Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Would Pierre Berton Be Welcome as a Writer in Residence at His Old House?

The Writer's Trust of Canada is taking over the Berton House writer's retreat in Dawson City, Yukon. What the linked CBC story doesn't tell you is why it had to be taken over in the first place. Ken McGoogan reported in the Globe back in August [thank you, G&M, for making your back articles inaccessible; real slick] that a Canada Council jury declined funding for one of the house's guests, sci-fi writer Robert J. Sawyer. Smacks of snobbery (not elitism, since chances are Sawyer is more accomplished, objectively speaking, than the jurors in question). I guess Sawyer was probably too popular a writer for their tastes. Pierre Berton was also a popular writer--and continues to be. Kinda makes you wonder, eh...

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