Regional Conferences & Retreats


CanWrite!: June, 2017 — Orillia, Ontario

The Canadian Authors Association’s annual CanWrite! conference is designed for aspiring, emerging and accomplished writers alike.

Bouchercon 2017: Oct 12-Oct 15, 2017 — Toronto, Ontario

The World Mystery Convention is a nonprofit, all-volunteer organization which holds an annual convention in honor of Anthony Boucher, the distinguished mystery fiction critic, editor and author.

Bouchercon is our annual world mystery convention where every year readers, writers, publishers, editors, agents, booksellers and other lovers of crime fiction gather for a 4-day weekend of education, entertainment, and fun! This is a huge event and one of the largest mystery writers conferences in North America for both fans and authors.

ComicCon 2017: Mar 17-Mar 19, 2017 – Toronto, Ontario

Spring’s #1 community event in Toronto! Located in the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, the show will be boasting unique exhibitors, presentations, workshops and many celebrity guests.

Forest City ComiCon: Sept 23, 2017 – London, Ontario

A celebration of nerd culture like no other: the largest event of its  kind ever to hit London, Ontario will return in 2017. Returning to the London Convention Centre and continuing its partnership with Project Play, the event will feature costumes, vendors, panels, board games, video game tournaments. The event promises a celebration of nerd culture and the popular culture that surrounds it.

ComicCon 2017: Oct 13- Oct 15, 2017 – London, Ontario

SW Ontario’s Largest Weekend Long Fan Event!! Pop culture and comics, celebrity guests and more! back in Oct 2017! Western Fair District Progress Building

GenreCon 2017: Apr 9, 2017— Sarnia/Point Edwards, Ontario

Sarnia-Lambton’s celebration of the fun & fantastic returns for a 5th year… now with a new larger venue. A multi-genre convention with a focus on comics, cosplay, games and toys, SPCS will be taking over Point Edward Arena! In support of St. Clair Child & Youth Services, a portion of every ticket purchased will go to this vital organization. Check back often for updates and announcements!


Young Adult Stratford Writers Festival – May 6th, 2017.

From the festival’s website:  “Join some of Canada’s top writers in Stratford for the Young Adult Stratford Writers Festival! Featuring engaging panel discussions, informative writing workshops, and author meet and greets, this festival has something for every book lover including the young and young at heart. Authors scheduled to appear at the festival include Marthe Jocelyn, Danielle Younge-Ullman, Deb Loughead, Sue Marshall, Lesley Livingston, EK Johnston, R.J. Anderson, Rick Revelle, and former Ontario lieutenant-governor James Bartleman.”

Ad Astra May 5th-May 7, 2017, Toronto, Ontario

From the website: “Ad Astra is a not-for-profit, volunteer-run, weekend-long, science fiction, fantasy and horror event with a focus on authors and other creative professionals.”

Windsor International Writers Conference 2017: Date TBA (April) —Windsor, Ontario

From the website: “Join us at the friendliest and liveliest writers’ conference around. You’ll have the chance to meet other writers, learn the craft of writing and tricks of the trade. We’ll explore the ethics of writing and how to tell a really good story. We’ll examine writing for minorities and cultures. Be inspired by the best of the best authors in the business. Oh, and we’ll have some publishers and agents hanging around, just in case you might want to meet them as well.”

Canadian Writing Center Association Conference:  May 25-May 26, 2017 — Toronto, Ontario

Save the Date The CWCA Conference will take place May 25-26, 2017 at OCAD University in Toronto, Ontario. Keynote speaker: Dr. Frankie Condon, University of Waterloo We will circulate the call for proposals within the next few weeks, but in the meantime, mark your calendars for what promises to be a fabulous event

Toronto Writing Workshop: Date TBA– Toronto, Ontario

From the website: “This is a special one-day “How to Get Published” writing workshop … one day full of classes and advice designed to give you the best instruction concerning how to get your writing & books published. We’ll discuss your publishing opportunities today, how to write queries & pitches, how to market yourself and your books, what makes an agent/editor stop reading your manuscript, and more. … . Writers of all genres are welcome. … We will have literary agents onsite to give feedback and take pitches from writers, as well.”

