Vancouver Writers Fest includes Tomson Highway, Esi Edugyan, Miriam Toews, and guest curator Lawrence Hill

In-person, hybrid, and online events will be offered from October 18 to 24

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      For Vancouver book lovers, October just might be their favourite time of the year.

      Not only is that when many fall releases become available, it's also when the Vancouver Writers Fest takes place.

      Today, the festival announced its lineup of in-person, hybrid, and online events from October 18 to 24. And it includes many celebrated authors.

      Among them are Miriam Toews, Jesse Wente, Esi Edugyan, Katherena Vermette, André Alexis, Omar El Akkad, Ann Goldstein, Lauren Groff, Zoe Whittall, Tomson Highway, Anthony Doerr, Susan Orlean, and Jeff VanderMeer.

      Highway, also a playwright and pianist, will discuss his new memoir, Permanent Astonishment. His first language is Cree and in 2001, Maclean's included him on its list of the 100 most important people in Canadian history.

      Edugyan, a two-time winner of the Scotiabank Giller Prize, will speak about her 2021 Massey Lectures, entitled Out of the Sun, which took a deep dive into art and race.

      Toews, a two-time winner of the Rogers Writers' Trust Fiction Prize, is out with a new book, Fight Night. It's an intergenerational tale told through a character named Swiv, a nine-year-old in Toronto with a pregnant mother and a wise and loving grandmother. 

      “In a year when our worlds became so small, and doorways closed, it was through art, music, and books that many of us found new pathways," Vancouver Writers Fest artistic director Leslie Hurtig said in a news release announcing this year's lineup. "Now, we invite you to join us on Granville Island, and from your homes, as we present the works of over 115 extraordinary authors."

      Guest curator Lawrence Hill, author of The Book of Negroes and The Illegal, will showcase Black and Indigenous authors.

      He's moderating a discussion with Cherie Jones and Myriam Chancy about Caribbean literature. In addition, Hill will interview Dorothy Livesay Poetry Prize–winning poet Chantal Gibson, who has a new collection, with/holding, and he's programmed events with Lisa Bird-Wilson and Katherena Vermette, among others. 

      Theatre event tickets are $25 apart from the pay-what-you-can discussions at the Nest. The Literary Cabaret and Afternoon Tea events are $45, whereas digital events are being offered on a pay-what-you-can basis.

      The Vancouver Writers Fest has a Digital Festival Pass for $100, offering access to every digital-only event.

      This year's Literary Cafe features Mona Awad, Gary Barwin, Christa Couture, Marcello DiCitio, Omar El Akkad, and Darrel McLeod.

      The Afternoon Tea event includes Myriam Chancey, Linden MacIntyre, Casey Plett, Jael Richardson, Ian Williams, and Zoe Whittall.

      Both will take place in-person at Performance Works on Granville Island.

      Under Hurtig's direction in recent years, the Vancouver Writers Fest has ramped up its youth-education programming. This year is no exception as there are 15 events for students from kindergarten to Grade 12 in the Writers in the Classroom program.

      Participating authors include George Elliott Clarke, Wab Kinew, Adam Sol, and Uzma Jalaluddin. In addition to being a bestselling author, Kinew is leader of the Manitoba New Democratic Party.

      For more information on authors at the Vancouver Writers Fest, visit the website.