Whistler Spotlight: Whistler Writer’s Festival

September 22, 2016
Writers Festival

The Whistler Writer’s Festival takes place every fall and celebrates the written word, while giving the chance to meet authors, attend workshops and hear renowned guest speakers.

Started by a small group of volunteers, the festival aims to promote the literary arts, and provide a forum for local writers to develop their craft within the community. Since its humble beginnings it has grown into a large multi-day, multi-venue event, while still managing to keep its original ethos.

About the festival

The festival began in 2002, set up by the Whistler Writing Society, and from having 20 attendees at inception, it has quickly grown to host well over a thousand.

The aim is to showcase local, regional and internationally known Canadian writers as well as being a catalyst for up and coming local writers in the Sea-to-Sky Corridor. The event sees a huge range of guest speakers and authors come to give talks along with hosting workshops for writers.

The festival takes place over four days and includes a comedy event, writing workshops, readings and live music, each focussed on a new theme which shapes the content of the talks and celebrates an aspect of life, the festival, or writing.


There is a huge range of events at the festival aimed to focus on both reading and writing. Each year the schedule and theme changes with different authors and guest speakers.

Comedy Quickies

The first night of the festival always features Comedy Quickies, where writers present their funny shorts to a panel of judges. The 10 finalists compete for a cash prize and two awards, one for Best Comedy Writing along with a People’s Choice Award.

Chef’s Reception

The Chef’s Reception features a great selection of award winning food authors and chefs, who will be discussing their books and some of their recipes.

There will also be a range of appetisers and wine pairings for attendees to enjoy throughout the talk.


Each year the festival hosts a number of workshops for local budding writers looking to work on their craft. The aim of these is to increase their chances of getting published and provide a friendly forum for feedback.

Workshops are hosted by successful authors, writers and publishers who are happy to chat and answer questions on their relevant topics. Writers are then encouraged to put their pitching skills to the test with publishers and agents.

Reading Events

The huge range of reading events varies every year with regulars such as the literary cabaret, which also features live music performances.

Fore more detail on the reading events, see the program schedule for this year’s festival.


For more information on the Whistler Writer’s Festival, check out the official website.

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