Writers in Residence:
When the Haig-Brown Institute was in its early planning stages in 2003, the main task was to find ways of continuing the work and spirit of Roderick and Ann Haig-Brown. One of the most obvious of these was writing, given the 25 books and many articles Roderick had published. When the house and lands were sold to the B.C. government for greenbelt a couple of years before Haig-Brown’s death in 1976, he had expressed a wish that it be used for deserving writers and conservationists. It was decided that a Writer in Residence would be ideal.
The Institute was honoured when our first application was approved in 2004 by the Canada Council for the Arts and continues to be most grateful for the Council’s support. The Museum at Campbell River now runs the program.
The residency is a fitting use for the house of an internationally-known writer such as Roderick Haig-Brown. He and his wife Ann’s 3500-volume library remains in the house and serves as inspiration for the residents, as does the river flowing by the house.
Current Writer in Residence
Previous holders of the residency
In the winter of 2004-5 Haig-Brown House hosted the inaugural writer, BC’s Don McKay .
He was followed by Saskatchewan’s David Carpenter in 2005-6 .
In our third winter we hosted Myrna Kostash from Alberta. In the fall of 2010 Kostash won the $20,000 Matt Cohen Award from the Writer's Trust of Canada for lifetime achievement in writing.
For the winter of 2007-8 the writer was Brian Brett of Saltspring Island.
Brett was followed by Newfoundland writer Marjorie Doyle for our fifth winter.
The 2009-2010 writer in residence was Harry Thurston, from Nova Scotia.
Patricia Robertson, from Whitehorse, Yukon, held the residency for 2010-2011.
The holders of the residency are all senior Canadian writers and it is a major honour for the community to host them.