Connections with the Arts Community through the Ottawa International Writers Festival

In the Fall of 2013, I joined the board of the Ottawa International Writers Festival as a liaison between the Festival and Carleton’s Department of English Language and Literature. As a board member, I have had the opportunity to host events and to meet authors. It was in part thanks to the Festival that I was able to organize the class visits by Frances Itani and Rhonda Douglas. Because Festival events are free for Carleton students, I have encouraged students to attend events through review assignments and the opportunity to earn bonus marks for attending readings. Once I have the provisional schedule for the Fall Festival and pre‐Festival events, I try to put a work by at least one of the authors in the line‐up on the reading lists for my courses. This year, I included Jane Urquhart’s Away on the FYSM list, and Urquhart’s The Stone Carverson my ENGL 2802 and ENGL 4806 lists to coincide with her October 21st appearance at Library and Archives Canada. Students from all three courses were in attendance.