The Soccer Game 20″ X 24″ Mixed Media on Canvas

The Soccer Game 20

Between writing projects, I read good books and fellow poets. Sometimes, time and other obligations permitting, I’ll travel with Margot. When all else gives me spurts of free time, I paint.
The Soccer Game was inspired by watching my grandson’s soccer game in South Surrey a couple of weeks ago.
To see more paintings, see below. Cheers.


Dr. William Hay Book Launch

Dr. William Hay Book Launch

Book Launch
Love Between the Sacred and Profane
St. James’ Anglican Church
303 East Cordova Street
Vancouver – in the lower room
Wednesday, 11 December, 2013 7pm – 8:30
$2 of very book sold will be donated to the St. James’ Street Outreach Initiative.
Book price $12
Refreshments will be served
Enquiries: call Ben at 604-535-2977

My Weekend in the Nunnery.

Now that I have your attention, let me tell you about our 2nd Annual Federation of BC Writers’ Retreat.

On Thursday, November 14th, six ardent scribblers were warmly welcomed to the Rosemary Heights Retreat Centre in South Surrey.

Built in the 1960’s as Saint Euphrasia School For Girls, the Sisters of the Good Shepherd soon converted the school to a home for unwed mothers.  Next it became a school for vulnerable children. And finally a retreat centre under the auspices of the Catholic Archdiocese of Vancouver.

Our rooms for the weekend in the Saint Joseph Wing – once the Sisters’ Convent – were pleasant and up-to-date with comfortable beds, desks with lamps, and en suite bathrooms. We had the use of a cozy sitting room – and a dining room – for small gatherings. We enjoyed a kitchen with coffee, tea and snacks, and a spacious meeting room with tables, chairs and white board.

All the meals were delicious, and served by a friendly staff in a downstairs dining room. Special diets were accommodated. For those who desired the distraction of computer-messaging for research, wi-fi was available throughout. I discovered a fully equipped exercise room and, of course, the grounds provide contemplative walks.

Nine additional writers joined us for Friday and Saturday workshops.

Past President George Opacic presentated Writing for Film and Digital Publishing.

Yours truly provided workshops in Dynamic Presentation, and on Getting Published (the pitfalls and dangers in selecting a potential publisher as well how to write an effective “elevator speech”, how to write a synopsis and a query letter).

Lois Peterson gave four fabulous workshops on Character, Voice, Point-of-View and Show vs Tell. Lois and Ben also provided Blue Pencil sessions on request. Lois kept everyone hopping by instigating various writing challenges, and discussions, throughout the weekend.

All in all this was a fabulous weekend.

A spiritual retreat? What activity could be more spiritual than writing?

Our most sincere thanks go to the friendly and helpful staff at Rosemary Heights.

Bravo and bless every one of you. You were angels. 

Ben Nuttall-Smith, President   Federation of BC Writers