Sudbury

Wordstock Sudbury back with '6th Edition' this weekend

It will be a meeting of the literary minds this weekend in Greater Sudbury: Wordstock Sudbury is out with the "6th Edition" of its annual festival.

Authors, poets from across Canada gather again to share readings, host discussions, workshops

Lauren Carter and Michael Hutchinson are two of the authors being showcased this weekend at Wordstock Sudbury. The annual festival takes place this year from Friday, Nov. 1 to Sunday Nov. 3. (laurencarter.ca, @Mike_Hutchins0n/Twitter.com)

It will be a meeting of the literary minds this weekend in Greater Sudbury: Wordstock Sudbury is out with the "6th Edition" of its annual festival.

Lauren Carter is one of the dozens of writers and storytellers the festival is bringing to Sudbury for the event, and this marks a return to northern Ontario for the featured author.

Carter is originally from Blind River, Ont., and now lives in St. Andrews, Man.

Her latest novel, This Has Nothing To Do With You, is set in a fictionalized Sudbury called "Norbury."

'Northern Ontario Gothic'

It's the story of siblings coming to terms with the fact that their mother has murdered their father. 

"I'm really interested in kind of what I like to call 'Northern Ontario Gothic,' said Carter, "which is about the realities underneath the normal everyday families that we see."

"[This book] starts with a murder," she continued. "That murder was actually based on the murder that happened on the highway outside of Blind River in 1991, which is to this day unsolved."

Reflecting on the mood of her work, Carter said there's something ineffable in the landscape of northern Ontario that informs much of her writing. 

"I grew up near Lake Huron, you know, looking out at that blank horizon line, hearing stories every winter of people going through the ice on their snow machines ...   and I think when you grow up within that kind of vast wilderness I feel like you do have a sense of kind of what's beyond — what's what's unknown what's kind of hidden."

'Make kids feel capable'

Michael Hutchinson's work also carries an air of mystery, but it's the kind of mystery that you might expect from a "Hardy Boys" novel. 

The Case of Windy Lake is the first novel in Hutchinson's "Mighty Muskrats Mystery Series" for young readers aged 7-12.  

"The 'Hardy Boy' books were  ... one of my favourite series of books," he said. "But unfortunately couldn't relate to them in some ways because they were rich they had dirt bikes and all that kind of stuff and I didn't."

He continued, "So I wanted to write a series of books that kid First Nation kids could relate to more, that would educate Canadian kids about First Nation ideas and First Nation situations, and also make kids feel capable."

Wordstock Sudbury takes place from Friday, Nov. 1 to Sunday, Nov. 3. 

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