Russell Wangersky reads at the Sunday matinee portion of Writers at Woody Point. — Photo by Paul Hutchings/The Western Star
Writer Michael Winter was the last author to read to the crowd of about 120 at this year’s Writers at Woody Point festival’s Sunday matinee.
Winter, who was born in the United Kingdom but was raised in Corner Brook, read from his book “The Death of Donna Whelan” and kept the crowd laughing with his experiences as a writer.
This year’s festival was one of the best attended, with more events added for attendees. Writers like Winter and his sister Kathleen Winter, Russell Wangersky, Emma Don-oghue and Joel Thomas Hynes took part.
Wangersky, The Telegram’s editorial page editor, who also did a matinee reading, said he has always loved the sense of community the Woody Point event provides those taking part.
“Other festivals, they’re spread out, you don’t really get to see one another. It’s not very friendly sometimes,” he said. “But here it’s all within a specific area. We can walk around and talk to each other — it’s wonderful.”
Globe and Mail editor Allison Gzowsky participates in the festival each year. She said the extra events were what made it more special for 2011 and she hopes 2012 will see even more. Newfoundland indie rock band Hey Rosetta!, she said, was the main reason for the early start.
“We started on a Monday this year because there was such a demand for Hey Rosetta!,” she said. “We had several different outreach programs that were very successful and we will be looking at next year soon.”
As for which writers they will invite, Gzowsky said it’s still up in the air.
“You have to be mindful of their schedules as well as our own because they have so much going on. For example, Kathleen (Winter) just got back from Edinburough, Scotland, and came straight here,” she said.
“When we’re inviting writers we have to be careful their schedules don’t conflict with ours.”
Michael Winter said he loved how welcome he and his family always feel whenever they come back.
“This place has always embraced us and the people are so warm,” he said. “It’s better than most other festivals, always well organized and it’s fun to be here.”
The Western Star