Saturday, November 2nd: 11:10 am - 12:30 pm

Character Reinvention in Fiction Writing

with Philip Huynh, Nadja Lubiw-Hazard, Casey Plett, Claire Tacon & Jessica Westhead

BSIA • Room 1-42

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Online ticket sales are closed. Limited tickets will be available at the door.
These authors grapple with issues that challenge the inhabitants of their story in unique and unforeseen ways—family secrets, anxiety, displacement, abandonment, addiction, grief, the struggle for identity. Through discussions and readings from their work, we learn how these authors navigate complex realities and find ways for their characters to reinvent themselves in the process. Moderated by Claire Tacon.
  • PHILIP HUYNH was born in Vancouver to parents who had fled Vietnam during the civil war. His stories have been published in the Malahat Review, The New QuarterlyEvent, and the Journey Prize Anthology and cited in The Best American Stories. He is the winner of the Open Season Award from the Malahat Review, a Glenna Luschei Prairie Schooner Award, and the Asian Canadian Writers’ Workshop Emerging Writers Award. His first story collection, The Forbidden Purple City, was published this year with Goose Lane Editions. A practicing lawyer, Philip lives in Richmond, BC.

  • NADJA LUBIW-HAZARD is a writer and a veterinarian. Her short fiction has been published in Room, Understorey, The Dalhousie Review, The New Quarterly and more; her first novel, The Nap-Away Motel, was published by Palimpsest Press in May 2019.  She is currently working on several picture books about animals, and a second novel, Her Name Was Friday. A life-long animal-lover and long-time vegan, her writing often explores themes related to the natural world. Nadja works at the Toronto Humane Society and lives with her wife, their two daughters, a black pug, and an old orange tabby cat. 

  • CASEY PLETT is the author of the novel Little Fish (Arsenal Pulp Press) and the short story collection A Safe Girl to Love (Topside Press), and co-editor of the anthology Meanwhile, Elsewhere: Science Fiction and Fantasy from Transgender Writers (Topside Press). She wrote a column on transitioning for McSweeney’s Internet Tendency and her essays and reviews have appeared in The New York Times, Maclean’s, The Walrus, Plenitude, the Winnipeg Free Press, and other publications. She is the winner of a Lambda Literary Award for Best Transgender Fiction and received an Honour of Distinction from The Writers’ Trust of Canada’s Dayne Ogilvie Prize for LGBTQ Emerging Writers. She lives in Windsor, Ontario.

    Photo Credit: Sybil Lamb

  • JESSICA WESTHEAD’s fiction has been shortlisted for the CBC Literary Awards, selected for the Journey Prize anthology, and nominated for a National Magazine Award. Her short stories have appeared in major literary journals in Canada, the US and the UK, including HazlittMaisonneuveIndiana Review and Hamish Hamilton’s Five Dials. She is the author of the novel Pulpy and Midge and the critically acclaimed short story collections Things Not to Do and And Also Sharks, which was a Globe and Mail Top 100 Book, a Kobo’s Best eBook of the Year and a finalist for the Danuta Gleed Literary Award. Westhead is a creative writing instructor at the Chang School of Continuing Education at Ryerson University.

    Photo Credit: Derek Wuenschirs