Sunday, September 20, 2015


The Book Bash festival is an annual celebration of Guelph books. It’s a relaxed afternoon of music and prizes and fun that features recently published books by more than twenty local authors and also music by Ian Reid. The Bookshelf will be on hand to sell local books, and there will also be tables by Guelph micro-publishers.

The 2015 edition of Book Bash is being held from 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM at the Red Papaya (55 Wyndham Street North) on Sunday, September 27th as part of Culture Days.

There is no cost for the event, but donations will be accepted for Action Read, a charity that provides literacy programs in the community.

The host of this year's Book Bash is Valerie Senyk, a Guelph-based performance artist, actress, visual artist and poet. She presented her debut book of poetry at last year's Book Bash event, and she agreed to answer some questions about her experience.

- Jeremy Luke Hill

What were your impressions of Book Bash last year?

Book Bash was a remarkable celebration of Guelph area authors in particular, and books and writing in general. It made me feel that Guelph is indeed a very literate city. 

Why should people bother coming to Book Bash? What makes this festival unique?
People should come to see what was brought out in publishing this past year, to see the diversity of talent in and around Guelph, to get to know their local authors... and to talk books.

What would you like to see Book Bash become? 

I'd like to see it encourage what I once witnessed in St. Petersburg, Russia... I was there as a visitor in 1990. I was in the core city area, and I saw a long line-up of people on the street – the longest I'd seen so far. I tried to find someone in the line who could speak English, and when I did I asked him what they were lining up for. He told me that one of their writers had just published a new book, and they wanted a copy. When I expressed my astonishment, he told me: "Writers are the soul of our country!"

Why is book culture important to a community? What role does it play? 

Book culture is important to any community. It's from books we learn about life, about what it means to be a human being.

The Book Bash festival is presented by Friends of Vocamus Press, a non-profit community organization that supports book culture in the Guelph area. For more information about the festival please email or phone 226-500-7301.

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