Author, journalist and filmmaker Alexandre Sacha Trudeau talks about his first book Barbarian Lost: Travels In The New China

The University of Guelph College of Arts & College of Biological Science in conjunction with the 2016 Eden Mills Writers’ Festival present Alexandre Trudeau. Ever since he was a boy, Alexandre Trudeau has been fascinated by this great county. Recounting his experiences in the China of recent years, Trudeau visits artists and migrant workers, townspeople and rural farmers. Often accompanied by a young Chinese journalist, Vivien, he explores realities caught in time between the China of our memories and the thrust of progress. The China he seeks out lurks in hints and shadows. It flickers dimly amidst all the glare and noise. The people he encounters along the way give up but small secrets yet each revelation comes as a surprise that jolts us from our preconceived ideas and forces us to challenge our most secure notions.

Barbarian Lost, Trudeau’s first book, is an insightful and witty account of the dynamic changes going on right now in China, as well as a look back into the deeper history of this highly codified society. On the ground with the women and men who make China tick, Trudeau shines new light on the country as only a traveller with his storytelling abilities could.

Saturday, September 17, 2016 at 1:00 p.m.
War Memorial Hall, University of Guelph
General Admission $10 / Students $5 with ID

Don’t miss out on this insightful and witty event. Purchase advance tickets via or at The Bookshelf.

Children Under 14 are Free!

Eden Mills Writers’ Festival has something for children too! Introduce your children to the joy of literature with award-winning authors. Our children’s area will be hosting Jael Richardson reading from “The Stone Thrower: A Daughter’s Lesson, a Father’s Life.” This memoir is based on her relationship with her father, CFL quarterback Chuck Ealey. The book received a CBC Bookie Award and earned Richardson an Acclaim Award and a My People Award.

Other featured authors include: Deborah Hodge, Elly Mckay, Zig Misiak, Philip Roy, Joel Sutherland and Eric Walters.

The children’s area will also feature the magician, Ben Caeser, a delight for people of all ages.

Don’t miss your chance to share the joy of reading with your children. Children under 14 are free! Purchase your tickets to see these authors at the 2016 EMWF. 

Discover the Joy of YA Reads

052819Young adult literature isn’t just for the young adults anymore. Many adults are reading books for teens. These books aren’t anything to be ashamed of reading, many are often great reads.

This year at the Eden Mills Writers’ Festival you’ll find many young adult authors such as: Lena Coakley with Worlds of Ink and Shadow (Harper Collins), E.K. Johnston with Exit, Pursued by a Bear (Dutton Books) and The Story of Owen: Dragon Slayer of Trondheim (Carolrhoda Lab), Sylvia McNicoll with Best Friends Through Eternity (Tundra Books), Douglas Davey with Switch (Red Deer Press), Amanda West Lewis with September 17 (Red Deer Press) and The Pact (Red Deer Press), R.J. Anderson with Ultraviolet (Carolrhoda Lab) and Quicksilver (Carolrhoda Lab), and Liane Shaw with Don’t Tell, Don’t Tell, Don’t Tell (Second Story Press).

In addition, attendees of this year’s festival will also find Lisa Moore reading from her latest book Flannery (Groundwood Books). Lisa Moore is the acclaimed author of February, which was longlisted for the Man Booker Prize and selected as one of The New Yorker’s Best Books of the Year. Her novel Alligator was a finalist for the Scotiabank Giller Prize and won the Commonwealth Fiction Prize (Canada and the Caribbean). Flannery is her first young adult novel, complete with a “fully realized and nuanced protagonist, contradictory in all the most consistent ways” (The National Post).

Don’t miss your chance to discover the joy of YA reading. Purchase your tickets to see these authors at the 2016 EMWF.

We are very excited to announce our 2016 Eden Mills Writers’ Festival line-up

Once again we are assembling an eclectic and diversified group of critically acclaimed authors and literary prize winners representing a range of literary genres from literary fiction, poetry and non-fiction to memoirs and thrillers. With adult, teen and children’s programming, the festival will offer entertaining and thought-provoking programming for all ages. The Festival will also feature The Guelph Poetry Slam Team delivering their high energy performances.

You will want to ensure that September 16, 17, and 18 is marked in your literary calendars; especially Sunday 18th, Festival Sunday, to hear these wonderful authors reading and discussing their works and to meet them at our signing table or as they also mingle, munch and enjoy the festival in the charming village of Eden Mills.

Discover the 2016 line-up here.

June Newsletter

Our June newsletter has been delivered. Inside…

  • Q&A Upcoming 2016 EMWF author Nicholas Ruddock weighs in on Newfoundland, “The Phosphorescence,” and his new book, Night Ambulance.
  • Mill Musings Guelph’s MFA students return for another round
  • Youth Writers: Seeking young poets
  • The Millwright Book Club This month’s recommended reading

Our monthly email newsletter, newly named The Millwright: Musings from the Eden Mills Writers’ Festival offers exclusive author interviews, announcements, Q&As and insights from those who bring the festival to you year after year.


Sign up to receive The Millwright today and get the EMWF literary community news right to your inbox.

Eden Mills Writers’ Festival Employment Opportunity

Job title:  Assistant Festival Manager

Term: 8 weeks – June – August , 2016 at 35 hours per week

Salary:  $13 per hour + mileage for Festival-related travel

Reports to: Festival Manager

Location:  Eden Mills ON

Position overview

The Eden Mills Writers’ Festival is seeking a university student to assist with the operational and marketing activities involved in organizing, promoting and staging the Eden Mills Writers’ Festival.


