North Shore Writers Festival

Where readers and writers meet

2018 Lineup


Pat Carney

In April of 2017, Pat Carney’s On Island: Life Among the Coast Dwellers debuted at #15 on the BC Bestsellers List and quickly made its way to #1. For the past 44 weeks it has occupied a spot on that list, and spent 36 weeks in the top five.*

Well-known across Canada for her illustrious political career, Pat Carney is a former Member of Parliament, senior cabinet minister, and senator. She was the first woman appointed as Minister of Energy, Mines and Resources, Minister of International Trade, and President of Treasury Board in the cabinet of Prime Minister Brian Mulroney. She has worked tirelessly to protect and preserve Canada’s lighthouses and maritime history, and has been an advocate for arthritis research in Canada for more than two decades.

But in her life before politics, Carney was a prize winning journalist. Writing for the Province, the Vancouver Sun, and various national and international newspapers including the New York Times, hers was a familiar byline for more than twenty years, and since her retirement from politics in 2008, she has returned to her lifelong passion for writing. In her debut short story collection, On Island, Carney follows the rhythms of day-to-day life in coastal bc by featuring a revolving cast of archetypal small-community characters. Her witty and perceptive voice describes how the islanders weather the storms of coastal life while navigating everyday dramas.

Drawing from her observations of the personalities and problems she’s encountered over five decades of living on island, Carney simultaneously evokes the romantic landscape of the British Columbia coast and addresses the less-idyllic moments: power outages, winter storms, and isolation.

*Based on data from the Association of Book Publishers of British Columbia


William Deverell

While working his way through two degrees at the University of Saskatchewan, Bill Deverell was a journalist for seven years, graduating in law in 1963. He was a member of the bars of British Columbia, Alberta, and the Yukon, his criminal practice involved work for both prosecution and defence, and he worked in civil rights, labour, and environmental law. He is a founding director, former president, now honourary director of the B. C. Civil Liberties Association.

His first novel, Needles, won the $50,000 Seal Prize in l979 and the Book of the Year Award in l98l.  His subsequent novels include High Crimes, Mecca, The Dance of Shiva, Platinum Blues, Mindfield, Kill All the Lawyers, Street Legal, Trial of Passion, Slander, The Laughing Falcon, Mind Games, April Fool, Kill All the Judges, Snow Job, I’ll See You in My Dreams, Sing a Worried Song, and, his latest, Whipped. He is author of the true crime book A Life on Trial – the Case of Robert Frisbee, based on a celebrated murder trial which he defended. His novels have been translated into fourteen languages and sold worldwide. All but two continue in print.

Trial of Passion  won the 1997 Dashiell Hammett award, for literary excellence in crime writing in North America, as well as the Arthur Ellis prize in crime writing in Canada. It featured the classically trained, self-doubting Arthur Beauchamp, a trial lawyer who became Deverell’s first series protagonist, in April Fool (also an Ellis winner), Kill All the Judges (shortlisted for the Stephen Leacock Prize in humour), and Snow Job, a political novel set in Ottawa, which has been similarly shortlisted. He has been referred to as a national Treasurer by the Toronto Star and received the Best Canadian Crime Writer award at the Scene of the Crime Festival in Ontario. In October, 2011, he was awarded an honourary doctor of letters from Simon Fraser University.

He wrote the screenplay “Shellgame” for CBC-TV drama, which served as the pilot for CBC’s long-running series “Street Legal”, and he is the creator of that series, which has run internationally in more than 50 countries. In 1991-92, he served as Visiting Professor in the Creative Writing Department, University of Victoria. In 1994 he served as Chair of the Writers’ Union of Canada, and again in 1999. He lives on Pender Island, British Columbia, and in Costa Rica.


Timothy Taylor

Timothy Taylor is a Canadian novelist, journalist and creative writing professor.

