Frank Macdonald




Frank Macdonald is a writer living with his partner, artist Virginia McCoy, in his hometown of Inverness, Cape Breton, returning there after fulfilling his mandatory tour of duty in plants, factories, construction work and fast food cooking in other parts of North America. He earns his living as a columnist and reporter with The Inverness Oran, a weekly newspaper, and has won journalism awards for both his humourous/satirical weekly columns and his editorial writing.

When not escaping into the works of other writers, Frank tackles his literary interests, most notably the novel. His first novel, A Forest for Calum (Cape Breton University Press) was published in 2005, and was nominated for the Dartmouth Book Award, and was long-listed for IMPAC-Dublin Award. His second novel, A Possible Madness (Cape Breton University Press-2012) was nominated for Dartmouth Book Award and was also long-listed for the IMPAC-Dublin Award.

In 2010 Cape Breton University Press published a children’s novella, T.R.’s Adventure at Angus the Wheeler’s, illustrated by artist Virginia McCoy.

In 2011, his one-act play, Her Wake won Best Canadian Production at the Liverpool International Theatre Festival.

In 2014, his third novel, Tinker & Blue was published (Cape Breton University Press).

He has also published two collections of newspaper/magazine columns, Assuming I’m Right (Cecibu 1990) and How To Cook Your Cat (Cecibu-2003). In 1992-4 Mulgrave Road Theatre produced and toured a one-man play written by Macdonald depicting a day in the life of a newspaper columnist, based on the first collection of columns and also titled Assuming I’m Right.

Macdonald has also had poems published in a number of journals, as well a short stories, and song lyrics have been arranged and recorded by musicians. Frank has given public reading on numerous occasions for numerous occasions ranging from the CBC to the school classroom.



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Recommended Experience Levels

The Writers’ Federation of Nova Scotia (WFNS) recommends that each workshop’s participants share a level or range of writing / publication experience. This is to ensure each participant gets value from the workshop⁠ and is presented with information, strategies, and skills that suit their current writing priorities.

To this end, the “Recommended experience level” section of each workshop description refers to the following definitions developed by WFNS:

  • New writers: those who have been writing creatively for less than two years and/or have not yet been published in any form.
  • Emerging writers: those who have been writing creatively for less than five years and/or have some short publications (poems, stories, or essays) in literary magazines, journals, or anthologies.
  • Established writers/authors: those with numerous publications in magazines, journals, or anthologies and/or a full-length book publication.
  • Professional authors: those with two or more full-length book publications.

For “intensive” and “masterclass” workshops, which provide more opportunities for peer-to-peer (that is, participant-to-participant) feedback, the recommended experience level should be followed.

For all other workshops, the recommended experience level is just that—a recommendation—and we encourage potential participants to follow their own judgment when registering.

If you’re uncertain of your experience level with regard to any particular workshop, please feel free to contact us at