Michelle Porter, President
Michelle Porter is a writer and academic with a PhD in Geography from Memorial University. Porter worked as a journalist and won the 2005 Atlantic Journalism Gold Award for a story about the writing of Sheree Fitch’s first young adult novel. Now she works with the Newfoundland Quarterly and is leading the development of online storytelling for the magazine. Recently, Porter was long-listed for the 2016 CBC Poetry Prize for a collection of poetry called “Between you and home.”
Glenn Deir is a former CBC television reporter. He used over three decades worth of journalistic black humour to write his novel The Money Shot, published by Breakwater Books in fall 2016. His memoir, Sick Joke: Cancer, Japan and Back Again, was shortlisted for a NL Book Award in 2011.
Amanda Labonté divides her time between writing and co-running a thriving business. Her young adult novel, Call of the Sea, was published in November 2015 with a sequel planned for April 2018 by Engen Books. Amanda lives in St. John’s with her husband and their two continuously growing children.
Kelley Power, Secretary
Kelley Power has punched a dozen years in corporate communications both abroad and in Newfoundland and Labrador. She currently splits her time between communications consulting and dabbling in all types of writing. A liberal sprinkling of literary and creative interests keep her in touch with her academic roots in Geography and Humanities. She also volunteers with the Public Domain Review as a social media officer
Terry Doyle, St. John’s/Avalon Representative
Terry Doyle is an aspiring writer, currently working on his first novel. He studies fiction writing at Memorial University, and is a member of The Naked Parade writer’s group.
Andrew Peacock, St. John’s/Avalon Representative
Andrew Peacock worked as a veterinarian in Newfoundland from 1982 to 2010. His memoir, “Creatures of the Rock” was released by Doubleday Canada in 2014, long listed for the Leacock medal and won the 2014 Newfoundland and Labrador Book Award for non-fiction. As well as writing with the Saltwater Writers’ Circle, Andrew is involved with photography, running, bicycling and the outdoors.
Gary Collins, Central/Burin Representative
Gary’s writing career began when he was asked to write eulogies for deceased friends and family. Now a critically acclaimed author, he has written eleven books, including the children’s illustrated book What Colour is the Ocean?, which he co-wrote with his granddaughter, Maggie Rose Parsons. That book won an Atlantic Book Award: The Lillian Shepherd Memorial Award for Excellence in Illustration. His book Mattie Mitchell: Newfoundland’s Greatest Frontiersman has been adapted for film.
Mervyn Dean, Western/Labrador Representative
Mervyn Dean is a Newfoundlander by descent, a Boeing 767 having descended from 39,000 feet to deposit him in St. John’s. Besides having written the obligatory academic papers he has also written various supposedly humorous articles. He is now trying writing his second novel, because the first one didn’t work out and had to be put aside until inspiration strikes. Mervyn lives in Corner Brook with his wife and 12 year-old mutt.
Regina Best, Member-at-Large
Regina Best has been active in the arts community for the past 25 years and has been the Program Coordinator for the Provincial Arts and Letters Awards since 1993. She has a great love and respect for the written word and believes that by encouraging our writers of today, we are building the literary foundation of our future. She currently lives in Conception Bay South.
Beth Ryan, Member-at-Large
Beth Ryan’s collection of short fiction, What is Invisible, won the Margaret and John Savage First Book Award in 2004 and was shortlisted for two other awards. Her stories have been published in anthologies and literary journals and have won awards from the Cuffer Short Fiction Competition, the Arts and Letters Competition, The Victoria School of Writing and the Atlantic Writing Competition. Beth works in counselling and post-secondary education and is currently writing her first novel.
Philip Patey, Member-at-Large
Philip Patey spends most of his time writing when he is not tending perennial flowers and volunteering with several community and provincial organizations. He has read his poetry at the Eric’s Time venue of the March Hare, is a member of Scribblers’ Ink; a Gander-based writers’ group, and has served on the WANL Board as the Central/Burin representative for several years.
Hillary MacInnis is a second year student at Memorial University, double majoring in Communication Studies and English. She intends to attend a school of journalism upon completion of her degree. She hopes to someday soon be a published author, and is currently working on her first novel.
Denise Flint, Past President
Denise Flint is a freelance journalist living in St. Philips with her husband, a house full of animals and books, and a wonderful view of the ocean. She believes in the healing powers of good grammar and good wine. Those are the facts. Everything else is subject to change without notice.