Virtual road trip brings Vancouver writers to Port Alberni

Bill Arnott and Frances Sullivan will be the featured readers at Alberni Valley Words on Fire

Bill Arnott and Frances Sullivan will be the featured readers at Alberni Valley Words on Fire on June 10. (SUBMITTED PHOTOS)

Bill Arnott and Frances Sullivan will be the featured readers at Alberni Valley Words on Fire on June 10. (SUBMITTED PHOTOS)

Two Vancouver writers will grace the virtual stage at the next spoken word open mic event in Port Alberni.

Vancouver author and poet Bill Arnott will read at Alberni Valley Words on Fire (AVWOF) on Wednesday June 10 at 7 p.m., live online via Zoom teleconferencing. The latest literary event from AVWOF’s home venue, Char’s Landing, is part of the Federation of BC Writers’ (FBCW) Quite Determined Road Trip online tour.

Arnott is the bestselling author of Whistler Independent Book Awards Finalist Gone Viking: A Travel Saga, Allan’s Wishes, and Dromomania. His Indie Folk CD is Studio 6, and his column, Bill Arnott’s Beat, runs in literary journals and magazines around the globe.

“Bill Arnott’s highly polished performance poetry is a delight to hear and see,” said Port Alberni author and AVWOF member Derek Hanebury. “This guy is a true poetry devotee.”

Arnott will be joined on the virtual stage by content writer and editor Frances Sullivan, a blogger at Zigzagging Toward Zen. Sullivan, who has some Port Alberni roots, is finishing her second book, Adopting Elizabeth, while outlining a sequel to her first novel, On the Seventh Day. A research editor, she has contributed to Doug MacKenzie’s World War II memoir Tail End Charlie and to The Fearless Life Guide: An All To Love Project by M.J. Robertson.

There will be open mic availability, with signup prior to the event online and before the event in Zoom.

Char’s Landing is hosting the events, bringing the open mic stage from the iconic former church building on Argyle Street in Port Alberni to writers around British Columbia and the Yukon. Participants sign in via Zoom teleconferencing using a link provided on Facebook or via email, and are not required to download the Zoom app, although the app does streamline the process a bit.

“This online tour is bringing writers and readers together around the province at a time when brick-and-mortar book launches and readings aren’t possible because of concerns about social distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Jacqueline Carmichael, the Port Alberni resident and FBCW board member who is organizing the tour.

“Open mic participants and listeners from around the globe are invited. We have had people tuning in from all over,” Carmichael added. “It’s really lovely that Charlene Patterson is providing the ‘venue’ and the impetus to bring the writing community and those who love new Canadian literature together.”

For additional information about the event, see Alberni Valley Words on Fire or Char’s Landing on Facebook, or visit the FBCW’s website at



Bill Arnott and Frances Sullivan will be the featured readers at Alberni Valley Words on Fire on June 10. (SUBMITTED PHOTOS)

Bill Arnott and Frances Sullivan will be the featured readers at Alberni Valley Words on Fire on June 10. (SUBMITTED PHOTOS)

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