Working closely with the Festival Manager and Board of Directors, this position will be instrumental in delivering a successful 2016 Festival. Duties will include:

Marketing – support all aspects of the Festival’s advertising and publicity campaigns, including website maintenance, ad placement, development of social media content and sites (e.g. Instagram), maintenance of Festival newsletter, media and advertising email lists, identification of free event listing opportunities,  Festival programme production (including generation of revenue through programme ad sales), distribution of promotional material and the measurement of e-communications performance and making/implementing  recommendations for improvement.

Volunteer liaison – assist in developing and maintaining a strong and committed volunteer base through effective communication, identification of tasks and volunteer assignment.

Author Liaison and Hospitality – assist with publisher/author liaison regarding author travel and accommodation arrangements and all other aspects related to hospitality.

Operations for Festival Sunday – provide event support by assisting with logistics and the procurement of equipment and services, liaising with vendors and partners. Includes reading site set-up, Food Court, dishwashing coordination, Information booth, book fair (i.e. Publishers’ Way), shuttle buses and licensed patio.       

Other duties – organize current and archival files; participate in an evaluation process during and at the end of the festival


The ideal candidate is enrolled in a post-secondary business, marketing or related program. Candidates must:

  • be between 15 and 30 years of age at the start of the employment;
  • have been registered as full-time students in the previous academic year and intend to return to school on a full-time basis in the next academic year;
  • be a Canadian citizen, permanent resident, or person to whom refugee protection has been conferred under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act2;
  • be legally entitled to work in Canada;
  • reside  In Eden Mills or able to commute daily to Eden Mills;
  • have a driver’s license and assess to transportation to and from Eden Mills (there is no public transportation in Eden Mills);
  • be available to attend occasional meetings in the evenings.


  • Strong verbal and written communication skills
  • Facility with Microsoft Office word processing and spread sheets  
  • Expertise in social media
  • Leadership, interpersonal and mediation skills
  • Time management:  proven organizational skills and attention to details
  • Ability to work independently
  • Ability to deal with crises and ambiguity
  • Some experience as an active volunteer in the community or school
  • Awareness of Canadian authors and the community of Eden Mills an asset

Supervision and Mentoring Plans

Supervision – The student will report to the Festival Manager.  Most of the time, the student will be directly supervised by the Festival Manager. If working on an aspect of the Festival that falls under a Board member, the student’s work will be supervised by that Board member. The student will required to submit a monthly report of activities to the Board. The monthly reports will provide the basis for an Informal performance review by the Festival Manager. A final performance review will be conducted with the Festival Manager and a Board member during the last week of work.

Mentoring – The Chair of the Board (a former Festival Manager and MBA graduate) will act as mentor to the student in order to:

  • help the student acclimate to the job and our culture;
  • increase their learning curve and productivity;
  • create a sense of engagement with the Festival;
  • encourage creativity;
  • develop skills and experience in areas of professional interest to the student.

Health and Safety Practices in the Workplace

The student will be required to take the Ontario Ministry of Labour’s Health and Safety Awareness Training course.

The student’s supervisor (Festival Manager) will advise the student of his/her rights under the Employment Standards Act. The ESA’s Employment Standards Poster published by the Ministry of Labour will be displayed in the Festival office.

The student will also be instructed by the Festival Manager regarding the Festival’s workplace harassment policies and procedures.

Please submit your resume and covering letter by email to by June 24th 2016.

May Newsletter

Our May newsletter has been delivered. Inside…

  • Q&A EMWF Artistic Director, Susan Ratcliffe, discusses this year’s authors, the decline of print media, and what (& where) she’s reading today.
  • Mill Musings The Special Treatment: Why you should enter the EMWF contests and Fringe, with comments from Alison Pick and former winner Lisa McLean.
  • Margin Notes EMWF Literary Contest and Fringe Competition details
  • Young Writers Youth poetry contest
  • The Millwright Bookclub This month’s recommended reading

Our monthly email newsletter, newly named The Millwright: Musings from the Eden Mills Writers’ Festival offers exclusive author interviews, announcements, Q&As and insights from those who bring the festival to you year after year.


Sign up to receive The Millwright today and get the EMWF literary community news right to your inbox.

The McGarrigles are coming to Guelph January 30!

Hillside Inside and the Eden Mills Writers’ Festival are thrilled to co-present Anna and Jane McGarrigle, authors of Mountain City Girls: The McGarrigle Family Album, on Saturday, January 30, 3 pm at St. George’s Church, Sanctuary, 99 Woolwich Street. Doors open at 2:30 pm.

Readings by Anna and Jane will be followed by a Q&A, book-signing and fan photo opportunity.

Tickets are $12 + HST, available from the Bookshelf and
9780345814029The folk music duo of Anna and Kate McGarrigle produced some of the most memorable music to come out of the North American folk scene in the past 35 years. They are fondly remembered by their devoted fans as brilliant, insightful songwriters with incredibly luminous voices. Their sister Jane managed her younger sisters’ music careers from the late 1970s to the mid-1990s. During this time she co-wrote several songs with the duo and performed with them in the studio and on tours of Canada, the United States, Europe and Australia.

Although the McGarrigle sisters never achieved mainstream popularity – Rolling Stone magazine described them as “the finest singer-songwriter team ever to go ignored by the American public” –  to those in the know, they are Canadian folk music royalty.

Mountain City Girls is a charming and intimate family memoir. Interspersed with lyrics and photos, it captures the McGarrigles’ lives, idiosyncratic upbringing, and literary and musical influences. No one could have told the story of the McGarrigles better than Anna and Jane, or in such an affectionate and captivating way.

A Guelph Fab5 Festival co-presentation supported by the Ontario Trillium Foundation

McGarrigle logos