Unlike many such profs, Taylor didn’t start out in the creative writing field. Look for the blog post “NYC vs. MFA vs. MBA vs. RCN”. Yes, that’s right, he studied economics and business while serving as an officer in the Canadian Naval Reserves first with HMCS Nonsuch and later with HMCS Cataraqui. He has an MBA from the Queens University’s Smith School of Business and a BA Economics from the University of Alberta. He spent time with the Toronto Dominion bank and later as a management consultant before becoming a freelance journalist and novelist in the late 1990s. In 2013 Taylor took a position with the UBC Creative Writing Program where is now an Associate Professor with tenure.

Taylor’s first novel Stanley Park was published in 2001. It was an immediate bestseller and a critical success. He’s since published a prize-winning collection of short fiction, Silent Cruise, and two further bestselling and critically acclaimed novels, Story House and The Blue Light Project, which was award the CBC Bookie Award in the literary fiction category. He is also the winner of the Journey Prize, and has been finalist or runner-up for six other major national fiction prizes in Canada, including the prestigious Giller Prize. His work has also been chosen as the ‘One Book One City’ selection for Vancouver and named a finalist for Canada Reads.

Taylor’s most recent nonfiction title is Foodville, a tongue-in-cheek account of his life as a food writer and self-identified non-foodie who is nevertheless a passionate eater. And his newest book, with Doubleday Canada, is the novel The Rule of Stephens.

Taylor has also been widely published and recognized for his non-fiction magazine and newspaper work. He wrote ‘The Explainer’ column for BC Business Magazine and was previously the Big Ideas columnist for the Globe and Mail’s Report on Business Magazine. He has been winner or finalist in over twenty separate magazine awards, including numerous nominations and medals for National and Western Magazine Awards in Canada.

Taylor has been a contributing editor at Vancouver Magazine and a regular contributor at EnRoute Magazine, Walrus, and Eighteen Bridges. He has also written for Institutional Investor, The Wall Street Journal, Food & Wine, Cooking Light, Western Living, The Vancouver Review, Toro Magazine, Saturday Night, Adbusters, the National Post, the Vancouver Sun and many others.



Bernice Lever

Bernice Lever is a professional editor, educator, poet and activist. She has read her work on 5 continents, published 10 books of poetry, the most recent being “Small Acts”, and is now working on book #11. Bernice is an active member of local and national writing organizations, as she gets inspiration and friendship from worldwide writers, and is a determined Peace Poet.

Sonia Garrett

Sonia Garrett is a mom, Montessori teacher, storyteller, and writer. She lives in the gentle chaos of books, film and outdoor paraphernalia, cooking ingredients and gardening equipment in her adopted home of Deep Cove. Her debut middle-grade reader, “Maddie Makes a Movie” is released this year. It is a must for young readers with big ideas.

Sanford Osler

Historian, avid outdoorsman and past Chair of the North Vancouver Museum and Archives, Sanford Osler’s lifelong interest in the canoe culminated in his book Canoe Crossings: Understand the Craft that Helped Shape British Columbia.  With warmth and wit, he writes about the length, width and depth of the relationship people in British Columbia have had with various types of paddlecraft.


Grant Lawrence

Grant Lawrence has long been a leading voice in Canadian arts and entertainment. He is a host on CBC’s Radio 3, and a frequent columnist on CBC Radio One. In 2014 he won a Canadian Screen Award for his work with CBC Music presents: The Beetle Roadtrip Session. Lawrence is the author of three bestselling and award-winning books, Adventures in Solitude, The Lonely End of the Rink: Confessions of a Reluctant Goalie and Dirty Windshields: The Best and Worst of the Smugglers Tour Diaries. 


JJ Lee

JJ Lee hosted this summer’s CBC Radio One program, Head to Toe. He writes about menswear for the National Post and writes essays for the fashion magazine, ELLE Canada. He wrote the critically-acclaimed memoir, The Measure of a Man: The Story of a Father, a Son, and a Suit, which was a finalist for the Governor-General’s Literary Prize for Nonfiction in 2011.


3 thoughts on “2018 Lineup

  1. Pingback: THE RUBBER FENCE's Book Cover Wins Gold Star

  2. Pingback: Spring 2017 Readings | Brooklyn Arts Press

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s