Having fun with the Manitoba Writers’ Guild

I’ve had a few exciting times related to the Guild over the past few weeks. First, we had our Annual General Meeting where they officially announced my position as one of the VPs and new head of the Resource Development Committee. Apart from the business side of the meeting, we had a lovely luncheon and got to watch the movie In the Wake of the Flood, chronicling Margaret Atwood’s book tour following the launch of Year of the Flood.

Last Friday, two fellow Guild members and I manned a table at the annual SAGE conference for teachers, EAs and library technicians. We got to talk to a lot of people about our writing programs and showed them a small array of books written by local YA authors. It was amazing how few people were aware how many Manitoba writers there really are – and these are teachers and librarians! I have a long list of email addresses where I will send my long list of local YA authors and their books, as well as the local publishers who produce Young Adult fiction. I even sold 5 of my books at the event. Bonus! 🙂


Yesterday, I manned another table for the Writer’s Guild at C4 (Central Canada Comic Con). I had a blast! I loved working with fellow Guild member and poet, Kyla. She was so ‘into’ Dr. Who, so we had lots to chat about when we weren’t talking to writers looking for info about our programming. We also spelled each other off so we could go check out the other vendors. I headed upstairs to Artist Alley where I ran into Samantha Beiko selling her book The Lake and the Library. I missed seeing Chadwick Ginther, author of Thunder Road and his recently launched sequel, Tombstone Blues, which I will be reading and reviewing soon. Walking a little further, up against the far wall, was a huge lineup of stars. Beginning in the order of how they are listed on the website, there was:

Ron Perlman (Beauty & the Beast, Blade II, Pacific Rim) – at least his booth was set up, even if he wasn’t actually there, yet.
Jason David Frank (Power Rangers)
Bill Goldberg (World Champion Wrestler)
James Marsters (Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, Smallville, Torchwood)
Tony Amendola (Jaffa master Bra’tac in Stargate)
Aaron Ashmore (Warehouse 13, Smallville, Veronica Mars)
Michael Benyaer (Voice of Bob on Reboot, & guest starred in The Mentalist, 24, Castle, NCIS etc)
Bruce Boxleitner (Babylon 5, Tron, Scarecrow & Mrs. King)
Avery Brooks (Commander Sisko on Star Trek Deep Space 9)
Malcolm Denare (John Carpenter’s Christine, Godzilla)
Yaya Han (costume designer, model & cosplay entertainer)
Brendan Hunter (mainly a Voice Actor for many games/cartoons)
Walter Koenig (Chekov on Star Trek, Bester on Babylon 5)
Robert Duncan McNeill (Start Trek Voyager)
Dave Prowse (Darth Vader, although James Earl Jones did the voice)
Chris Sarandon (Princess Bride, Child’s Play, Fright Night)
Laura Vandervoot (Supergirl on Smallville, ‘V’ the most recent series)

When I saw one particular actor there, I hurried downstairs to grab my wallet. With heart all aflutter, I stood in line and stammered out a request to get his autograph. Bruce Boxleitner was as personable as I hoped he would be. I hemmed and hawed about which photo I wanted him to autograph but finally chose his Babylon 5 pose. He has aged quite gracefully and his dimpled smile made me blush. I really should have splurged, paid the extra $10, and got my photo taken with him, but what a fangirl moment! 😀

Photo 17

Another great moment was when one young attendee came up to me when she saw my books displayed. She said she’d read Whithershins and loved it! She even dragged over a friend and told her about it! I was thrilled that she’d read it, liked it and was recommending it to others. 🙂

The folks at the table next to us were flogging their horror film, Dark4Rest, filmed here in Manitoba with local-grown actors, director, etc. so I bought one of their calendars to help them out, even though I’m not really a horror fan. That shouldn’t stop you from checking out their website. They even have a Dark4Rest ‘teaser’.

There was also a local company with a working 3-D printer, which was really cool. Both Kyla and I were escorted over to their table and shown what their company could do. The most fascinating article on the table that was made with the printer was a miniature replica of our tour guide’s head! Apparently, Asset-Works offers tours of their facility every Tuesday. They are a non-profit workshop providing access to fabrication equipment, support and knowledge for entrepreneurs.

At the end of the day, and in keeping with the theme of our day, I bought two pairs of Dr. Who socks from a vender around the corner from our table. The black pair had a T.A.R.D.I.S. on them, the grey pair had red Daleks. They are a little big in the foot part and the stitching of the designs makes them a bit tight in the rise. Oh, well, I will wear them anyway!

C4 is on again tomorrow, for those in town who want to check out all the fun. If you aren’t able to go in person, there are (and probably will be) more pictures of our wonderful Guild volunteers and members on our Facebook page. Click here to see all the shenanigans. 🙂