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Design Book





Tuesday, March 21st
7 pm

Phil Gurski
Shaken and Stirred:
Writing about National Security

What is it like to spend three decades in a job where you cannot say anything to anyone, then try to write a book about it?


Ottawa native Phil Gurski, author of seven books on national security, will discuss the challenges of writing about what you can and cannot say without ending up in jail!

Mr. Gurski’s presentation will be of interest to everyone, especially anyone interested in the timely topics of national security and terrorism, and how to write about issues touching sensitive governmental information.

Phil Gurski is the President and CEO of Borealis Threat and Risk Consulting Ltd. and Distinguished Fellow in National Security at the University of Ottawa’s Professional Development Institute (PDI). Spanning a career of over 30 years at CSIS and the Communications Security Establishment (CSE), he specialized in violent Islamist-inspired homegrown terrorism and radicalization and served as a multilingual analyst on the Middle East. His experience also includes working as a senior special advisor at the National Security Directorate of Public Safety Canada, as a consultant for the OPP’s Ani-Terrorism Section, and as Director of the National Security Program at the University of Ottawa’s PDI.

Phil is the author of seven books to date on subjects such as Al-Qaeda-inspired radicalization and terrorism in the west, extremist violence justified by faith, and a history of terrorism in Canada.

He is a regular commentator on national security, terrorism, and radicalization for a wide variety of Canadian and international media.

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Submissions open for 2023!

Deadline is

March 31st, 2023

OIW 2023 Anthology season now open!

This year, the theme will be Connections. 

Our lives are built on connections: with family, friends, colleagues, pets.

Connections to the earth, connections to our past; connections to homes and homelands, ideas, philosophies, groups... connections to past lives or spirits, even to alien beings!

We have lost connections (like through COVID), found connections... we all need to be connected to something or someone for our sanity and survival.

The deadline for submissions is March 31, 2023.

You must be a full-time or senior member of OIW with a valid annual membership in order to submit. 

Please review all Submission Guidelines on the website before submitting your stories and poems. We look forward to our members’ innovative, thoughtful and memorable entries. 

Happy writing!

Painting: Human Connections I, Lena Bera-Pancini

OIW currently meets on Zoom.

A link is sent out to registered members before the meeting.

We have a few in-person events as well to encourage members to meet, network, and share writing, and publishing experiences. Our Events page has all the details!

Interested in joining? Visit our Membership page to learn more. 

Sunset Reading



OIW holds nine monthly program meetings from September to June each year on a wide variety of writing related topics, normally with a speaker and plenty of opportunity for questions.


OIW gathers every third Tuesday of the month with presentations starting at 7 pm, lasting until 9 pm. The meetings currently take place on the Zoom virtual platform.
Visit our membership page to sign-up now!

Ottawa Rising
OIW's 2022 anthology

A few copies are still available. $10 each. Click to order.

Shipping is additional. When you order please mention if you are able to pick up your copies or you want them delivered. We will quote you a shipping price based on Canada Post rates. 

A few copies are still available. $10 each. Click to order.

Meet a few of our writers


Mike Young

Kirk's Landing

Mike was born and raised in Kirkland Lake, a small northern mining town with a nearby First Nations reserve. He grew up with a love of the north, even in the midst of winter, exploring the surrounding woods with his friends, and his grandfather. Kirk's Landing, a crime novel, was his first book. In 2016, he published a sequel, Return to Kirk's Landing. (1).jpg

Patricia McCarthy

The Crimson Man

Author of the wildly imaginative Crimson vampire series, currently consisting of (6) novels: The Crimson Man, The Crimson Boy, The Crimson Woman, The Crimson Time, The Crimson Crimes, and her latest in the series The Crimson Dream. The Crimson vampire series takes place in Ottawa, Canada. (2).jpg

Craig Munro
Bones of the Past

Craig has spent his life traveling and moving from one field of work to another. A voracious fan of Sci-Fi and Fantasy, it was only a matter of time before he turned his mind to creating a world of his own. The Bones of the Past is the first installment in the epic fantasy series - The Books of Dust and Bone. (3).jpg

Melissa Yuan-Innes
Human Remains

Melissa Yuan-Innes (Melissa Yi) is an emergency room physician. Her newest Hope Sze crime novel is HUMAN REMAINS. THE STOCKHOLM SYNDROME, a previous Hope Sze novel, was selected by CBC Radio as a best crime novel of the season.

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