WANL: Programs and services

WANL programs and services

Current programs and services

The Writers' Alliance of Newfoundland and Labrador aims to contribute to a supportive environment for writing in the province, working to serve the needs of our writers. Since these needs are many and various, our organization reflects the diversity of the writing community. WANL is involved with a number of projects and activities designed to meet our objectives.

Public readings

WANL administers various readings throughout most of the year, which feature one or two readers each time. These readings foster greater public recognition of Newfoundland and Labrador writing and provide exposure, confidence, and feedback to individual readers. Some readings feature out-of-province writers, offering local writers and the general public the opportunity to meet and network with nationally acclaimed authors. While most readings are held in the greater St. Johnís area, WANL endeavours to hold two to three readings per year in other communities across the Island and in Labrador.

Manuscript Evaluation Service

This service is available to writers at all stages of their careers and is particularly valuable for emerging writers who have not yet broken into the market and are seeking critical feedback. The program allows writers to submit their work for evaluation by a professional, established writer. The Writers' Alliance matches manuscripts with evaluators, based on genre and evaluator expertise. Click here for more information.

Mentorship program

This program is designed to serve the needs of emerging Newfoundland and Labrador writers who are committed to the development of their writing. It is aimed at writers who are on the cusp of professional publication and who have a substantial work-in-progress. Emphasis is on producing a work ready for the marketplace. Apprentices are matched with senior writers, with whom they work on a one-to-one basis over an intensive five-month period. This program is available once a year, usually beginning in February, pending funding. Please see the current call for applications here.

Literary awards

WANL presents several literary awards, both for new and seasoned writers, in a variety of genres. For more information on these awards, visit our WANL literary awards page.


Since 2001, WANL has partnered with the City of St. John's on the poetry on the buses project. Poems by Newfoundland and Labrador poets are selected and printed on durable posters measuring 35" x 11" for use in the interior of city buses. In October 2005, the third installment of MetroVerse was launched, with poems also printed on posters measuring 30" x 139" for use on the exterior of buses. This project brings culture to the public in a unique and positive manner and provides unprecedented exposure to our poets. WANL is working on bringing another installment of Metroverse onto the buses.

Professional development workshops

Workshops are offered at various times throughout the year, especially over the AGM weekend, where WANL members and the general public participate in workshops and panel discussions aimed at the development and promotion of their work. Over the years, workshops have included such topics as book reviewing, play writing, script writing, marketing, writing for radio, editing, creative writing for youths, and others. Workshops have also been offered in Corner Brook, Deer Lake, Gander, Happy Valley-Goose Bay, and St. John's.

WORD newsletter

WORD is a members' newsletter. Features include "New on the shelf by WANL members" and "Diary of a Writer," as well as various articles aimed at the professional development and interest of writers. The newsletter also serves as an important means of information sharing among members and offers news of employment and other opportunities. WORD is distributed to WANL members and to various local and national organizations.

WANL Weekly

WANL produces a weekly e-bulletin that posts upcoming literary events (workshops, readings and launches) and other announcements of interest to writers (funding opportunities, contests, markets and various deadlines).

Past initiatives

Adult Basic Literacy (ABE) work

WANL has participated in a number of projects over the past several years to write and produce material relevant to our province for use in Level 1 ABE classrooms. These projects have produced cassette tapes and various readers / workbooks. Savoury on the Tongue, an anthology of writing from Newfoundland and Labrador accessible to both learners and the general public, was released in 2003. Savoury on the Tongue: A Study Guide was released in 2005. Both are available to literacy groups across the country and province free of charge.

In addition, many of the literacy publications produced by the Writers' Alliance can be found online through the National Adult Literacy Database by visiting http://www.nald.ca/ and following the link to the NALD library.

Literary Arts Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador

In 2005, the Alliance played a key role in the establishment of the Literary Arts Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador–a visionary development that is based on collaborative ventures with the corporate and private sector in growing the provincial literary sector. The Foundation is a charitable organization mandated to promote the appreciation and development of literature through various educational and training programs. http://www.literaryartsnl.com/

Ferryland Lighthouse Reading Series

In the summers of 2007 and 2008, WANL partnered with Ferryland Lighthouse Picnics to offer the Ferryland Lighthouse Reading Series. The series is currently on hiatus.
The Writers' Alliance of Newfoundland and Labrador gratefully acknowledges the financial support of
the Canada Council for the Arts, the Department of Tourism, Culture and Recreation, Government of Newfoundland and Labrador, and the City of St. John's.