Canada has a well-established reputation for birthing talented and internationally acclaimed writers. Some of them include ‘Life of Pi’ by Yann Martel, ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ by Margaret Atwood, ‘The Book of Negroes’ by Lawrence Hill, and ‘Anne of Green Gables’ by L.M. Montgomery. All of these have become successful films and television series.
Literary culture is taken very seriously in Canada. It makes the quality of talent that comes out of Canada no surprise. In almost every city, there is a public library with free access. All you require is a library card, which is also free, to gain access to the thousands of books and other resources available at the libraries.
For those looking for activities beyond the books, festivals are where it’s at. There are many literary festivals celebrated at different times of the year. From gorgeous Vancouver to the busy streets of Toronto, you’ll find a literary festival to add to your bucket list. You can meet your favorite writers, hear them speak about their work, and enjoy workshops, galas, and performances. The Writer’s Union of Canada has a comprehensive list of festivals across Canada. Here’s a highlight of some of the major literary festivals you must check out:
The Word On The Street
This festival is a national celebration of reading, writing, and literacy. It is free to attend, caters to readers of all ages, and is held year-round with various events in Toronto, Halifax, Saskatoon, and Lethbridge.
Toronto International Festival of Authors
TIFA is Canada’s longest-running literary festival held every year in September, usually right after the Toronto International Film Festival. Over a span of 11 days, there are over 200 activities audiences of all ages can indulge in. Tickets are required to attend.
Vancouver International Writers Festival
This week-long event takes place usually in the Fall, particularly in October. The festival encourages readers of all ages to delve into the world of storytelling. By visiting the cultural hub of Granville Island and other venues, visitors to the festival get to interact with both local and international authors. Although it is not a free event, it is worth the trip.
The Frye Festival
The Frye Festival happens in Atlantic Canada. It is the biggest literary festival in that region and is proudly bilingual. Every year, at the end of April, many events are hosted over ten days. The primary goal of the Frye Festival is to foster a vibrant culture of reading and writing and to make it accessible.
Ediri is a multidisciplinary creative who enjoys storytelling through various mediums. She is passionate about writing, photography, and music. When she’s not at school, you will find her creating content for her blog, dancing, or reading an African novel