Surrey International Writers Conference

Those of you who enjoy writing, or at least appreciate reading works of others, may enjoy learning about an excellent opportunity to be immersed in both endeavours.

I attended the Surrey International Writers Conference. I stayed at the Sheraton Vancouver Guilford that has been our host hotel for all but the first two years of this thirty-year-old event. Because of COVID the planners had to go partly to Zoom-style recordings. They are available to registered attendees for 30 days following the in-person sessions.

In their report to attendees the committee organizers wrote that there had been presenters and attendees from nine provinces. Additionally, there were attendees from 28 of the United States. People attended from at least 14 countries: Canada, Australia, China, England, France, Germany, Mexico, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Scotland, Switzerland, Trinidad and the United States. “It all made for a superb lineup of 63 presenters, 46 in person and 17 online.”

This 31st anniversary of the Surrey Writers Conference concluded Sunday afternoon after a four-day blended in-person and virtual conference. In closing the organizers stated, “It was a pleasure to constantly hear about connections forged, inspirations generated, and eschewing, ‘see you in Surrey next year.’”

A well respected and favourite presenter, Robert Dugoni, bequeathed us with the SIWC tag line in his keynote speech about 10 years ago, “This day we Write!” I have a leather notebook with that saying.

There are many examples of how the conference is a labour of love for the co-chairs, Ursula Maxwell Lewis and the conference coordinator, Kathy Chung. I look forward to attending again next October.