come from seeing how your classmates approach and critique a piece of writing and how they write and re-write. This is a challenging course, but extremely rewarding.
Fee: 176.11 + 13% hst = 199.  
To reserve a spot now, email: brianhenry@sympatico.ca 

Intensive Creative Writing
Ten weeks towards becoming a better writer
Offered in three locations:
Friday mornings, 10:15 – 12:45April 6 – June 15
first readings emailed March 31
Glenview Church, Bethlehem Room
1 Glenview Ave, Toronto, Ontario (Map here.)
And
Wednesday evenings, 6:45 – 9:00 p.m., April 11 – June 14
first readings emailed April 4
St. Alban's Church, 537 Main Street, Georgetown, Ontario (in the village of Glen Williams – Map here.)
And
Tuesday afternoons, 12:30 – 2:45 p.m., April 10 – June 11
first readings emailed April 3
Appleby United Church, 4407 Spruce Ave, Burlington, Ontario (Map here.)
Intensive Creative Writing isn't for beginners; it's for people who have been writing for a while or who have done a course or two before and are working on their own projects. Over the ten weeks of classes, you’ll be asked to bring in five pieces of your writing for detailed feedback. All your pieces may be from the same work, such as a novel in progress, or they may be stand alone pieces. You bring whatever you want to work on. 
Besides critiquing pieces, the instructor will give short lectures addressing the needs of the group, and in addition to learning how to critique your own work and receiving constructive suggestions about your writing, you’ll discover that the greatest benefits come from seeing how your classmates approach and critique a piece of writing and how they write and re-write. This is a challenging course, but extremely rewarding.
Fee: $176.11 + 13% hst = $199
To reserve your spot, email: brianhenry@sympatico.ca

Instructor Brian Henry has been a book editor and creative writing instructor for more than 25 years. He publishes Quick Brown Fox, Canada's most popular blog for writers, teaches creative writing at Ryerson University and has led workshops everywhere from Boston to Buffalo and from Sarnia to Saint John. Brian is the author of a children’s version of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (Tribute Publishing). But his proudest boast is that he’s has helped many of his students get published. 
Read a review of Brian's various courses and workshops here (and scroll down).


See Brian’s complete current schedule here,  including writing workshops, weekly writing classes, and weekend retreats in Algonquin Park, Bolton, Barrie, Brampton, Burlington, Caledon, Georgetown, Guelph, Hamilton, Ingersoll, Kingston, Kitchener, London, Midland, Mississauga, Oakville, Ottawa, Peterborough, St. Catharines, Saint John, NB, Sudbury, Thessalon, Toronto, Windsor, Woodstock, Halton, Kitchener-Waterloo, Muskoka, Peel, Simcoe, York Region, the GTA, Ontario and beyond. 

Friday, February 16, 2018

Happy Lunar New Year!



恭禧發財

Gong Xi Fa Cai!

Gong Hey Fat Choy!

(Mandarin and Cantonese, if you're wondering,
written with the same characters in both, or so I'm told.)

Thursday, February 15, 2018

Intensive Creative Writing course, Wednesday evenings, April 11 – June 14, in Georgetown

Intensive Creative Writing
Ten weeks towards becoming a better writer
Wednesday evenings, 6:45 – 9:00 p.m.
Classes run April 11 – June 14; first readings emailed April 4, 2018
St. Alban's Church, 537 Main Street, Georgetown, Ontario (in the village of Glen Williams (Map here.)

Note: See details of all 7 courses starting this spring here.

Intensive Creative Writing isn't for beginners; it's for people who have been writing for a while or who have done a course or two before and are working on their own projects. Over the ten weeks of classes, you’ll be asked to bring in five pieces of your writing for detailed feedback. All your pieces may be from the same work, such as a novel in progress, or they may be stand alone pieces. You bring whatever you want to work on. 
Besides critiquing pieces, the instructor will give short lectures addressing the needs of the group, and in addition to learning how to critique your own work and receiving constructive suggestions about your writing, you’ll discover that the greatest benefits come from seeing how your classmates approach and critique a piece of writing and how they write and re-write. This is a challenging course, but extremely rewarding.

