SylviaTaylor AshokBhargava CandiceJames & HelgaParekh with RhiannonMarshall at GardenPlotReadingSeries on July 27

We are set to have a great afternoon listening to creative nonfiction from Author Sylvia Taylor and some spirit-infused poems from Poet Ashok Bhargava. While Poet/Painter/Singer Candice James may sing a few of her songs, it is hard to predict if Poet/Artist/Performer Helga Parekh will read her poems or if she would present a performance piece, either way, we are in good hands with Poet Rhiannon Marshall as our Host for the afternoon, 2-4 PM. More about the event is at this link:

Sylvia Taylor, Author

Sylvia is an award-winning writer, editor, educator, and communications specialist in Metro Vancouver. She is the author of The Fisher Queen: A Deckhand’s Tales of the BC Coast (Heritage House 2012) and Beckoned by the Sea: Women at Work on the Cascadia Coast to be launched in May 2017. Her prose and poetry have appeared in anthologies and magazines in Canada and the US, and her work was shortlisted for the CBC National Literary Awards. With over 400 articles in print, she has edit-coached more than a 100 book manuscripts. A past director of the Federation of BC Writers for 13 years, Sylvia now serves as a director for the Arts Council of Surrey and Board Advisor for the Royal City Literary Arts Society and ArtsCan. She consults with authors and entrepreneurs, teaches writing & publishing-related skills, and is a conference presenter and contest adjudicator (including for the BC Book Prizes for non-fiction in 2014).

Ashok Bhargava, Poet

Ashok Bhargava has published five books of poetry and he is a contributing writer to numerous anthologies worldwide including Inner Child Publishing U.S.A. and BC weekly newspaper The Link. Ashok is an Axlepin Poet Laureate and has won many awards including Poet Ambassador, Writers Beyond Borders, Kalidasa International and World Poetry Lifetime Achievement. Ashok has facilitated events at Richmond City Hall, Minuro Centre, UNESCO poetry at Moberly Arts & Cultural Centre since 2002. For community & literary activities he has received the UBC Humanitarian Award, Dr. Ambedkar Social Justice Award, Pandora Good Citizen Award and Tapsilog Leadership Award. He finds living between cultures and languages very intriguing and stimulating. He is founder of Writers International Network Canada Society. Its main objective is to discover, nourish, recognize and celebrate writers, poets and artists and to assist them to network with the community at large. He can be reached by email at:

Candice James, Artist/Performer

Candice James served 2 three-year terms as Poet Laureate of New Westminster, and she was appointed Poet Laureate Emerita in 2016. She is author of 14 books of poetry, a visual artist, musician, singer/songwriter, and a workshop facilitator. Awards include: Bernie Legge Artist/Cultural Award; and Pandora’s Collective Citizenship Award.

Helga Parekh, Poet/Performer

Helga Parekh is a writer, artist, sculptor, potter, and a performer. She published a self-made chapbook of her poem ‘Learning from the Timeless Beauty Of a Tulip‘ in 2016. She won first prize from the Arts Council of Surrey for Christmas Card Verse competition in 2018. Her poetry has appeared in various publications including Saving Seeds (New West Writers, 2014), and her poems were the finalists in the Burnaby Writers Society annual writing contest in 2012. She has illustrated a children’s book ‘Ramya’s Stars‘ by Mala Ashok. It was published by Pratham Books, a not-for-profit organization in India, in multiple Indian languages to promote reading among children. It is available in Hindi and English at the Surrey Libraries. In 2017, Helga completed the Southbank Writer’s Course at the SFU Surrey. She was a member of New West Writers, a member and sometimes facilitator of Renaissance Book Writers, and she was the Group Facilitator of Surrey Muse Writers. Helga is a supporting member of Surrey Muse since 2012. At present she enjoys working with clay, and is continuing to write another children’s story.

Rhiannon Marshall, Host

Rhiannon Marshall is a poet and a fourth year student at Kwantlen Polytechnic University (KPU) where she is achieving her Bachelor of Arts degree with a major in Creative Writing and a minor in Counselling. Her poems have been published in many of Cedar Bark Poets’ Zine magazines, and she has co-hosted many of their monthly readings. Rhiannon has also co-chaired an author Q&A event at Kwantlen University. At this time, other than her poetry collection, she is working on a children’s book titled ‘Why Do You Walk Like That?’


We gratefully acknowledge
that we meet on the traditional territories of
the Semiahmoo, Katzie, Kwikwetlem
Kwantlen, Qayqayt and Tsawwassen First Nations.



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