Archive for the ‘Intrepid Pens News’ Category

Intrepid Pens is thrilled to have been invited to participate again this year in the Heart of the City Festival in Vancouver’s DTES. Last year The Pens joined Megaphone and Studio Society for a poetry reading, and this year we’re opening up our November 3rd “Read.Write.Share” session with Sarah at W2 Media Cafe to the public. That way those aspiring writers who’ve wondered what we get up to in those weekly meetings can come on in see for themselves. We’re looking forward to meeting new friends and hearing new poets, and can’t wait to share some of the writing that results here on the blog. For more information on the festival, click here.


Just thought I’d do a quick post to let everyone know what we’ve been up to these past few months, and what we’ve got planned for Fall 2012.

Looking back:

We continue to enjoy (and be super grateful for) our home at W2 MediaCafe, where we meet Saturdays, and read and write over coffee and tea. In February The Pens participated in World Community Arts Day with CACV. In May The Pens were invited to participate in Papergirl Vancouver, and in July their work was on display at the Roundhouse Community Centre. In June The Pens were featured on Alicia Costa’s Vancouver Coop RadioStorytelling Show, and last month The Pens joined Megaphone Magazine for a well-attended night of poetry at Cafe Deux Soleils.

Looking forward:

Starting in September, meetings at W2 Media Cafe will be open to both women and men – an exciting development for a group that has so far been women-only. Meetings will be led by The Pens’ talented volunteer facilitator Sarah Stephen, who’s been with us for over a year. Plans are also in the works to offer additional programming in the DTES (specifically an exciting and intensive writing workshop resulting in the production of a chapbook (working title: “Listen Up! Important poems and prose by women from Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside”).

So, all good things.

But we don’t/can’t do it alone. The Pens would not be possible without the generous support of friends, family, and sponsors and we humbly invite you to consider a donation to The Pens so that we might continue to provide opportunities for reading and writing in the Downtown Eastside — and the sharing, healing, and growing that result. We accept (with happy hearts) time, love, supplies, and – of course – contributions of the monetary variety. Please visit our website’s “Contribute Page” to learn more.

Likewise, if you know an aspiring writer in the community, please feel free to direct them to our online calendar – we’d love to have them.


Friday, July 20 2012 (Cafe Deux Soleils)

Megaphone and Intrepid Pens present an evening of readings from the Downtown Eastside. The event will feature powerful readings of poetry and prose from emerging writers from Vancouver’s inner-city.”

Intrepid Pens was honoured to have been invited to read on Alicia Costa’s “Storytelling Show” on Vancouver Coop Radio last week (June 3, 2012).

Below is a link to her show’s site and a link to the archived recording:

Papergirls Vancouver

Posted: June 3, 2012 in Intrepid Pens News

We had a fun, creative, and inspiring session with Michelle and Lelainia from PAPERGIRL yesterday and are now even more excited to be part of the PAPERGIRL Vancouver 2012 Project.  Here’s a bit more information about PAPERGIRL and their awesome team of volunteers: Look for Intrepid Pens work this summer at the Roundhouse Community Centre and on the streets of the city!

“The Pens” have enjoyed reading Room Magazine over the past few years (the Room Team generously donated boxes and boxes of back-issues for our consumption in 2009). So we’re *really* looking forward to a visit from one of the  “Growing Room Collective” volunteers this Saturday (Feb. 25th). Jennifer Z. will guest teach a session on writing and Room and “getting in print” and more.

Room is “Canada’s oldest literary journal by, for, and about women. Published quarterly by a group of volunteers based in Vancouver, Room showcases fiction, poetry, reviews, art work, interviews and profiles about the female experience…Room is a space where women can speak, connect, and showcase their creativity. Each quarter we publish original, thought-provoking works that reflect women’s strength, sensuality, vulnerability, and wit…” Good fit, eh?

This past weekend, Mary Bennett and a team of volunteers from the Community Arts Council of Vancouver (CACV) attended an Intrepid Pens session to work with the group as part of the “SHARE THE LOVE” Project for World Community Arts Day.

I was so disappointed to have missed it (the first session I haven’t led in three years), but our amazing volunteer Sarah was there to facilitate and it was a super-successful day. The group wrote love letters and made collages for “community artists who make our city a better place”.

To learn more about World Community Arts Day, click here. And click here to learn more about CACV. Note: This isn’t the first time that Mary Bennett of CACV has reached out and made an effort to include “The Pens” in exciting community arts projects and events. We’re so grateful.

Below are some pics snapped by CACV intern, Elena:

Last month we were treated to a yummy meal at the Old Spaghetti Factory (Gastown) c/o generous manager Chris Tsui and lovely server Caleigh. I’d asked in December if they might be able to “help us out” (with a discount, perhaps) and they responded with a delicious multi-course meal completely free-of-charge. Such a nice way for a local establishment to acknowledge the good creative work “The Pens” are doing. Thanks guys!

This Saturday (January 28th) Intrepid Pens will have the opportunity to meet (and learn from!) Vancouver writer, editor, and teacher Jenn Farrell. Jenn has graciously agreed to guest-teach a session for the group, and we couldn’t be more grateful.

I just know the group will be inspired by Jenn, who’s “the author of two collections of short stories: The Devil You Know (Anvil Press, 2010), and Sugar Bush & Other Stories (Anvil Press, 2006).

“Her stories have previously appeared in Prism, subTerrain, West Coast Line and Forget magazine. She has acted as reader and editor for several winning entries in the 3-Day Novel Contest, and in 2006, made her broadcast debut as a judge for Book Television’s coverage of the event.

“She is the two-time winner of the Vancouver Courier Fiction Contest, recipient of the 2002 Maclean-Hunter Endowment Prize for non-fiction, a former contributor to CBC Radio and former managing editor of subTerrain magazine. She is a board member of the B.C. Association of Magazine Publishers.”

She’s also one of the most talented local writers I know. Thanks Jenn!

For more on Jenn, visit her website @

“J” – a participant in the IdeFix program in Berlin and a member of Sonja’s English Class – heard about her colleagues’ “Pen Friendship” with Intrepid Pens and was inspired to write to us. We were particularly excited by the poem she shared. Below is what she sent, and in the Comments are our first few replies.

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