The mission of the Whistler Writers Group is to:
- Provide a forum for Sea to Sky writers to develop their craft by bringing professional writers to our community to teach and be inspired here;
- Provide professional development opportunities locally;
- Grow the culture of literary arts within the region by holding public events that showcase local writers as well as other professional Canadian writers.
- Hosted 50+ Canadian authors, who have performed, read or instructed in Whistler since 2001, including: Andreas Schroeder, Annabel Lyon, Joseph Boyden, Stephen Galloway, Miriam Toews, Madeline Sonik, Wayne Johnston, Caroline Adderson, Susan Musgrave, Bill Gaston, Michael Winter, Lisa Moore, William Deverell, Laisha Rosnau, Michael V. Smith, Ivan Coyote, Nancy Lee, Timothy Taylor, Kevin Chong, Eden Robinson, Lee Henderson, Wayne Grady, Merilyn Simonds, Claire Mulligan, Mel Hurtig, Carrie Mac, Candas Jane Dorsey, Mark Forsythe, Elizabeth Lyon, Michael Tippert, Jen Sook Fong Lee, James Barber, Paulette Bourgeois, Maude Barlow, Charles Montgomery, Ross Laird, Howard White, Stephen Osborne, Mary Schendlinger, Lawrence Hill, Kate Pullinger, Kathy Page, Jenn Farrell, Brian Brett, CR Avery, Terrence Young, Patricia Young, Sarah Selecky and Shane Koyscan.
- Produced the Whistler Readers and Writers Festival since 2001.
- Organized and produced the annual writer-in-residence program since 2007: (Paulette Bourgeois (2007) and Candas Jane Dorsey (2008), Merilyn Simonds and Wayne Grady (2009)), Brian Brett (2010), and Sarah Selecky (2011). In 2008, demand for the residency exceeded our capacity. In 2009, over 130 people participated in one or more of the sessions and readings delivered in the community by our writers in residence. In 2010, 203 people attended one or more of the sessions and readings delivered in the community by our writer in residence, a 52% increase in attendance. And in 2011, close to 300 people attended one or more of our sessions.
- Delivered creative writing workshops in conjunction with corridor libraries, the Literary Leanings Reading series since 2002, and innovative public art installations like the Collective Novel Experiment and the weekly-serialized novel in the local newspaper.
- Supported First Nations writers, through scholarships and mentorship, since 2007.
- Received local, provincial and federal funding to complement self-supporting initiatives such as the Writer in Residence Program: (Cultural Capitals of Canada program (2008-2009), BC Arts Council Festival Projects Grant Program (2004-2011), Resort Municipality of Whistler (2004-2011), Arts Now (Catalyst) funding (2005, 2006, and 2009).), Writers Union of Canada Reading Series grants (2003 to 2001) Access Copyright Festivals grant (2010), Canada Council for the Arts, Author Residency Program (2011).
- In early 2009, we organized and delivered a six-part seminar series to Never Ever writers entitled, Feed the Seed. This series provided new participants with the opportunity to explore creative writing techniques and continue to build our local literary community. These courses have been delivered in Whistler and Pemberton. After the Winter Olympics, new courses were offered in Squamish, Whistler and Pemberton.
- Advocated the literary arts by providing:
- Literacy Day presentations at the local elementary schools, career day presentations at the high schools and at the Whistler Public Library,
- Support and input to Whistler 2020, the Sea to Sky Cultural Alliance,
- Arts planning for the 2010 Olympic Games and beyond and
- A supportive social network for aspiring, emerging and occasional writers.
Our Board includes: Stella Harvey, Founder
Rebecca Wood Barrett