Dave Williamson National Short Story Competition Shortlist

Our 7 short-listers (in alphabetical order according to author’s last name): Winners will be announced May 11th at a hybrid reception! Note: From the first set of readings by our preliminary judges to the final reading of our lead judges, the Guild followed the process of blind-judging. The only information … Read more

Book Chat with Gabriele Goldstone

On April 12 at 7 pm, please join us for the next of our virtual Book Chat series with our featured author, Gabriele Goldstone. To receive the Zoom info, please email MWGEvents2022@gmail.com.

Spurred on by a mixture of shame and curiosity—and inspired by her childhood book heroine, Nancy Drew—Gabriele Goldstone writes the books she wishes she could have read while growing up with European, post-war immigrant parents.

Her two most recent YA novels, Crow Stone (2022) and Tainted Amber (2021), set in Eastern Europe—act as bookends to the Second World War—the perfection-seeking before and the chaotic-after.

Dave Williamson National Short Story Longlist Announced

The longlist for the inaugural Dave Williamson National Short Story Competition has been announced! Our 13 longlisters (in alphabetical order according to author’s last name): Bicycle Pete. Donna Besel. Lac du Bonnet, MBReturn to Chrysalis. Bruce Cinnamon. Edmonton, ABSketches. Gaylene Dutchyshen. Gilbert Plains, MBLegend of the Magpie: An Original Métis … Read more

The Search for Meaning at Scott Ellis’s Book Launch

group photo at Scott Ellis’s Book Launch

Artspace, March 11, 2023 | Sharon Hamilton “There’s so much meaning in everything…It clashes and bounces about. It’s hard to handle.” These words sum up Scott Ellis’s search for meaning in the universe he lives in and the universe he creates in his stories. Almost 40 enthusiastic participants crowded into … Read more

Exploring Elements of Fiction: Influential Author Series

Manitoba Writers’ Guild partners with Creative Manitoba for group mentorship program. Ainsley McPhail with Andrew Dutfield and Carrie Hatland Ainsley McPhail with Carrie Hatland Ainsley McPhail with Michael Redhead Champagne Ainsley McPhail with Michael Hutchinson

Book Chats

Our first Book Chat of 2023 will take place on February 8th at 7 pm. Our featured author will be Méira Cook. To receive the Zoom instructions to join us, email us at MWGEvents2022@gmail.com.

Méira is the award-winning author of the novels ‘Once More With Feeling’; ‘The House on Sugarbush Road’, which won the McNally Robinson Book of the Year Award; and ‘Nightwatching’, which won the Margaret Laurence Award for Fiction. She has also published five poetry collections, most recently ‘Monologue Dogs’, which was shortlisted for the 2016 Lansdowne Prize for Poetry and for the 2016 McNally Robinson Book of the Year Award. She has won the CBC Poetry Prize and the inaugural Walrus Poetry Prize. She has served as Writer in Residence at the University of Manitoba’s Centre for Creative Writing and Oral Culture, and the Winnipeg Public Library. Born and raised in Johannesburg, South Africa, she now lives in Winnipeg.

Margaret Laurence Award winner, ‘The Full Catastrophe’ is a compassionate and funny novel about defining yourself, the communities that support us, and the journeys that secrets propel.

Charlie Minkoff, a thirteen-year-old boy born with intersex traits, would be happy to be left alone. Living with his artist mother in a derelict loft in downtown Winnipeg, perpetually wondering about the father who abandoned him, and tormented in school because of his differences, Charlie navigates the assorted catastrophes of his life. He’s helped along by the love of his beloved grandfather, Oscar, and the makeshift family who surround him: his mother’s best friend; a couple of elderly shut-in neighbours; a mysterious girl in his class who has secrets of her own; and his desperately needy and perpetually hungry dog, Gellman.

When a school project leads him to discover that Oscar never had a bar mitzvah, Charlie decides to right the historical wrong and arrange a belated ceremony. But this quest will be more than he bargained for, and meanwhile everyone from his doctor to his Ancestry Studies teacher keeps insisting that Charlie needs to learn to tell his own story. 

Self- Publishing Basics – from page to book

Are you thinking about self-publishing your novel but have no idea what steps to take? Join Dennis Valdron as he walks you through the steps* in his workshop series.

In this exciting new 7-week hybrid program (in-person & online), he will discuss how to get an ISBN number (and why you need one!), the choices of companies that self-publish and their formats, cover designing, what the tax implications are, how to upload and requisition print books, how to read those sales reports, requisitions and other functions to keep track of your e-books.

The final class will be your Book Launch at ArtSpace, where you can bring your book, introduce it and sell it to those in attendance.

*Keep in mind, you should bring a fully edited version of the book you want to have published in order to have a book polished enough to interest readers by the end of the 7 weeks. However, even if your manuscript isn’t ready to publish within the 7 weeks, you will still have the know-how and can come out on the 7th class to support your fellow writers.

About your instructor:

Dennis Valdron is a speculative fiction writer, pop-culture essayist and aboriginal rights lawyer, living and working in Winnipeg, Manitoba. As a writer, his short stories have been published in magazines and anthologies in North America, Britain, Australia and Russia.  He has several collections of speculative fiction and horror stories and novels. He’s also published extensive nonfiction about Canadian Sci Fi – LEXX and Starlost, Cult television and movies, including Doctor Who, and topics as diverse as writing, publishing, self publishing, 1930’s pulps, Lovecraft, Burroughs, Godzilla and nerd culture. His website and blog are at denvaldron.com.

