Announcing the 2020 Wild Writers Literary Festival: Going Wild Online!

The New Quarterly is proud to announce the 2020 Wild Writers Literary Festival. The festival will take place online via Zoom and from November 1 to November 21, 2020. 

The Wild Writers Literary Festival is presented by The New Quarterly, Words Worth Books, and the Balsillie School of International Affairs (BSIA). By moving to an online platform this year, we hope to reach more readers and writers from our loyal, local festival attendees to our TNQ readership across the country. We are pleased to announce that, in an attempt to make the festivities accessible to everyone, nearly all events will be free to attend. 

The Wild Writers Literary Festival will present panels, workshops, interviews, mentorships, and meditations featuring some of Canada’s most prominent writers. Guests this year include: Amanda Leduc, Emily Urquhart, Jack Wang, Helen Humphreys, Nicole Smith, Erin Bow, Heather Smith, Chelene Knight, Pamela Mulloy, Russell Smith, Brent van Staalduinen, Susan Bryant, Julia Zarankin, Paul Vermeersch, Catherine Bush, Mahak Jain, Ashley-Elizabeth Best, Nancy Jo Cullen, Y.S. (Ying) Lee, Kirsteen MacLeod, Sadiqa de Meijer, Susan Olding, and Sarah Tsiang. 

New: The Wild Writers Mentorship Program

In 2020, the festival team is launching the Wild Writers Mentorship Program. Enrolment guarantees writers one-on-one time with a seasoned writing professional. Successful applicants to the mentorship program will be paired with either Helen Humphreys, Pamela Mulloy, Susan Scott, or Andrew Westoll. The mentorship program will cost $150 to attend. Registration is limited to twenty participants; applications are due November 16, 2020.

New: Workshop Series for Young Writers

Applications are now open for Youth Writing: An Interactive Workshop Series. This series will give the next generation of writers (ages 14-18) the opportunity to ask questions, discuss writing techniques, and workshop creative writing material with esteemed writers Erin Bow and Heather Smith. The series will consist of three workshop sessions over the course of two weekends in November. Placements in this workshop will be offered free-of-charge to successful applicants; applications are due October 19, 2020. If you wish to help us support young and emerging writers you can do so by donating at: or

New: Meditations 

To offer some moments of healing in these times of uncertainty, we are including Meditations in the 2020 festival. Meditations will take a variety of artistic formats, including audio, visual, and textual. Meditations will be crafted by writers such as Helen Humphreys, Jael Richardson, Waubgeshig Rice, and Sanchari Sur. These writers will write and record meditations on topics that hold deep meaning for them. If you appreciate the importance of mental health and wellbeing, voice your support at: or

The schedule for the festival can be found on the Wild Writers website here. Be sure to check out all the events ahead of time and keep in mind that registration will be open on October 20, 2020.

We hope to see you there!