Canada Writes

Canada Writes Blog

Kaveh Mohebbi (Toronto, ON)

Kaveh Mohebbi

Eastern Finalist 09

(April 27, 2009) I've learned now, that life is what happens to a writer between writing contests and drafts. Alas, as the sun sets on Canada Writes, I bid adieu to the cast and crew of GO! and feel an array of emotions: happiness and bliss for making it to the final round, yet humble sadness for not being crowned Mr. Canada Writes (ha ha ha). But I feel an overall sense of pride and accomplishment for having made it as far as I did, and the endless support from friends and family doesn't hurt either.

Congratulations to the other finalists (/rivals, ha ha), Laurie Schwartz and Margaret Beach, and an extra congrats to winner Katie Sanders.

As for me, it's on to the next leg of my journey as I continue on the path of the aspiring writer. What does the future hold for me? Who knows, perhaps a career as a writer on a hit television show, or feature film...or if all else falls through, I have eleven practice months until the next Canada Writes contest. Oh yeah, you heard write (not a typo), I'll be back! And to all aspiring writers out there, never put down that pen.

(March 16, 2009) My first visit to the Maritimes and it’s all thanks to CBC and the great people at GO!

The excitement leading up to the show was only further intensified when I saw the incredible hotel accommodations. I had a great time! (You're beautiful Halifax.)

First, I would like to congratulate all the other Semi-Finalists. Charlie, Sarah and Margaret, you all rocked and it was a blast meeting all of you. My first day meeting the Go crew was incredible too, walking into the CBC offices, nervous at first, but finding everyone was incredibly nice. The two hours I was given to write the challenges went by instantaneously. Fortunately I felt confident with my work by the time I was done.

Later, the overwhelming pressure of being live-to-air only increased with the packed theatre of fans watching us as we performed. The lights, the magic, the sound effects, it was all so neatly crafted together. I must admit though, the sixty-seconds challenge was certainly the toughest one of all. With literally zero time to proofread, I put it all on the line with one shot to advance.

Thank you to everyone involved, from judges to technical crew. See you all in April!

(March 6, 2009) The timing, the thrill, the tension, the tedious typos. I just can’t get enough. I first heard about the contest when my mother came trumpeting into the room with the news of a writing contest she heard on CBC Radio. I enthusiastically submitted my writing and waited. When I heard I was short-listed, the thought “it all comes down to this” harmoniously strummed through my mind like a broken record. The audition went by smoothly enough. Once I got over my initial nervousness, I grasped the metaphorical bull by its horns and just calmly answered the questions presented. I had a fun time with the initial writing challenge, but found myself more critical about my writing than I would have liked.

As I practice for future challenges, thoughts and words mingle over cocktails and Sinatra, dancing together as if entrapped within a helium balloon, soaring higher and freer than ever before. Every word is crucial. No sentence structure unassembled and no conjunction overlooked. The delicate adjectives all take their place as every adverb patiently waits her turn. I love this stuff! Now I must go practice to the Rocky theme song.

How It Works

  1. Write In!

    Out of hundreds and hundreds of entries, just twenty Canadians made it to the Short List and won themselves an audition with Canada Writes. Then eight semi-finalists were picked to play in the Eastern semi-finals and Western/Northern semi-finals.

    Read their winning songs, blogs, ads, rants and movie pitches!

  2. Tune In… or Join Us!

    On March 14th and April 4th, tune in to GO! on CBC Radio One at 10 am (10:30 am NT) for the Eastern and Western/Northern semi-final games in Halifax and Vancouver. The finals will be held in Toronto on April 18th. Or join us at any of the three shows to root for the contestants in person. Go to for tickets.

  3. Play Online!

    The Canada Writes 09 Online Challenge is now over. Thanks for playing!


(Toronto, April 25, 2009)

Canada Writes Finalists

It was a very tight race in the end. Our four finalists fought it out by blog, song, ad and a three-line story. First, they each drew a blog topic, from “the best hundred dollars I ever spent” to “one fact I would like to ‘un-know’”. Challenge number 2 was to re-write a song by Queen, with Valerie Stanois from the musical We Will Rock You bringing power vocals to their surprising new words. Then judges Geri Hall, Terry O’Reilly and Darrell Dennis sent Kaveh Mohebbi through the infamous Trap Door. Challenge number 3 was the radio ad. Clever ads for Cornhobbler’s Crematorium and Juice Bar (obviously not a real business) and Christmas greetings from the makers of Flank Chainsaws won Katie Sanders and Laurie Schwartz a last chance at writing glory, but it was Margaret Beach’s turn to go through the Trap Door. Finally, Laurie and Katie had to come up with the first two lines of a three-line story… on yellow writing pads on their laps…and in 90 seconds….

After weeks of effort and tension and achievement -- from the writing contest in January, through the auditions, the short list, the semi-finals and the finals – it was all over in a couple of minutes. Katie pulled ahead by a crucial point -- and became the winner of Canada Writes 09! Listen to the show! Read the blogs!

Canada Writes Judges

For more photos, go to

Winner of the Online Challenge! Ontario's Heather Smith is the winner of this year's People's Choice Award. Her winning entry was a re-write of the ABBA song 'Waterloo.' Take a look!