Youth with a love of writing will have an opportunity to be mentored by a local author and artist.

Writing on Fire’s ARTJAM! mentoring weekend will be held May 5-7 at the Thinkers Lodge in Pugwash. It’s open for youth aged 12 to 18. Sheree Fitch and Louise Cloutier will work to create sparks for writing to art, and art to writing.

The event, titled Celebrate Your Stories, will begin at 5:30 p.m. May 5 and end after lunch two days later. A Literary Café will be held Saturday evening, featuring readings by students, and local and professional adult writers.

Fitch is an award-winning novelist, playwright, poet, essayist and storyteller who lives in River John. Her books have been in publication for 30 years, and she has a new book coming out in June, followed by the opening of her children’s bookstore – Mabel Murple’s Book Shoppe and Dreamery – on July 3. Fitch has co-edited an anthology of poetry for children by Atlantic Canadian poets called Whispers of Mermaids & Wonderful Things.

Cloutier is an art teacher with art classes, workshops, and art socials at a unique venue in Pugwash known as Art Quarters. She has received the Prime Minister’s Award for Teaching Excellence and a provincial Bringing Arts to Life Teaching Excellence Award.

Along with teaching art at Pugwash District High School for 25 years, Cloutier served on the board of directors for Visual Arts Nova Scotia, and participated in the Professional Artists in the Schools program.

Those attending the retreat will have accommodations and meals covered by Writing on Fire. Students will always be supervised where they’ll have a chance for mentoring, writing, art, and the outdoors.

Applications are available at schools and libraries, and the deadline for submission is April 13. Limited space available.

For more information, email

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Raissa Tetanish
Raissa Tetanish is the editor of the Tatamagouche Light. She has more than 12 years experience as a reporter, with a background in both photography and photojournalism. She can be reached at 902-305-6177, or