Classes begin on Sunday, February 5th at 1 pm (CST) and each subsequent Sunday until the Book Launch, which will take place on Sunday, March 19th and will include refreshments. Email the Manitoba Writers’ Guild at manitobawritersguild3@gmail.com for more info. Registration will be through EventBrite (https://www.eventbrite.ca/e/self-publishing-basics-tickets-411520979327 )

Accepting submissions to the SOMP

It’s that time of year again when we are looking for applicants to our Sheldon Oberman Mentorship Program. Those interested in applying please read the requirements here. The deadline for submissions by both Mentors and Apprentices is November 30, 2022. This year we can accept TWO Mentor/Apprentice pairs! We have … Read more

New MWG Writing Contest

It’s a Wrap – A Christmas Themed Short Story Contest

It might be fall, but we all know how the holidays sneak up on us, so we made that sneaky habit of the holiday season the theme of this new short story contest!

There’s only one rule: Your story needs to be centered around getting ready for the Holiday season. And yes; ALL winter-themed celebrations are welcome in this contest, whether it be a based on something in your own life, or something entirely original.

So, grab a pen or laptop and get your creative juices flowing! And, as always, we look forward to seeing what you come up with.

Good luck!

Submission Guidelines

• Short story must be 2,500-7,000 words
• Please include page numbers in the upper right corner of your document.
• Do not include your name on any page of your manuscript. Only the story title.
• Please include a cover letter on a separate sheet that includes your name, home and email addresses, telephone number, story title and word count. Please specify if you’re a Guild member, non-member, or member of another Guild out of province (on the same sheet as the cover letter).
• We are accepting only email submissions for this contest. Please make sure your file is sent as a PDF, Word (.doc or .docx) or plain text Document (.txt).
• Send submissions to manitobawritersguild3@gmail.com

Deadline: December 10th, 2021

Prizes: Your story published in our newsletter
A McNally Robinson Gift card ($50)

Honouring our Manitoba Book Awards recipients

Without our usual gala, we were unable to suitably honour those who won awards during this year’s Manitoba Book Awards season. The Manitoba Writers’ Guild works as a team member of a coalition of organizations that coordinate the Awards, along with the Association of Book Publishers (AMBP), the Winnipeg International Writers Festival (WIWF) and the Winnipeg Libraries Association. The coalition organizes the submission process, finds jurors for each of the categories and organizes meetings with those jurors to determine our winners. Then, we usually plan a party where we can invite those on the shortlist, their families, friends and publishers to learn who the winners are and celebrate all the wonderful writers, book publishers and designers in Manitoba. Unfortunately, with the dreaded virus isolating all of us during the time when we usually hold the gala, we were unable to indulge in such an event this year.

Instead, the Guild has invited as many of the winners as we could find to be a part of our monthly virtual Book Chats, the first Wednesday of each month at 7 pm. The one exception will be Colleen Nelson, winner of the McNally Robinson Book for Young People Award (Older Category) for her middle grade novel, Harvey Holds His Own. We invited her to our Kids Book Chat on Saturday, September 11 at 2 pm so gather your kids and grandkids to the nearest computer, laptop, tablet or even your cell phone, to listen to Colleen and ask questions of this talented local author.

As for our evening virtual Book Chats, we invite anyone interested in hearing our authors read a portion of their award winning books to join us at any of the chats. Please note that you must email the Guild ahead of each chat for the Zoom information that will allow you to join the meeting.

On July 14, 2021, David A. Robertson read from his award winning book, Black Water, which won both the Alexander Kennedy Isbister Award for Non-Fiction and the Carol Shields Winnipeg Book Award. It was a thought-provoking evening with discussions on reconciliation and residential schools.

Here is a list of the other award winners, the awards they won and when their chats will be:

August 11, 2021 – Jonathan Ball‘s The Lightning of Possible Storms won the Margaret Laurence Award for Fiction

September 8, 2021 – Magdalene Redekop‘s Making Believe: Questions About Mennonites and Art won the Mary Scorer Award for Best Book by a Manitoba Publisher

October 13, 2021 – Duncan Mecredi & Lenard Monkman both won the Manitowapow Award for their work in literacy among the Indigenous  Community

November 10, 2021 – Andrew Unger’s Once Removed won the Eileen McTavish Sykes Award for Best First Book

December 8, 2021 – Lara Rae’s play Dragonfly won the Chris Johnson Award for Best Play by a Manitoba Playwright

January 9, 2022 – Amber O’Reilly’s poetry book, Gagnant – Boussole Franche, won Le Prix  littéraire Rue-Deschambault

We are also planning an informative evening with the company Relish Design, which won most of the design awards in the Manuela Diaz Book Design and Illustration Awards category. It should be very interesting to see how their designers come up with the graphics for book covers and illustrations. Stay tuned for the date and time, which will be announced here and on our Facebook Events page.

As mentioned above, please email manitobawritersguild3@gmail.com to receive the Zoom instructions or if you have any questions. If you want to read more about these writers, they will be featured in upcoming e-newsletters, but you must be a member to get it. Check out our Member page to learn how to become a member.

2021 Manitoba Book Awards Winners!

We, at the Manitoba Writers’ Guild, are pleased to announce this year’s winners of the Manitoba Book Awards / Les Prix du livre du Manitoba 2021 Winners List   Alexander Kennedy Isbister Award for Non-Fiction / Prix Alexander-Kennedy-Isbister pour les études et essais Sponsor: Manitoba Arts Council   Winner – Black Water: Family, Legacy, and … Read more

Financial assistance provided by the Manitoba Arts Council

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