Massing to amass mentorship during writer and residence stint

Playwright aficionado Conni Massing began her writer in residency this week at the Strathcona County Library. Lindsay Morey/News Staff All the world’s a stage for Conni Massing, including Strathcona County Library.

The award-winning playwright and screenwriter settled into her new digs this week ahead of her stint as writer in residence with the local library until the end of April.

“I want to be accessible and available to the people in Strathcona County and I’m looking forward to meeting people and hearing their stories,” Massing told The News on Tuesday.

Massing has dabbled in almost every genre of writing; scriptwriting for theatre, film, and TV, short fiction for magazine, and creative comic memoir (Roadtripping: On the Move with the Buffalo Gals).

“I think I bring a fairly diverse skill set and set of experiences to the job,” she said. “I don’t think you’ll ever have someone in the position who does absolutely everything but I really do feel most writing shares the values of language and narrative and I think I can address that in any material that comes through the door.” Strathcona County Library’s writer in residence Conni Massing will be offering writing workshops and one-on-one mentorship until the end of April. Lindsay Morey/News Staff Stage credits include Matara, The Invention of Romance , Oh! Christmas Tree , Gravel Run, Sky Geezers and The Myth of Summer, and her stage adaptations of W.O. Mitchell’s Jake and the Kid , and Bruce Allen Powe’s The Aberhart Summer . She’s also worked on the small screen as a story editor or writer for such TV productions as North of 60 , The Adventures of Shirley Holmes , Mentors , The Beat , Family Restaurant and Taking it Off .

“There are so many ways to tell a story and I enjoy the challenges of working out the rules or the best possible creative values in each of those genres,” she noted. Edmonton-based writer Conni Massing will hold office hours for drop-ins on Wednesdays from noon to 8 p.m. and Thursdays from 10 a.m.-2 p.m., or you can make an appointment by emailing [email protected] or calling 780-410-6569. Lindsay Morey/News Staff This isn’t the first time Massing has hunkered down as a writer-in-residence, as she was previously placed with the Edmonton Public Library in 2009, however, she’s more accustomed to working with theatre groups such as Edmonton’s Theatre Network, Playwrights Workshop Montreal, and the National Theatre School of Canada. She’s also provided mentorship to the next generation of theatre greats as a contract instructor with the University of Alberta and Red Deer College.

Back with awards and recognition by the Alberta Media Production Industries Association, the Academy of Cinema and Television, the Betty Mitchell Awards, and the Elizabeth Sterling Haynes Awards, she hopes to offer what she has learned to local writers and playwrights in Strathcona County over the next few months.

“Back when I was the writer in residence in Edmonton, part of the great fun about it was that people of many different ages and backgrounds […]

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