The Afternoon Tea

Cynthia Flood, Bill Gaston, Jon McGregor, Zoey Leigh Peterson, Akhil Sharma, Jessica Westhead

The Afternoon Tea

Host: Paul Grant

Event Number: 92
Tickets: $38.00

(Doors open at 3:00 pm)

The Afternoon Tea

Cynthia Flood, Bill Gaston, Jon McGregor, Zoey Leigh Peterson, Akhil Sharma, Jessica Westhead

Sunday, October 22
3:30pm - 5:00pm
Performance Works

1218 Cartwright St.

For those who enjoy a little indulgence on the weekend, this is the event for you. Sleep in, go for an autumnal stroll, then make your way down to Granville Island for freshly baked treats and authors galore. It’s an afternoon spilling over with stories in all their glorious forms—short stories, tough stories, stories within stories, gritty mysteries, family chaos and stories rich in language play and grand in scope. It might be brisk outside, but inside the tea will be hot, the Devonshire cream decadent and the stories scintillating!

Vegetarian options available but we are unfortunately unable to accommodate all dietary restrictions.

Sponsored by the Faris family in memory of Yulanda Faris.

We regret that Mary Gaitskill is no longer appearing in this event.

We are pleased to announce that Zoey Leigh Peterson is now appearing in this event.

Sold Out

Event Participants:

Cynthia Flood

British Columbia

Cynthia Flood’s last book, Red Girl Rat Boy, was shortlisted for the BC Book Prizes’ fiction award and long-listed for the Frank O’Connor International Short Story award. Her work has appeared in many Canadian magazines, both print and online, and has been included six times in Best Canadian Stories. Her new collection of short fiction, What Can You Do (Biblioasis), showcases many pairs of characters struggling to reshape their connection.

Bill Gaston

British Columbia

Bill Gaston worked his fair share of struggling-writer jobs as a logger, salmon fishing guide, group home worker and as a hockey player in the south of France. Now he is an established novelist, playwright and short story writer. For a time he was the editor of Canada’s oldest literary journal, The Fiddlehead, and he currently teaches at the University of Victoria. A Mariner’s Guide to Self Sabotage is ten cautionary tales about characters on the path to self-destruction.

Jon McGregor

United Kingdom

Jon McGregor wrote his first novel, If Nobody Speaks of Remarkable Things, while living on a narrowboat. The book was so well received that he was chosen as the youngest contender and only debut novelist on the 2003 Man-Booker Prize longlist. His work is often described as experimental as he takes on different forms and styles. He is Professor of Creative Writing at the University of Nottingham, where he edits The Letters Page, a literary journal in letters. He is the author of four novels and a story collection and his newest work, Reservoir 13 tells the stories of the many lives affected by one family’s loss.


Zoey Leigh Peterson

United States

Zoey Leigh Peterson was born in England, grew up in the United States, and has spent most of her adult life in Canada. Her fiction has appeared in The Walrus, EVENT, Grain, PRISM international and has been anthologized in The Journey Prize Stories and Best Canadian Stories. She is the recipient of the Far Horizons Award for Short Fiction (The Malahat Review) and the Peter Hinchcliffe Fiction Award (The New Quarterly). Her debut novel, Next Year, For Sure, was longlisted for 2017 Scotiabank Giller Prize.

Akhil Sharma

United States

Akhil Sharma’s fiction has been described as “a glowing work of art” by The Wall Street Journal. He was born in New Delhi and moved to New Jersey when he was eight. His cultural background, upbringing and the challenges he faced come through in his work. His last book, Family Life, was a semi-autobiographical, award-winning work that was on The New York Times Best Book of the Year list. Sharma teaches creative writing at Rutgers University–Newark. His new short story collection, A Life of Adventure and Delight, follows Indian characters at home and abroad and explores the unpredictable nature of the heart.

Jessica Westhead


Jessica Westhead is a Toronto writer and editor who the CBC named one of the “10 Canadian women Writers You Need to Read Now.” Her fiction has been shortlisted for the CBC Literary Awards and selected for a Journey Prize anthology. She helped create YOSS (Year of the Short Story) which aims to bring short fiction to a wider audience. Her stories have appeared in major literary magazines including Hazlitt, Geist, Indiana Review and The New Quarterly. Her new short story collection, Things Not to Do, features characters who lack power and want to change that—but usually don’t succeed.