Vancouver Public Library Names Eighth Writer in Residence

(Vancouver, British Columbia) — Known across Canada as a writer of urban spaces and an innovator of narrative forms, award-winning poet, writer and historian Meredith Quartermain is Vancouver Public Library’s eighth Writer in Residence.

Ms. Quartermain, the author of five books, will begin her residency today by inspiring and sharing her vast experience with young writers at the Library’s annual Writing & Book Camp. During her four-month tenure she will mentor emerging writers, teach new song writers how to jumpstart their lyrics and encourage workshop participants to explore and map their neighbourhood through memoirs, stories and poems.

"Vancouver Public Library is delighted to have Meredith Quartermain as our eighth Writer in Residence," said Chief Librarian Sandra Singh. "She combines extensive experience as an author and an educator to create an innovative slate of public program ideas. The community will benefit from her passion for stories and the spoken word."

The Writer in Residence program allows the writer to spend 75 percent of their time working on their own project. Ms. Quartermain will work on her new novel set in 1970s Vancouver. The remaining time will be spent on community projects, events and mentoring emerging writers one-on-one.

"Learning from artists who have traveled the road ahead is one of the most valuable experiences I've enjoyed," said Ms. Quartermain. "That's why I wanted to give some time to helping aspiring writers in Vancouver, and in this way, through writing and reflection, help to make our community more visible to itself."

Ms. Quartermain’s first book, Vancouver Walking, won the 2006 BC Book Award for Poetry. Her second, Nightmarker, was a finalist for the 2009 Vancouver Book Award and Recipes from the Red Planet was a finalist for the 2011 BC Book Award for fiction. Her work has appeared in The Walrus, Canadian Literature, CV2, Matrix, Prism and other Canadian and U.S. magazines, and was recently included in Best Canadian Poetry.

An active participant in the writing and publishing community, Ms. Quartermain has taught at schools and universities across Canada, including Kootenay School of Writing, Toronto New School of Writing, Naropa University, Simon Fraser University, Capilano College and University of British Columbia. She also is a co-founder of the award-winning Nomados Literary Publishers, which has published more than 35 books of contemporary writing.

Emerging writers who would like a one-on-one consultation with Meredith Quartermain must apply to be considered. Information is available at

Ms. Quartermain’s inaugural public reading is on Tuesday, September 11 at 7 p.m. at the Central Library, Alice MacKay room. Admission is free.

The 2012 Writer-in-Residence program is made possible with financial support from the Canada Council for the Arts and the Friends of the Vancouver Public Library.

Photograph: Screengrab,

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