Gather 'Round

Gather ‘Round: An Evening of Storytelling and Song was a winter holiday concert whose proceeds benefitted the Alistair MacLeod Mentorship Program. Held on December 5, 2019, at St. Andrew’s United Church (Halifax), the event featured eight writers and performers:

  • hosting by Kayla Hounsell (First Degree)
  • an excerpt from “Lighting Up the Dark,” written by Lisa Moore (Something for Everyone) and performed by Costas Halavrezos, former host of CBC Radio’s Maritime Noon and now host of Nimbus Publishing’s podcast, Book Me!
  • an excerpt from “Wonder About Parents” written and performed by Alexander MacLeod (Light Lifting), professor at Saint Mary’s University, winner of the prestigious O. Henry Prize, and son of Alistair MacLeod
  • an excerpt from The Reindeer Herder, written by Amanda Peters and performed by Stephanie Domet, novelist, co-chair of the Afterwords Literary Festival, and Peters’ former mentor in the Alistair MacLeod Mentorship Program
  • musical performances by singer-songwriter Ryan MacGrath and the Halifax Gay Men’s Chorus, who previewed their holiday concert, Our Gay Apparel

Tickets for the event were $20 (or $15 for students).


The Writers’ Federation of Nova Scotia is grateful to BOYNECLARKE LLP and Gordon Stirrett Wealth Management for their investment in this event.

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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