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Features Blog
July 2013- Archives

No one else can write your story

An interview with writer and participant in The Banff Centre's Literary Journalism student program, Shelley Youngblut. Photo credit: Heather Saitz...

Quit taking it personally: surviving feedback on your writing

An interview with writer and participant in Banff's Literary Journalism program, Russell Cobb....

How to survive being edited

Writing is a solitary endeavour—especially when you’re alone in a cabin with just the trees, mountains, and your own thoughts to keep you company. But at some point, if you’re at the Banff Centre’s Literary Journalism program, the time comes for you to share what you’ve written with others.Canada Writes...

Avoid self-indulgence but take naps

Being edited forced author Camilla Gibb to grow up and get professional. Editor Martha Sharpe has to sink into the muck and feel for unseen shapes before she can comment on a manuscript. They share their experiences on writing and editing.  ...

More from: Writers on Editors

13 places where you can become a better writer

Want to improve your writing skills? No matter where you are in this fine country, you can polish your creative writing in a workshop, at a retreat, or in a degree program. Here’s a selection of these programs. Click on the different images to discover each location: We know there...

"X" marks the spot

For a first time writer, seeing your precious work crossed out page after page with large "X" can seem daunting. But for writer Jonathan Goldstein it was one of his greatest learning experiences.Here, in their own words, are Jonathan and his editor Ken Sparling discussing the editing process and how...

More from: Writers on Editors

Four-letter words and helpless laughter

For a writer, working with an editor can be a challenge. There's the editor who wants you to write it exactly how he would have written it, or the editor who barely touches your work. (Did he even read it, you wonder?) Just how do you deal with it?But it's...

More from: Writers on Editors

100 tips to make you a better writer

Over the last two years, Canada Writes has collected a whole bunch of wonderful writing tips from Canadian poets, novelists, practitioners of creative nonfiction, and writers of children's books. So pick a word, find a tip, and try it out!...

Mo Srivastava on Planet Earth

There are five names on the shortlist for this year's CBC Creative Nonfiction. Before we announce the winner, we want to introduce you to the finalists and their stories. Mo Srivastava talks about starting to write at age 50, his work as a geostatistician, and the false assumptions we make about other...

Linda Rosenbaum on finding moments of joy in sadness

There are five names on the shortlist for this year's CBC Creative Nonfiction Prize. Before we announce the winner, we want to introduce you to the finalists and their stories. Linda Rosenbaum talks about loving roses and hamburgers, the importance of educating people about Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, and what it's like to...

Jenny Manzer on seeing the world through stories

There are five names on the shortlist for this year's CBC Creative Nonfiction Prize. Before we announce the winner, we want to introduce you to the finalists and their stories. Jenny Manzer talks about running everywhere like Forrest Gump, the particular challenge and satisfaction of writing nonfiction, and the terrifying nature of...

Terri Favro on life after "Icarus"

There are five names on the shortlist for this year's CBC Creative Nonfiction Prize. Before we announce the winner, we want to introduce you to the finalists and their stories. Terri Favro talks about her life after "Icarus," and how she went from being evicted without warning to selling death-mask chocolates at the...

Matthew Hooton on snakes, lies, and storytelling

There are five names on the shortlist for this year's CBC Creative Nonfiction Prize. Before we announce the winner, we want to introduce you to the finalists and their stories. Matthew Hooton talks about writing, lying, and traveling, and his obsession with Bruce Chatwin. Read his creative nonfiction piece, "This Tongue."...

The ability to shake us up: CNF reader Lorri Neilsen Glenn

As we prepare to unveil the shortlist for the 2013 Creative Nonfiction Competition, we're asking the readers what it's like to read hundreds of short stories in search of the best. Lorri Neilsen Glenn talks about the capacity of nonfiction to "dance with reporting, philosophy, storytelling, and poetry."...

An authentic voice: CNF reader John Vigna

As we prepare to unveil the shortlist for the 2013 Creative Nonfiction Competition, we're asking the readers what it's like to read hundreds of short stories in search of the best. Here's John Vigna on looking for an authentic voice, humility, and wisdom. ...

An unusal perspective or epiphany: CNF reader Joan Dixon

As we prepare to unveil the shortlist for the 2013 Creative Nonfiction Competition, we are introducing the readers who read hundreds of your stories in search of the best. Joan Dixon believes that, "True stories, artfully crafted and compellingly told, can be as or more enthralling than fiction."...

Attention is a finite resource: CNF reader Christopher Shulgan

As we prepare to unveil the shortlist for the 2013 Creative Nonfiction Competition, we're introducing the readers who read hundreds of your stories in search of the best. Voracious reader Christopher Shulgan believes it's important not to waste a single word. ...