Susanna Kearsley


A former museum curator, Susanna Kearsley brings her own passion for research and travel to her writing, weaving modern-day romantic suspense with fact-based historical adventure and intrigue. Her most recent novel is the New York Times and Globe & Mail  bestselling The Firebird, nominated this year for a National Reader’s Choice Award and a RITA Award. Her books have been translated and published in more than twenty countries. She lives east of Toronto, Ontario.

SiWC Workshops

Saturday 3:30pm

More than twenty years since its first publication, Diana Gabaldon's first book, Outlander, returned to the NYT bestseller list this summer, in response to the debut of the Outlander TV series. That got us wondering about our panelists' first experiences on the list: where were they when they found out? What difference did it make to their careers? Did they buy nicer pyjamas to work in? How did they celebrate? This panel traditionally wanders a great deal of ground with a lot of laughter, so bring your questions and enjoy!

Thursday 1:30pm

Hemingway once said, "When writing a novel a writer should create living people." This master class takes that advice to heart. Whether you spend time carefully creating profiles for your characters before you write them, or let them develop organically out of the story, we’ll explore ways you can go even deeper—to write three-dimensional people who breathe on the page and connect with your readers.

Friday 1:30pm

There are advantages and challenges involved in the decision between writing in third person and in first. Susanna, since she uses both in all her books, and switches POV according to the novel’s needs, will share her own experience and observations and techniques, and help explore the choices that you face in your own writing.

Sunday 9:30am

Ever stayed up way later than you should have because you couldn't put down the book you were reading? No matter what genre, tension is the key to compelling stories. Sounds simple enough, but managing tension well is tough. Join our talented panel for a discussion on techniques, tricks, and tips to keep readers turning the page.

Saturday 10:30am

What do you do if the place where you’re setting your story no longer exists, or has changed over time beyond all recognition, or never was real to begin with? As a writer of cross-genre books that can sometimes span centuries, Susanna Kearsley has faced all these problems. She’ll share the techniques she’s developed to deal with them, helping you find those lost overgrown paths through the woods, or build new ones.