Wordfest is once again pairing the world’s best writers and making sparks fly for our hit fall series. Every Tuesday night from Sept. 7 to Nov. 30, 2021, you’ll be able to connect with 26 of the world’s best writers in 13 electrifying online conversations. The series pass and single tickets are now on sale and include live viewings, as well as on-demand access at any time and on whatever screens you choose.
26@26, Wordfest’s electrifying 13-episode series, kicks off with two queens of groundbreaking Canadian fiction: Claire Cameron and Miriam Toews. Renowned internationally, they are also close friends who will take you deep inside their books and creative processes, in addition to sharing the big ideas, unexpected passions, and wry obsessions that galvanize them. READ MORE.
Calgary’s Marcello Di Cintio asked to be paired on the virtual stage with Palestinian-American poet, clinical psychologist, and novelist Hala Alyan in what is sure to be an unforgettable exploration of empathy. The landscapes they navigate in their work challenge us, enlighten us, and enable us to grapple with both global and personal complexities through art. READ MORE.
Topical. Penetrating. At the forefront of the most anticipated books for fall are the latest from Omar El-Akkad, whose second novel more than lives up to the high standards set by his first, and Ian Williams, whose first book of non-fiction proves that a poet’s perceptions on race make for required reading across genres. READ MORE.
A Booker Prize finalist and a wunderkind: Ruth Ozeki and Genki Ferguson have so much in common, including a growing mutual admiration club (okay, Ferguson has been perpetually in awe of Ozeki, but she generously blurbed his debut novel as leaving one “breathless, charmed, and deeply thoughtful.” What a joy it will be to eavesdrop on the intellectual and creative interaction between one of the world’s most evocative storytellers and an emerging talent. READ MORE.
When they talk about the powerhouses of Canadian publishing – and trust us, people all over the world are talking about Canadian writers in 2021 – the names Jael Richardson and Katherena Vermette are being sung out loud and proud. Bracingly original, Gutter Child and The Strangers cut like knives through our preconceptions about race, belonging, and hope. READ MORE.
We wait all year for Shelagh Rogers to grace our stage. How lucky – and truly blessed – we are to have her featured in an intimate hour-long conversation with her dear friend, Daniel Heath Justice. What will these remarkably warm facilitators talk about? Racoons, reconciliation, responsibility; our roots, our words, our actions. Don’t you feel thankful just knowing such a meeting of minds and hearts is available to us? READ MORE.
Hungry for timely? Penetrating? Provocative? Cinematic? The prescient (not to mention bitingly hilarious) Zoe Whittall delivers all of the above. Her soon-to-be announced virtual co-star is only going to amplify the rock ‘n’ roll gut punch. READ MORE.
The stars have aligned! Ever since Torrey Peters took the publishing world by storm with her debut novel Detransition Baby, everyone from Brooklyn to Berlin has been waiting for her to be in conversation with Casey Plett, whose new collection of short stories is the long-awaited follow-up to her Lambda and Amazon First Novel Award-winning Little Fish. Plett, who is adored in her native Canada, also won the Firecracker Award, and if you’ve watched the trajectory of Peters’ career, you know that adjective applies to the American supernova too. READ MORE.
Amitava Kumar’s many fans include the best living American writers, which made narrowing down who would have the honour of appearing with him very challenging. How marvelous then, that the equally charming and brilliant Jenny Offill is going to be his virtual stage mate. As much as we celebrate our homegrown talents, it’s a thrill to be able to bring you two of the finest minds and most expansive hearts creating south of the border. READ MORE.
An unexpected publishing hit about defiant, independent, kick-ass old women living their best lives. A joyful celebration of Japanese cultural traditions and body positivity for all ages. First-time graphic novelist Hiromi Goto and children’s author Kyo Maclear artfully avoid the cliches of subject matter and genre in their work and in conversation. This will be sublime. READ MORE.
Jesse Wente maintains that Reconciliation will never be a realistic path forward – storytelling in all its forms is one of Indigenous peoples’ best weapons in the fight to reclaim their rightful place. Drew Hayden Taylor called upon Indigenous writers, elders, and youth to envision a future that is jolting in the very best sense. Leave the clichés and settler comfort zones behind. Listen instead as these generous writers explore the bracing rethinks that fuel two of fall 2021’s most anticipated memoirs and anthologies. READ MORE.
Well, this is going to be the most fun: Terry Fallis and Linden MacIntyre at the top of their game, in total control of their art, in the event their avid fans have been longing for. Two of Canada’s most masterful – and beloved – storytellers on the same virtual stage, regaling us with tales of political tomfoolery, indomitable humanity, and sublime insights into the workings of our outer and inner worlds. READ MORE.
Why should the fiction writers have all the fun? 2021 marks the year of Louise Penny (okay, it’s always Louise Penny’s year), with publication of the 17th installment of the Inspector Gamache series and a thriller co-written with Hillary Clinton. And could there be a more perfectly unexpected stage mate for our beloved Louise than American chef Dorie Greenspan, whose delight in the kitchen is matched only by her ebullient persona? It’s the grand finale of 26@26, an unforgettable writerly feast. READ MORE.