Each year, the UNB Fredericton Reading Series brings a series of touring authors to read on-campus. Co-presented by the Canada Council for the Arts and The UNB Department of English, the first event of this academic year will take place on Thursday, Oct. 19.
According to organizer Triny Finlay, the goal of the series is to showcase a diverse group of authors every year so students studying Literature and Creative Writing, as well as members of the community, can be exposed to ideas and text by writers they might not encounter in their everyday life in Fredericton.
“It’s really exciting to have an author who [you] really love, who you’ve never seen live before, get to meet them, talk about their work and hear them read,” Finlay said.
For this year’s edition, one of her favorite poets, Liz Howard, will be presenting in March. “She is an Anishinaabe poet from Ontario and she’s fantastic—just absolutely amazing,” she said. “I teach her poetry in my workshops for third year classes and it is really exciting she’ll be coming to Fredericton and reading for us.”
Finlay said this year’s reading series will differ from previous ones by having more diversity in its line-up. For instance, Indigenous artist, writer and activist Gord Hill will be reading at the Wu Centre as part of the Peace and Friendship Treaty Conference next week.
The series will begin this Thursday at 7:30 p.m. at Carleton Hall, room 139, with readings by author and UNB Writer-in-Residence Kerry-Lee Powell. She will be reading from her short fiction collection, Willem de Kooning’s Paintbrush, which was nominated for the 2016 Scotiabank Giller Prize and shortlisted for the 2016 Rogers Writers’ Trust Fiction Prize.
Having participated in the 2014 Reading Series, Powell said reading her work at the event was an enjoyable experience and that “it’s really nice to be in an environment that is full of great writers and responsive, creative individuals.”
Her role as UNB Writer-in-Residence is to offer advice, feedback and support to UNB students and members of the Fredericton community with regard to their writing.
Next to Powell, Kayla Geitzler, a recent graduate of UNB’s Masters in Creative Writing program, will be reading from her first poetry collection, which is due out next spring. The line-up of authors for this year’s Reading Series also includes Ann Eriksson, Tony Robinson-Smith, Sue Sinclair and Nick Thran.
The Reading Series was preceded by the 14th Annual Poetry Weekend and a reading by author Marlene Creates at the Beaverbrook Art Gallery in September. The Reading Series will take place throughout the academic year and culminate in March. The event is free and open to the public.
This year’s lineup is as follows:
UNB FREDERICTON READING SERIES: 2017-18
- Kerry-Lee Powell and Kayla Geitzler
Oct. 18 (7:30 p.m., Carleton Hall, room 139)
- Gord Hill (Peace and Friendship Treaty Days Conference)
Oct. 24 (12 p.m., Wu Centre)
- Ann Eriksson
Nov. 1 (7:30 p.m., Alumni Lounge, Alumni Memorial Building)
- Tony Robinson-Smith
Nov. 15 (7:30 p.m., Alumni Lounge, Alumni Memorial Building)
- Sue Sinclair and Nick Thran
Jan. 18 (7:30 p.m., Alumni Lounge, Alumni Memorial Building)
- Soraya Peerbaye
Jan. 31 (7:30 p.m., Alumni Lounge, Alumni Memorial Building)
- Steven Heighton
Feb. 16 (7:30 p.m., Alumni Lounge, Alumni Memorial Building)
- Colleen Murphy, Anna Chatterton, and Len Falkenstein
Feb. 28 (7:30 p.m., Alumni Lounge, Alumni Memorial Building)
- Liz Howard
March 16 (7:30 p.m., Alumni Lounge, Alumni Memorial Building)