Fernwood author set to shine at Victoria Festival of Authors

Victoria Festival of authors will bring together 21 authors

Many of Kevin A. Couture’s most recent short stories may highlight themes of being lost, but the Fernwood author is anything but lost.

For the past decade, Couture has been on a clear, steady path of writing short stories with the goal of creating characters and plots that transport readers away from the world they currently live.

“I just love a good story — to be transported and taken away. When I’m writing that’s what I try and do, is try to give a 15 or 20-minute vacation for people. Something that’s interesting to read and takes you away,” said the 45-year-old author.

But Couture hasn’t always been serious about writing fiction for others to enjoy. His writing journey began 10 years ago, while he was a single dad and at home with his children. He wanted to challenge himself and see if he could write an interesting story with a bit of humour.

His first short story was about a boy named Riley and his older brother Terrace, growing up in a household with an abusive mother. The 12-page pieces revolves around the boys wanting to help their neighbour clear out his recently deceased wife’s belongings, but their mother not wanting them to go. It quickly evolves into a story about brothers protecting each other and how one brother “absorbs” the problems of his parent’s relationship.

Since then, Couture has written anywhere from 30 to 40 short stories, many of which have been published in journals. For Couture, an interesting story is not just about the plot, but the development of characters as well.

“I think an interesting character is an everyday person who gets saddled with something that’s out of their element, something that is difficult,” he said. “Everyday characters or everyday people are extraordinarily interesting. The way that you find out how interesting they are is when there’s adversity or there’s something that’s challenging them. Then those interesting traits come out.”

Now, Couture’s first story, along with 11 others with the common theme of lost or being lost, mixed with humorous parts, have been released as part of his first collection of short stories titled Lost Animal Club. He will also be speaking on a humour panel as part of the Victoria Festival of Authors beginning Sept. 21.

The inaugural event brings together 21 authors (11 of whom are from the region) for four days of discussions, readings, book signings, workshops and festivities in downtown Victoria.

Laura Trunkey, artistic associate with the festival, said there have been some literature festivals in the past, but they hope to turn the festival of authors into an annual event.

Authors include Carmen Aguirre, Brian Brett, Yasuko Thanh, Betsy Warland and Jan Zwicky.

The Victoria Festival of Authors runs until Sept. 25. For a full schedule of events visit victoriafestivalofauthors.ca.

 

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A female prisoner sent Langford police officers a thank-you card after she spent days in their custody. (Twitter/West Shore RCMP)
Woman gives Victoria-area jail 4.5-star review in handwritten card to police after arrest

‘We don’t often get thank you cards from people who stay with us, but this was sure nice to see’: RCMP

Staff and volunteers at the Shaw Centre for the Salish Sea were disappointed by the theft of an educational porpoise skull likely taken on Jan. 8. (Courtesy of Tina Kelly)
Well-loved porpoise skull stolen from Sidney aquarium

Skull had been used for youth and visitor education and outreach for years

The Starbucks in Langford’s Westshore Town Centre is one of almost 300 storefronts that the U.S. coffee giant will be shutting across Canada by the end of March. (Google Maps)
Langford’s Westshore Town Centre Starbucks to close permanently

Popular coffee chain to close 300 storefronts across Canada by end of March

An Oak Bay Police officer handed out five tickets for “fail to obey stop sign” and two tickets for using a cell phone while driving, all within two hours at King George Terrace on Jan. 11. (Oak Bay Police Twitter)
Man confronts unmasked group at Oak Bay Marina

Oak Bay police issue plenty of tickets in short King George Terrace visit

A 45-metre tall call tower is proposed for Westhills Stadium. (Black Press Media file photo)
New cell tower proposed for Westhills Stadium in Langford

Tower will increase capacity in congested network: staff report

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry prepares a daily update on the coronavirus pandemic, April 21, 2020. (B.C. Government)
B.C. adjusts COVID-19 vaccine rollout for delivery slowdown

Daily cases decline over weekend, 31 more deaths

An elk got his antlers caught up in a zip line in Youbou over the weekend. (Conservation Officer Service Photo)
Elk rescued from zip line in Youbou on Vancouver Island

Officials urge people to manage items on their property that can hurt animals

A Trail man has a lucky tin for a keepsake after it saved him from a stabbing last week. File photo
Small tin in Kootenay man’s jacket pocket saved him from stabbing: RCMP

The man was uninjured thanks to a tin in his jacket

Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation Chantel Moore, 26, was fatally shot by a police officer during a wellness check in the early morning of June 4, 2020, in Edmundston, N.B. (Facebook)
Frustrated family denied access to B.C. Indigenous woman’s police shooting report

Independent investigation into B.C. woman’s fatal shooting in New Brunswick filed to Crown

Delta Police Constable Jason Martens and Dezi, a nine-year-old German Shepherd that recently retired after 10 years with Delta Police. (Photo submitted)
Dezi, a Delta police dog, retires on a high note after decade of service

Nine-year-old German Shepherd now fights over toys instead of chasing down bad guys

Nurses collect samples from a patient in a COVID suspect room in the COVID-19 intensive care unit at St. Paul’s hospital in downtown Vancouver, Tuesday, April 21, 2020. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward)
5 British Columbians under 20 years old battled COVID-19 in ICU in recent weeks

Overall hospitalizations have fallen but young people battling the virus in hospital has increased

Canada released proposed regulations Jan. 2 for the fisheries minister to maintain Canada’s major fish stocks at sustainable levels and recover those at risk. (File photo)
New laws would cement DFO accountability to depleted fish stocks

Three B.C. salmon stocks first in line for priority attention under proposed regulations

Trees destroyed a Shoreacres home during a wind storm Jan. 13, 2021. Photo: Submitted
Kootenay woman flees just before tree crushes house

Pamala DeRosa is thankful to be alive

Gin, one of the Kantymirs’ two sheep. (Martha Wickett-Salmon Arm Observer)
Sheep start up ATV, sit in cars and go for walks in Salmon Arm

Until they bought two sheep, Ken and Karleen Kantymir didin’t realize just how social the animals are

Most Read