Gwen Martin

Gwen has been a writer and editor almost since the invention of the cell phone. During her decades-long professional career she produced political speeches, grant proposals, and geoscience reports for clients across Canada. Between writing and teaching gigs she jumped freight trains, played lounge piano, and prospected for gold. She also published three history books: Once Upon a Mine, For Love of Stone, and Gesner’s Dream.

Gwen’s CNF works appear in Geist Magazine, The Antigonish Review, Mom Egg Review, Funny Pearls, Hippocampus Magazine, and elsewhere. She currently is writing a mystery series featuring a forensic geologist named Beryl Strand who lives in a saltmarsh New Brunswick village. Gwen is also a professional member with The Writers’ Union of Canada, Crime Writers of Canada (as its Atlantic Canada regional representative), and Writers’ Federation of New Brunswick.


Gesner’s Dream (2003)

For Love of Stone (1990)

Once Upon a Mine (1983)


Won 1st and/or 2nd prize in various writing competitions in the 2010s (e.g., Geist Magazine Work Shanty Contest, WFNB Narrative Nonfiction Prize, WFNB Dawn Watson Memorial Prize for Single Poem).

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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