Monday, October 18, 2010

A month with Brian Brett

Ten aspiring writers have just completed a month of mentorship with one of Canada's finest writers, Brian Brett, writer in residence at Whistler BC.

As one of the ten, I would travel up to Whistler twice a week, leave my truck in the beautiful little Wayside Park and follow the Valley Trail around Alta Lake to the 'Station House' where Brian was staying. Sometimes it would be dark and we'd hike around using headlamps and talking about bear. Most of the time the brilliant autumn colours accompanied us along the path.

Brian Brett was a very engaging mentor. Speaking animatedly about books and writing while drinking homegrown tea brewed in a 2 foot high glass and silver pot, Brian kept us keen and on topic with his obvious talent, experience, and love for the writing craft. The mentorship included 4 one-on-ones and 4 group sessions, and closed with a delicious potluck and lots of promises to keep in touch.

Brian was one of the readers in the closing event of the 2010 Whistler Writers Festival. He read poetry, rather than excerpts from his latest book Trauma Farm, and entertained a somewhat sleepy audience with wonderful earthy pieces read in a sonorous and joyful voice. What a treat to hear this poet read aloud! If you ever get a chance to spend time with Brian Brett, do not miss the opportunity!

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