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Readings part of Writers Festival lineup

Literary luminaries coming to town

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This year’s Whistler Writers Festival is not just for writers, offering several events extending to readers and the literary public.

The festival kicks off tonight (Thursday, Sept. 8) with a reading event at Millennium Place featuring Canadian authors Charles Montgomery and Susan Musgrave, the keynote presenter.

Montgomgery is the author of the award-winning non-fiction work The Last Heathen — Encounters with Ghosts and Ancestors in Melanesia , which documents his journey to the South Pacific archipelago where his great-grandfather had served as an Anglican missionary in the late 1800s. In the book Montgomery encounters a host of sorcerers, gun-toting rebels and pagan prophets as he explores the area’s deep-rooted magic and myth with an approach and insight that is winning him comparisons to internationally acclaimed Canadian ethno-botanist Wade Davis. A noted photojournalist, Montgomery will be sharing his slides, as well as stories, with the festival audience at Millennium Place.

The opening night event caps off with a visit from Canlit’s bona fide bad girl Susan Musgrave, who will be using the occasion to launch her latest book – a collection of essays titled ‘You’re In Canada Now, Motherfucker.’

Over the years acquiring such titular descriptions as "enfant terrible," "femme fatale," and "voice of anarchist adolescent girls," the brutally honest author and poet currently has over 25 books to her name, her first a volume of poetry published when she was all of 19 years old.

Possessor of a colourful past that includes dropping out of school at 14 years old, a convicted bank robber husband and years consorting with Latin American drug runners, Musgrave currently resides on the Northwest Coast where she continues to raise hell through her writing, as is evident in the unprintable title of her latest work.

Tickets to see Montgomery and Musgrave are available at Millennium Place for $9.99. The event begins at 8 p.m. and doubles as a celebration for International Literacy Day.

The festival’s next reading event takes place the evening of Sunday, Sept. 11 at the Spruce Grove Field House. On the roster are Vancouver-based author, screenwriter and creative writing instructor Caroline Adderson and Brian Kaufman, founder and editor in chief of the literary magazine subTerrain.

The night’s readings will kick off at 8 p.m. with the Whistler Writers Group hosting a potluck dinner beginning at 6:30 p.m. Tickets will be available at the venue.

The festival’s final reading event takes place the evening of Monday, Sept. 12 at Millennium Place, and features author Howard White, president and publisher of Harbour Publishing and editor of the Raincoast Chronicles. The event begins at 8 p.m. with tickets available at the venue for $9.99.

In addition to the readings series, the festival is presenting a series of lectures, many of which are open for drop-in registration.

The Whistler Writers Festival is presented by the Whistler Writers Group, a four-year-old organization also known by its tongue in cheek moniker "The Vicious Circle."

For a complete schedule of events go to www.theviciouscircle.ca.

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