2016 Eden Mills Writers’ Festival: Date TBA — Eden Mills, Ontario

The official website can be found here. From the Wikipedia article on the festival: The Eden Mills Writers’ Festival … includes readings by poets, authors, and other writers at various outdoor venues throughout the village. In previous years more than 40 Canadian authors appeared to give readings and interact with audiences, including notable Canadian writers like Margaret Atwood and P. K. Page. On September 15, 2013, the Festival celebrated its 25th anniversary.

The Lakefield Literary Festival:  July 14 – July 16, 2017 –Lakefield, Ontario

In commemoration of Margaret Laurence, Catharine Parr Traill, Susanna Moodie and our community’s ongoing literary heritage, the Lakefield Literary Festival showcases Canadian authors and promotes the joy of reading and writing among children and adults.

SFContarioNov 17 – Nov 19, 2017, Toronto, Ontario

SFContario celebrates the best of science fiction and fantasy. This includes the content of literature, media, and visual arts, the educational and academic aspects of science and culture, and the participatory and social aspects such as costuming, gaming, filking, fanzines, online fandom, and other fannish activities.

Word on the Street Toronto: Sept 24, 2017, Toronto, Ontario

Participate in hundreds of author readings, discussions, and activities, and shop in a marketplace that boasts the best selection of Canadian books and magazines you’ll find anywhere. There’s plenty to see and do at Canada’s largest FREE book and magazine festival!

Alice Munro Short Story Festival: June 1  – June 4, 2017, Wingham, Ontario

The Alice Munro Festival of the Short Story (AMFSS) stages an annual literary festival that honours Alice Munro and nurtures emerging writers through workshops and onstage presentations that celebrate the short story.

Author Festivals

International Festival of Authors Toronto: Oct 19- Oct 29, 2017, Toronto, Ontario

Toronto’s International Festival of Authors (IFOA) is a celebration of words and ideas, of writers and readers.

The Festival brings together the world’s best writers of contemporary literature for 11 days of readings, interviews, artist talks, round table discussions, public book signings and a number of special events. The IFOA takes place at  Harbourfront Centre, where the city meets the lake.

Festival of Authors: Evening (either March 31st or April 1st), Ajax, Ontario

All are welcome at this PUBLIC EVENT! The exciting evening unfolds between 7:00 PM and 10:00 PM, and features:

  • entertaining interviews and inspiring author readings
  • opportunities to mingle with Canadian Authors, fellow writers and avid readers
  • voting for the winners of our Story Starters Contest
  • exciting prizes and wondrous magic!

gritLIT  Hamilton’s Readers & Writers Festival: April 6 – April 9, 2017, Hamilton, Ontario

gritLIT is Hamilton’s annual literary festival, a four-day celebration of Canadian authors. Since its inception in 2004, the festival has built a reputation with readers in the Golden Horseshoe as a place to get “up close and personal” with their favourite authors and to discover new voices.


Algonquin in June Writing Retreat: June 2 – June 4, 2017- Algonquin Park, Ontario

From the website: “Three days of instruction, inspiration and creativity. Award yourself with time away from distractions, with no dishes to do and wonderful food at every  meal, as you sit with your feet up and write in the most beautiful wilderness setting in Ontario.”

Pelee Island Writing Residencies: Various Dates — Pelee Island, Ontario

Taking part in a Pelee Island writing retreat gives authors the opportunity to focus on their work, free of distraction. The retreat price includes accommodations, meals, and workshops, with the time and space needed to work on a manuscript, while benefiting from inclusion in a creative community. Each retreat offers writers the chance to work on their own and also take part in facilitated workshop sessions, which will combine group discussion and individual text critiques. The 7-day retreat will include two master classes, and the 5-day retreat will have one master class.  

There are also 6-day self-directed writing residencies available. The price includes accommodations and meals, but there will be no instructors or workshops. A self-directed residency is a low cost alternative if you just need time away to focus on your writing, and you will have plenty of time to write, read, walk, and explore the Island.