Instructor Brian Henry has been a book editor and creative writing instructor for more than 25 years. He publishes Quick Brown Fox, Canada's most popular blog for writers, teaches creative writing at Ryerson University and has led workshops everywhere from Boston to Buffalo and from Sarnia to Saint John. But his proudest boast is that he’s has helped many of his students get published.
Read a review of the Intensive course here. Read more reviews of Brian's classes, workshops and writing retreats here (and scroll down).

Fee: $176.11 + 13% hst = $199
To reserve your spot, email: brianhenry@sympatico.ca


See Brian’s complete current schedule here,  including writing workshops, weekly writing classes, and weekend retreats in Algonquin Park, Bolton, Barrie, Brampton, Burlington, Caledon, Georgetown, Guelph, Hamilton, Ingersoll, Kingston, Kitchener, London, Midland, Mississauga, Oakville, Ottawa, Peterborough, St. Catharines, Saint John, NB, Sudbury, Thessalon, Toronto, Windsor, Woodstock, Halton, Kitchener-Waterloo, Muskoka, Peel, Simcoe, York Region, the GTA, Ontario and beyond. 

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

“Love and Life” a Valentine’s story by Wendy Simpson


Helen had a secret. She had fully intended on keeping it completely to herself but she accidentally confided in Nancy. Damn memory! She’d forgotten that she wasn’t going to tell anyone, except the doctors of course but they already knew. And now Nancy!
       “Please keep this to yourself dear,” she’d asked so sweetly that Nancy, in shock and confusion, nodded in agreement.
       The cancer had returned. It had taken nearly 50 years to reclaim her but Helen had always known it would. It was always with her.  She hadn’t felt well for a while, at first electing to reject the young doctor’s request for scans and tests, in spite of his rather fetching smile. He insisted but she already knew. She was almost 94 years old. She wouldn’t be cured this time. But that was alright. She could live with that, or not! She laughed out loud.
       But Donald, her beloved Donald, this news would shatter him. She had to make Nancy understand that Donald must not be told of this new diagnosis.
       “But Helen, we have to tell Don. He needs to know!” said Nancy.
       Helen settled into her favourite chair, the one they still called the new chair even though it was almost 30 years old. They’d brought it with them from the house, for comfort and familiarity. It still seemed new. After all, they’d been married 75 years and most of the furniture they’d bought for the first house was old and long gone.  
       They were so young the first time she was sick, so unprepared for the ravages of cancer. But Donald was wonderful. He was so kind and patient. So committed. Driving to appointments, cooking, cleaning and caring for her. He was so gentle and tender, helping her dress and bathe, brushing out her hair so gently. She could still feel his soft caresses as he explored her newly mutilated body. He loved her. She never doubted this. Her whole life she knew she was lucky to be loved by Donald. 
     Now, she couldn’t put him through that again. He was 95, healthy but too old. Oh sure, they could hire a nurse, a driver, any help they needed. They had the money. The Home could easily make the arrangements. But still, Donald would worry and fret. It would break his heart to know.
       “So Nancy, I’m sorry it slipped out but please, please, please promise you won’t tell Donald that I’m sick. Please?”
        Nancy was sad and upset. She loved Helen and Donald. They meant so much to her. Her parents had chosen well when they’d asked the couple to be Godparents to their second little girl. Helen and Donald had always been kind and generous, hosting elaborate birthday dinners each year for Nancy. They’d always served her bubbly drinks in tall stemmed glasses, complete with a sweet red cherry and made magical birthday cakes with thick fluffy white icing and shiny coins hidden inside amongst the chocolate and caramel bits. They’d served shrimp cocktails and Caesar salad, delicacies in Nancy’s meat and boiled potatoes world. 
     Her older sister had been jealous. There was always a wonderful exotic present brought back from trips to places she didn’t know; a stuffed bear from Russia, a tortoise shell hair comb from Spain, a doll from Cuba. And a globe one year so Nancy could figure out where they went. They had no children of their own. Nancy firmly believed they had chosen this because they had her! But this was a misconception. One day, when Nancy was married and had children of her own Helen had simply stated that they hadn’t been blessed with children. How sad.
       Nancy watched them as they grew old. She lost touch for a while, consumed by children, work and everyday life. When she reached out they were still there, always happy to see her. After her own parents died, they’d become even more important. Her own marriage ended but still Donald and Helen were in love. They’d been retired for so long, spending each and every day together and yet Nancy had never heard them complain about the other. They poked fun or feigned exasperation but spent each day worrying more about their better half than themselves. And they laughed and smiled and talked to each other and listened as if it was all that mattered.
       Helen was the strong one, the organizer, the planner. She kept track of appointments, bridge games, birthdays and anniversaries.
       “Helen tells me where to be and I show up,” Don said, always with a chuckle. He was so handsome, like a movie star according to Helen.


