Nicola Davison


Nicola Davison is a writer and portrait photographer, living in Dartmouth. She studied English at Dalhousie University and was on the board of directors with the WFNS from 2017 to 2020.
In 2016, she completed the Alistair Macleod Mentorship Program, polishing her first novel, In the Wake, with Carol Bruneau. It won the Margaret & John Savage First Book Award,  the Miramichi Reader’s Best First Book award and was a finalist for the Dartmouth Book Award.
Her second novel Decoding Dot Grey (Spring 2022) is a coming-of-age story about a  quirky young woman working at an animal shelter, struggling to find a connection with the world. It was nominated for a White Pine Award and won the 2023 Ann Connor Brimer Book Award for YA.
Keep up to date with her online at


In the Wake, Decoding Dot Grey

Nimbus Publishing


2019 Margaret & John Savage First Book, 2019 The Miramichi Reader’s Best First Book

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Recommended Experience Levels

The Writers’ Federation of Nova Scotia (WFNS) recommends that participants in any given workshop have similar levels of creative writing and / or publication experience. This ensures that each participant gets value from the workshop⁠ and is presented with information, strategies, and skills that suit their career stage. The “Recommended experience level” section of each workshop description refers to the following definitions used by WFNS.

  • New writers: those with less than two years’ creative writing experience and/or no short-form publications (e.g., short stories, personal essays, or poems in literary magazines, journals, anthologies, or chapbooks).
  • Emerging writers: those with more than two years’ creative writing experience and/or numerous short-form publications.
  • Early-career authors: those with 1 or 2 book-length publications or the equivalent in book-length and short-form publications.
  • Established authors: those with 3 or 4 book-length publications.
  • Professional authors: those with 5 or more book-length publications.

Please keep in mind that each form of creative writing (fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and writing for children and young adults) provides you with a unique set of experiences and skills, so you might consider yourself an ‘established author’ in one form but a ‘new writer’ in another.

For “intensive” and “masterclass” creative writing workshops, which provide more opportunities for peer-to-peer feedback, the recommended experience level should be followed closely.

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