Q&A with Richard Van Camp

Q: I’ve always wanted to write, but I’ve been too busy with work and life. What advice can you give someone who wants to start writing?

A: My advice is that you read work that lights you on fire, listen to music that takes you places, watch a lot of movies and TV shows, listen to those who know and find out when you’re the best at honing your craft. Are you a morning writer? Are you a Night Cat? Are you a weekender? And honour this. Stick with it. Remember: you can talk yourself out of writing anything: the key is to get that first draft down. Think of it as wet clay. Once it’s down, it’s down. You can work on it from there.

Q: Will you give me feedback on my writing?

A: Yes, that’s my job as the Metro writer in residence. Please limit your submissions to 5 pages (12 point font, single-sided and double-spaced).

Q: How do I submit my writing sample?

A: Please contact me first. The best way to reach me is through email at regionalwir@gmail.com or metrowir.com. You can also leave a voicemail at (780) 240-1194. The easiest way to send me material is via email.

Q: What are your office hours? Can I drop in?

A: My hours will vary from month to month, but I will be in every Tuesday and Thursday from 1–4pm.  I’ll post my final schedule on my door or post them on this website. Your best bet for getting a meeting is to email or call ahead.

Q: What kind of writing can I send you?

A: I’m happy to read anything you’re willing to submit. I’m open to reading any genre, but please keep in mind that I’ll probably give the most constructive feedback in my areas of expertise: fiction, books for families, the short story, poetry, and creative non fiction. If you want to get a sense of what I write, please visit my website (richardvancamp.com) or check out one of my books from the library.

Q: When you give feedback on my writing, will you make me cry?

A: Only tears of joy when I pile praise upon praise for you. 🙂

Q: I have a great idea, but I don’t know how to write it. Will you write it for me?

A: Sorry: you have to earn this yourself. I promise there’s no greater feeling than having a story choose you and you finding a way to take it to where it deserves to go.

Q: Can I meet with you about anything other than my writing sample?

A: Sure! I’m from Fort Smith, NWT, and I love to visit! Let’s visit. : )

Q: Can you find me an agent or publisher?

A: I’ll do my best.

Q: Do you know the secret of how to get published or produced?

A: This depends on where you’re at with your craft. Things take time. It’s best to use this time to focus and dive deep. I’m happy to be your biggest cheerleader. 🙂

Welcome 2017 EPL Writer in Residence David van Belle

DavidvanBelleBorn in Amsterdam and raised all over Canada, David van Belle is a relative newcomer to Edmonton and will call EPL home for the whole of 2017. He is a playwright, director, actor and theatre deviser who has been Co-Artistic Director of Ghost River Theatre, an ensemble member of One Yellow Rabbit and playwright-in-residence at Alberta Theatre Projects.

“It’s an honour to be able to set up shop at the Edmonton Public Library,” said van Belle. “I’m looking forward to digging into Edmonton’s exciting writing and theatrical community. I’m fascinated by people’s lives and the ways in which they live them – and I know there are many stories in this city that can be told many ways.”

Van Belle has created such works as BUZZ JOB! The True Story of Cal Cavendish with Kris Demeanor and The Invisible Project during a month-long residency at Calgary’s largest homeless shelter. He is also a recipient of the Lieutenant Governor of Alberta Arts Award, several Betty Mitchell awards and numerous other citations, as well as being a multiple nominee for the Gwen Pharis Ringwood prize in play writing.

Welcome 2017 Regional Writer in Residence Richard Van Camp

Richard Van Camp headshot

Strathcona County Library is proud to host a Meet and Greet with Richard Van Camp on Saturday January 7.

2017 Writer in Residence Richard Van Camp is a proud member of the Dogrib (Tlicho) Nation from Fort Smith, Northwest Territories. An internationally renowned storyteller and best-selling author, he is also a writer of multiple talents, with baby books, children’s books, comic books, graphic novels and films all to his credit. His work has been translated into a variety of indigenous languages and adapted for the screen.

Richard is a graduate of the En’owkin International School of Writing, the University of Victoria’s Creative Writing BFA Program, and the Master’s Degree in Creative Writing at the University of British Columbia.

He wrote for CBC’s North of 60 television show under their Writer Internship Program and was a script and cultural consultant with them for four seasons. He has taught Creative Writing at the University of British Columbia, worked as a Creative Writing and Storytelling instructor with the Emily Carr Institute and was the Writer in Residence at the University of Alberta for 2011 and 2012, and at MacEwan University in 2013 and 2014.

Richard is currently shooting the movie Three Feathers in his hometown, in each of the official languages of the South Slave Region: Dene, Bush Cree, South Slavey and English. You can visit Richard on Facebook, Twitter or at his website: www.richardvancamp.com