Fiona Tinwei Lam


Fiona Tinwei Lam’s first book of poetry, Intimate Distances, was a finalist for the City of Vancouver Book Award. Her work has been published in literary magazines Canada-wide and in over sixteen anthologies (Canada, Hong Kong, and the US), and has been twice featured on local transit as part of B.C.’s Poetry in Transit, as well as aired on CBC Radio. She is a co-editor of and contributor to the literary non-fiction anthology, Double Lives, published by McGill-Queen’s University Press. Her second book of poetry, Enter the Chrysanthemum, came out in 2009. Last year her work was selected for The Best Canadian Poetry in English 2010. She is a regular contributor to the award-winning online news magazine, The Tyee. She recently edited The Bright Well, a collection of contemporary Canadian poetry about facing cancer. Oolichan Books will be publishing The Rainbow Rocket, her first book for children (about a boy who deals with the loss of a grandparent), in 2013.

Fiona Tinwei Lam

SiWC Workshops

Friday 3:30pm

How can we avoid sentimentality, clichés, and predictability when we write about our children, parents, grandparents or other family relationships or dynamics?  How can we to get to the heart of an experience in a vivid and original way, while communicating something that transcends the specific incident or individual?

We will examine a few illustrative examples of superb published writing on family-oriented themes, and use them to explore different strategies (through various writing exercises) to mine the richness of our memory and experience in order to create the foundation for effective and moving poems that have emotional power.