University of the Fraser Valley

Fraser Valley Literary Festival returns in November — alumnus is one of the keynote speakers

Fraser Valley Literary Festival returns in November — alumnus is one of the keynote speakers

Harrison Mooney, Marsha Lederman, and Jordan Abel, keynote panelists for the 2022 Fraser Valley Literary Festival.

The Fraser Valley Literary Festival returns as an in-person event this November.

The 2020 version was virtual due to the pandemic, and the 2021 version was a hybrid. Most of the authors will be attending in person this year, with three attending virtually.

The University of the Fraser Valley will welcome 11 authors to its Abbotsford campus to discuss writing, craft, and the writing life in contemporary Canada on Thursday and Friday, Nov 3 and 4.

The festival will include a powerful keynote program featuring authors Jordan Abel (attending remotely), Marsha Lederman, and Harrison Mooney.

Jordan Abel is a Nisga’a writer from Vancouver, and an assistant professor at the University of Alberta, where he teaches Indigenous literature and creative writing. He is the author of The Place of Scraps (winner of the Dorothy Livesay Poetry Prize), Un/inhabited, and Injun (winner of the Griffin Poetry Prize). Abel’s autobiographical book NISHGA attempts to address the complications of contemporary Indigenous existence and the intergenerational impact of residential schools. He recently completed a PhD at Simon Fraser University. Abel served as UFV’s writer-in-residence in 2017.

Marsha Lederman is a columnist with The Globe and Mail, based in Vancouver. Her 2022 memoir, Kiss the Red Stairs: The Holocaust, Once Removed, is an intimate look at the intergenerational trauma that is a legacy of the Holocaust. Lederman’s parents were survivors and many members of her family perished in the Holocaust. She has struggled with that legacy for her whole life.

The festival will be a homecoming of sorts for Harrison Mooney, who earned a Bachelor of Arts from UFV in 2006. His recently published memoir, Invisible Boy, reflects on his experiences as a Black child adopted and raised in Abbotsford by a white fundamentalist Christian family.

Coming back to read as a published author at his alma mater is a bit of a dream come true for Mooney.

“I’ve dreamed about returning to UFV — mostly nightmares about tests I’m unprepared for,” he quipped. “This is a much better way to be back, and I’m honoured.”

The FV Literary Festival kicks off at 4 pm on Thursday, Nov 3 with the keynote panel, followed by a reception.

On Friday, November 4, the event will feature two afternoon panels. Doors open at 11:45 am. Event starts at 12 pm and runs to 3:15 pm

Panel 1: Lie to Me: Truth and Fiction in Writing (Moderator: Harrison Mooney)
12-1:30 pm

Featured writers

Gurjinder Basran — Winner of the Ethel Wilson Fiction Prize for her debut novel Everything Was Good-bye.

Carlie Blume — Author of Gigglepuss, and a graduate from Simon Fraser University’s The Writers Studio @carliejblume

Alicia Elliott — Winner of the National Magazine Awards for A Mind Spread Out On The Ground and RBC Taylor Emerging Writer Awards (attending remotely).

Shawn Hitchins — A Toronto-based comedian, actor, and prolific author.

Panel 2: The Fantastic & the Mundane: Symbolism in the Everyday Panel (Moderator: Marsha Lederman) 1:45-3:15 pm

Featured writers

Tawahum Bige — A Łutselkʼe Dene, Plains Cree poet and spoken word artist.

Curtis LeBlanc — Author of Good for Nothing and Little Wild.

Annick MacAskill — Author of three poetry collections and finalist for various literary honours including the CBC Poetry Prize. (attending remotely)

Isabella Wang — Author of the chapbook on Forgetting a Language and the youngest writer to be shortlisted for the New Quarterly’s Edna Staebler Personal Essay Contest.

For more info on each panelist, please visit our social media sites:
Facebook: Fraser Valley Literary Festival
Twitter: @FVLitFest
Instagram: fvlitfest

Thurs, Nov 3 (4 pm) and Fri, Nov 4 (12-3:15 pm)
Student Union Building, UFV Abbotsford Campus

For more information, contact Hardeep Kaur at