Mayor's Arts Award for Literary Arts

Profile image of Joanne Arnott and Wil to Write (Wil George)

2017 recipients

Joanne Arnott


Joanne Arnott is a Métis/mixed-blood writer and arts activist, originally from Manitoba, at home on the West Coast. Her first book, Wiles of Girlhood, won the Gerald Lampert Award (LCP 1992). She published eight further books, including Halfling spring (Kegedonce 2014), A Night for the Lady (Ronsdale 2013), Mother Time (Ronsdale 2007), and (as editor) Salish Seas: an anthology of text + image (AWCWC 2011).

Her essays and poetry appear in over 25 anthologies and a similar number of journals. She has been called to judge poetry and nonfiction on behalf of BC Book Prizes, the Governor General’s Awards, and others. A frequent performer, Arnott was a founding member of the Aboriginal Writers Collective West Coast, a past volunteer with The Writers Union of Canada (National Council) and The Writers’ Trust of Canada (Author’s Committee). A grand multipara, mentor, editor, and blogger, Arnott is currently Poetry Editor for EVENT Magazine.

Wil to Write (Wil George)

Emerging artist

Wil to Write (Wil George) is a Coast Salish poet from the Tsleil-Waututh Nation. Wil to Write’s work is published in various literary magazines and literary journals, including Ricepaper magazine and Salish Seas Anthology published by Aboriginal Writers Collective West Coast. His poetry book, Survival In Its Many Shapes, was published by UNIT-PITT Projects. Wil to Write's poetry focuses on water bodies (inlets, rivers, oceans, etc.) and the land (mountains, forests, shorelines, etc.). He also uses Wolf and Raven from traditional Salish stories in contemporary settings, and to address contemporary issues.

Past recipients

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