Meeting Reports

Authors evening April 18, 2023

by June Coxon

On April 18 we held our second in-person meeting since 2020. For the first time we offered a hybrid meeting and in addition to those attending our Authors’ Evening meeting at the Lord Elgin Hotel four others participated via Skype.

The first author to speak that night was Darren Préfontaine, editor, researcher, author at the Gabriel Dumont Institute in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. He discussed the biography he wrote about one of our long time Club members, called Changing Canadian History: The Life and Works of Olive Patricia Dickason, which was printed in 2021. Speaking to us via Skype from his office in Saskatoon, he began by recalling that in 2012, after Olive’s death, her daughters donated her artifacts to the Gabriel Dumont Institute, where many of them are now displayed in the Olive Dickason Room. He paid tribute to Olive’s daughter, Anne, for “making his book possible” and mentioned that the interviews she conducted with a number of people who recalled their connections with her mother appear at the end of his book. Darren mentioned Olive’s best known book, written in the 1980s, and pointed out how much it changed the thinking about Indigenous people in Canada and abroad. Although, as a white settler, he had trepidation about writing Olive’s biography, Darren said it was “a pleasure to write” and he likes to think her spirit lives on with with us.

Club member, journalist and author, Carol Goddard, who lives in Cornwall, Ontario, attended in person. She spoke about her children’s book, The Morewood Memorial: Remembering Their Service Forever, that was published in 2021. Goddard discussed what prompted her to write this story and showed us some of the original oil paintings created by artist Carrie A. Keller to illustrate her book. She explained that this historical fiction book is about a little girl who stands with her grandfather at the cenotaph to watch the Remembrance Day parade and learns about the Morewood memorial and the significance of November 11th. Goddard noted that her book was written to commemorate the 2021 centennial of the cenotaph and that a portion of the money from sales of the book is given towards the upkeep of the memorial.

Ainalem Tebeje who also attended in person spoke about her new novel, called The Refugee, that was published in 2022. This sequel to her 2018 novel, My Love Story in Broken English, follows child bride Almaz Tefera, the protagonist in that earlier book, from Ethiopia to Canada where she is a refugee. You can buy a copy of The Refugee at Octopus Books.

One of our new members, Catina Noble, a multi-genre writer, was unable to join us as she is teaching a course Tuesday evenings for the next several weeks. But her book, Finding Evie, which published in 2022 was discussed at the meeting. This work of fiction is based on the lives of children raised in homes where at least one parent has addiction issues and/or narcissistic Personality Disorder. This is Noble’s 10th book. It is available on Amazon or you can get a signed copy by contacting her directly at

Although European editor, Taste and Travel magazine, and author, Susan Hallett could not attend our meeting, copies of her cookbook were on sale. as were some of the other books discussed during the evening. Most of the recipes in her cookbook are for two people. They include items like caviar puffs, rosehip soup, stuffed tulips, Mexican wedding cookies and blueberry mousse. Her book is sold at $15

Past Reports

COVID-19 Chronicles Anthology Wins Awar, Authors evening April 18, 2023, Waubgeshig Rice – Busting Myths About Indigenous Peoples, November 2016 Thomas Virany Tells Tales of His Journalism Career, September 19, 2016 Inside The Olympic Bubble, October 24, 2016 The Middlemore Experience, September 19, 2011 Panel – Learning About the Pros and Cons of Travel Writing, September 18, 2018 Hélène Cayer – Fundraising, September 2015 Alberte Villeneuve Sinclair – A Love of Teaching, 2017 Melba Lent Woeflé Award Presented at Zoom Meeting, April, 2020