       Nancy was bewildered, confused by the rush of emotions.  She loved them both so much. How could Helen keep this from Don? How could Nancy? Didn’t he have the right to know? She understood Helen’s desire to protect Don but they’d always been a team. Together they’d sold their house and moved into a retirement home, not wanting to leave the other behind to sort through the memories and effects of a lifetime together. For similar reasons they made plans and practical decisions for their passing, a word Helen always said in a whisper as if fearing speaking it aloud would place a direct call to the Pearly Gates. They’d done the hard tasks together but now Helen had made a decision that was hers alone.
       Nancy deliberated, thinking through the sleepless nights. Don was old but not fragile. He still drove, not well but thankfully they lived in a very small town. As far as Nancy knew he hadn’t done too much damage. Oh, except for the outdoor garden lights at her sister’s cottage this summer when he backed out of the driveway in his new Lexus, oblivious to the crunching metal and plastic. Nancy remembered when Helen had called last year to tell her they’d finally retired the old Pontiac.
       ‘We bought a fancy one. This might be our last new car,” she’d said without a hint of irony.
       Over the next few days Nancy tried to reason with Helen. They went for walks, slower now but Helen was still spry having no trouble walking along her favourite boardwalk by the lake. Nancy tried to make her see that the secret could not be kept. She would grow weaker.
       “No,” she insisted. “It will be fast.”
       How did she know that? “But telling Don now makes more sense,” Nancy persisted over tea and scones at the local bakery. “You could spend time together, reminisce, say goodbye. Wouldn’t that be better than the shock and grief when it’s too late?”
        Helen smiled and nodded but never wavered.         
       Just before Christmas Helen developed a cough. Nothing serious she assured Don. No need to worry. Nancy stopped by with groceries and Don’s favourite scotch. She brought Buckleys which Helen sniffed and refused to swallow. After dinner Helen went to bed, unusually early. Don would join her after the news.
       Nancy decided.
       “Don?” She started slowly, still uncertain, gathering her thoughts and her courage, tears welling in her eyes.
       “I know,” said Donald. And he sank slowly into the new chair.

Wendy Simpson lives and sells real estate in Oakville. Although her university days are long behind her she’s never lost her love of reading. She is the mother of three adult children and three (soon to be four!) grandchildren. She travels as much as possible and loves to spend several weeks each year in Victoria and the Cayman Islands.

See Brian Henry’s schedule here,  including writing workshops and weekly creative writing courses, and writing retreats in Algonquin Park, Bolton, Barrie, Brampton, Burlington, Caledon, Georgetown, Guelph, Hamilton, Ingersoll, Kingston, Kitchener, London, Midland, Mississauga, Oakville, Ottawa, Peterborough, St. Catharines, Saint John, NB, Sudbury, Thessalon, Toronto, Windsor, Woodstock, Halton, Kitchener-Waterloo, Muskoka, Peel, Simcoe, York Region, the GTA, Ontario and beyond.