Fairytales and Legends

Moderator: Sirish Rao

Fairytales and Legends

Friday, Oct 23
Live on Zoom

Oral and written traditions have produced some of the world’s best-known and fascinating tales, from Gilgamesh to the Trickster, Beauty and the Beast and mythologies born on the islands of Hawai’i. In an evocative and deeply subversive afternoon of mythic reimaginings and deconstructed narratives, three authors blend genre, moral dilemmas, the supernatural and, of course, happily-ever-afters. Katherine Fawcett’s Swan Suit delivers the contemporary, witty and macabre, while Amanda Leduc’s Disfigured explores disability and difference in fairytales. Kawai Strong Washburn’s Sharks in the Time of Saviors rounds out the conversation with contemporary legends of heritage and survival. Prepare to revisit humanity’s oldest and most beloved story forms—and see them reformed into meaningful messages for our modern world.

Presented in collaboration with Indian Summer Festival.

SIRISH RAO is a writer, producer, cultural curator with deep connections to the international cultural world. He spent a decade as Director of one of India’s most respected publishing houses and has worked in event production in India, the UK and Europe. Rao has authored twenty books, from commentaries on street art to children’s books, to retellings of Greek plays. His books have been translated into seventeen languages and won several international awards.

Event Participants:

Katherine Fawcett

British Columbia

KATHERINE FAWCETT is a short fiction author whose collection, The Little Washer of Sorrows, was shortlisted for the ReLit Short Fiction Award and a Sunburst Award for Excellence in Canadian Literature of the Fantastic. Her writing has also appeared in Event, Geist, FreeFall, Grain, SubTerrain and Other Voices. Originally from Calgary, AB, she now lives, writes, works and plays in Squamish as a musician, a teacher, a dedicated yogi and outdoor enthusiast.

Amanda Leduc


AMANDA LEDUC‘s essays and stories have appeared in publications across Canada, the US, and the UK. She is the author of the novels  The Miracles of Ordinary Men  and the forthcoming  The Centaur’s Wife. Disfigured: On Fairy Tales, Disability, and Making Space is her latest work. She has cerebral palsy and lives in Hamilton, ON, where she works as the Communications Coordinator for the Festival of Literary Diversity (FOLD).

Kawai Strong Washburn

United States

KAWAI STRONG WASHBURN was born and raised on the Hamakua coast of the Big Island of Hawai’i. His work has appeared in The Best American Nonrequired Reading, McSweeney’s, and Electric Literature’s “Recommended Reading,” among other outlets. He was a 2015 Tin House Summer Scholar and a 2015 Bread Loaf work-study scholar. Today, he lives with his wife and daughters in Minneapolis. Sharks in the Time of Saviors is his first novel.