Creative Writing Guild offers home for the literally minded


Students with a passion for – or even just a casual interest in – the written word can check out the Kwantlen Creative Writing Guild to meet other literary-minded students in a relaxed but stimulating environment.

Winston Le, a creative writing major and guild secretary, says the guild aims to promote the building of community among student writers by providing a place for student writers of all types to meet, improve their skills and share their love of the craft.

Writing of all forms and genres is encouraged. Poetry is popular at meetings because it is the easiest form to workshop in a meeting setting. Guild writers also bring in other forms of writing including prose stories, plays and screenplays. In the case of longer works, copies can be sent home for Guild members to look over in their spare time.

The Creative Writing Guild holds weekly meetings in Birch 106 on Kwantlen’s Surrey campus. At the meetings, new and old members alike discuss what they are reading, show and workshop their creative writing projects and socialize with like-minded peers. Time is also set aside for the planning of a variety of other writing-related events hosted by the guild.  While the guild is mostly made up of creative writing students, it encourages students of all backgrounds to join.

The guild was originally formed in 2009 and then resurrected in 2011. “We’re more community-oriented,” says Le of the revamped guild, “in setting up more events outside the classroom like the monthly slams and readings.”

The guild hosts a variety of events in addition to weekly meetings, including a monthly Slam on the third Thursday of each month at the Grassroots café on Surrey campus. Slams are spoken word events where writers are given the opportunity to perform their poetry for an audience of anyone who wants to attend. An open mic night is also held at the end of the semester, where students can show off what they’ve put together over the previous few months, and last fall, the guild hosted a reading and performance workshop with the late Vancouver-based spoken word artist Zaccheus Jackson.

The guild is planning many more events for the new school year.

A Poetry of the Month contest is in the works, which would allow Kwantlen writers to submit their best work for a shot at a $50 prize, and having their winning piece displayed on a poster at the university. The guild also plans to head to Granville Island in October to attend the Vancouver Writers’ Festival.

New members can expect an opportunity to hone their craft while forming friendships in a close-knit community of student writers. Writers at all skill levels are welcome, from seasoned literary veterans to hobbyists just starting out and looking for a place to learn. According to Le, members don’t need to bring anything other than an enthusiasm for writing to their weekly meetings. The Guild is open to suggestions from both new and old members, and Le says, “We want to know what they want out of this group.”

Further information can be found at the Kwantlen Creative Writing Guild Facebook page, including dates and times for meetings and events. Questions can be directed to

Joseph Keller

Joseph Keller is a student journalist at Kwantlen Polytechnic University. He is also a regular contributor to the Runner, KPU's student publication.

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