Introducing UPEI’s winter 2018 writer-in-residence Steven Heighton

Novelist, poet, short-story writer and essayist will give a reading and two writing workshops
Monday, January 8, 2018
Steven Heighton

This winter’s UPEI writer-in-residence will be Steven Heighton, award-winning novelist, poet, short-story writer, and essayist. He will give a public reading on Tuesday, February 6 at 7:30 pm and will lead two writing workshops on Saturday, February 10. Both events will be in the Faculty Lounge of UPEI’s SDU Main Building.

Raised in Toronto and northern Ontario, Heighton travelled and worked in western Canada, Australia, and Asia, studied at Queen’s University, and settled in Kingston, Ontario, where he writes full time. His distinctions include several gold medals for fiction and poetry from the National Magazine Awards and the 2016 Governor General’s Award for Poetry for The Waking Comes Late. He has been writer-in-residence at several universities and has led writing workshops in diverse settings including The Banff Centre, the Sage Hill Writing Experience in Saskatchewan, and the Summer Literary Seminars in St. Petersburg, Russia.

His morning workshop (9:30 am to 12:00 pm) will feature “re-enactive” techniques, which allow writers “to create sentences or passages of great vividness and sensual intensity. To work re-enactively is to embody, in the full sensory meaning of that word, whatever you're writing about, rather than just describing it,” explained Heighton.

In the afternoon workshop (1:30 pm to 4:00 pm), writers will practice “homophonic translation.” This exercise involves “translating” from a language participants don’t know, just on the basis of sound. “The results,” said Heighton, “are always funny and often spectacularly good—and sometimes also moving. The process is a wonderful way to make writers approach their work with greater acoustical/musical sensitivity rather than simply, flatly saying something about how they feel.”

The workshop are $40 each, or $70 for the whole day. Seniors and students pay $35 for one or $60 for the day. To register, see the UPEI Winter’s Tales Authors’ Reading Series Facebook site.

Steven Heighton’s visit and the UPEI Writer-in-Residency program are sponsored by UPEI’s Dean of Arts, the Vice-President Academic/Research, and the UPEI English Department, with generous support from The Canada Council for the Arts.

The University of Prince Edward Island prides itself on people, excellence, and impact and is committed to assisting students reach their full potential in both the classroom and community. With roots stemming from two founding institutions—Prince of Wales College and Saint Dunstan’s University—UPEI has a reputation for academic excellence, research innovation, and creating positive impacts locally, nationally, and internationally. UPEI is the only degree granting institution in the province and is proud to be a key contributor to the growth and prosperity of Prince Edward Island. 

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