Fred Wah

Fred Wah

Fred Wah explores lure of the local at Nelson library

Fred Wah is a former poet laureate of Canada and will be writer in residence at this year's Elephant Mountain Literary Festival.

The Lure of the Local is the theme for a special reading by accomplished author and former Parliamentary Poet Laureate Fred Wah on Thursday, July 2 at 7 p.m. at the Nelson Public Library.

Reading from a range of his writing that focuses on place, Wah’s selection of prose and poetry will acknowledge “my connection with ways in which the Kootenay landscape feeds the imagination,” he says.

Wah is the author of more than 20 books of poetry and prose. He’s won the Governor-General’s Award for Poetry and the Howard O’Hagan Award for short fiction for his literary memoir The Diamond Grill, about his Nelson childhood, to name just two awards. He’s currently working on a place-based project about the Columbia River.

Wah will read from a number of works, including his 2008 book Loki is Buried at Smoky Creek.

“Writing has a lot to do with ‘place,’ the spiritual and spatial localities of the writer. I see things from where I am, my viewpoint, and I measure and imagine a world from there,” he writes.

The free reading is also a kick-off to Wah’s workshop with Elephant Mountain Literary Festival as writer-in-residence. The workshop, called Every Where, is for any writer with a landscape-oriented writing project looking for ways to develop it. The workshop runs Monday, July 6 to Thursday, July 9 from 10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.; registration fee is $180.

Elephant Mountain Literary Festival runs July 10 to 12 and features panel discussions, special events and special guests, including Marina Endicott, Kate Pullinger, and Bob Bossin. Festival information and course registration are available at emlfestival.com.

All library events are free, but donations towards programming are always gratefully accepted.