22. Writers on Truth and Curiosity
A Mood Series Event
A Mood Series Event
Personal storytelling and real-life truths require a particular kind of vulnerability, a willingness to bear all. But is the choise that writers make about how they share their stories a truth-telling of its own? In this Mood Series event, three nonfiction writers whose latest works experiment with form and style discuss new ways to explore important ideas and unpack big truths. From graphic nonfiction to poetic essays, and everything in between, Meichi Ng (Barely Functional Adult), Bahar Orang (Where Things Touch), and Jonny Sun (Goodbye, Again) share the questions and decisions that shaped three complex and unique nonfiction titles.
This session is sponsored by HarperCollins Canada.
In these 70-minute conversations, belonging, hope, grief, love, isolation, magic, transformation, and fear, readers will hear from authors who have published or written work in unprecedented conditions. Moderators will discuss these moods and themes with authors, unpacking each mood and its connection to their lives and their work.
Each mood event will be followed by a discussion in our festival lounge – providing attendees with the opportunity to respond to the facilitated conversation.
Events scheduled for May 1-15 are available via an all-access festival pass. The festival pass costs $39 and gives you access to a virtual festival platform, which includes an auditorium hosting forty virtual events, an exhibit hall with a live chat feature for communicating with vendors, and a lounge for engaging in discussions before and after events with other festival-goers.
Passholders will have be able to compete in the space for incredible prizes and will have access to the platform and all of the recorded festival events, as well as bonus content, until May 30, 2021.
Bahar Orang is a writer and physician-in-training living in Toronto. Where Things Touch is her first book.
Jonny Sun is the bestselling author and illustrator of everyone’s a aliebn when ur a aliebn too and the illustrator of Gmorning, Gnight! by Lin-Manuel Miranda. He was a writer for the Emmy-nominated sixth season of the Netflix Original Series BoJack Horseman. His work has appeared in The New Yorker and McSweeney’s. Time magazine named him one of the 25 Most Influential People on the Internet, and his TED Talk on loneliness that has been viewed online more than 3.5 million times. As a doctoral candidate at MIT and a creative researcher at the Harvard metaLAB, he studies virtual place and online community. He received his master’s degree in architecture from Yale and his bachelor’s degree in engineering from the University of Toronto. His latest book is Goodbye, Again, which publishes on March 23.
Meichi Ng is the creator of Barely Functional Adult, a webcomic series she started back in 2015. She recently published her first book, Barely Functional Adult: It’ll All Make Sense Eventually, where she shares a never-before-seen collection of illustrated short stories about exes, murder, friendship, therapy, anxiety, identity, heartbreak, being a Hufflepuff, freaking out about things, calming down momentarily, melodrama, wrinkles, pettiness, and other wonderful delights.
The FOLD is a remarkable and wonderful event for authors and attendees alike. What an amazing community, dedicated to the vital need for inclusive stories and the critical role they play in building a better world.
Field Guide to the North American Teenager is my first novel and FOLD was my first Canadian literary festival. While American and Canadian culture overlap quite a bit, especially when it comes to bookshelves, Canadian literature is unique and I was very heartened by to be embraced by that community I consider home despite residing in the US. It was a homecoming I didn’t know I needed!
The Festival of Literary Diversity was an absolute joy–the organizers thought of *everything* and by anticipating authors’ needs, they freed us to focus on connecting with the audience and each other. There was no pretension, no posturing–just very genuine conversations with invested writers and engaged readers.
I have been to a lot of writers festivals and the FOLD is definitely near the top of the list of those I want to be invited back to.
Being part of such a clearly diverse, inclusive and mutually respectful group was thrilling and inspiring: a glimpse of a better world.
Wherever I go in Canada and find another writer of colour, we eventually end up gushing about how great the FOLD is, how by normalizing diversity it liberates us to talk to audiences about craft. It’s hard to imagine the literary landscape returning to a prehistoric pre-FOLD era.
FOLD is a festival experience unlike any other I’ve had. The FOLD team strive to create a space that’s welcoming and engaging, while allowing for curiosity, ingenuity and the fostering of real community – and they succeed, every year.
The FOLD is one of the most important literary events on this continent. By focusing on diverse voices and giving authors space to share their stories and speak their truths, it is revolutionizing the writing and storytelling realm as we know it.
Being part of the FOLD community has provided me with a strong sense of belonging. Sharing diverse stories and listening to different voices that broaden my understanding of the world has impacted me as a person and motivated me as a writer.