The Totally Unknown Writers Festival 2009
Guy Allen addresses the audience.
The audience.
Marie Hoy reads "A Taste of Banana"
Fuad Ahmed reads "Melissa"
Robert Prices introduces Sabeen Abbas
Sabeen Abbas reads "The Art of Concentration"
Nadeem Basaria introduces Marianne Kalich
Marianne Kalich reads "Pet Cemetery"
Laurie Kallis introduces Laurel Eden Waterman
Laurel Eden Waterman reads "Fire"
Virginia Ashberrys calls on the Radio Programmers to take a bow
Victoria Martinez reads "Tony"
Salma Tarikh leaves the stage.
Michal Majernik introdues Rahul Sethi
Rahul Sethi closes the show with "Door"

The Sixteenth Annual Totally Unknown Writers Festival was held
on Wednesday, November 18, 2009 at The Rivoli in Toronto.

This year’s readers ranged in age from their 20s to their 50s. Their families come from The Philippines, India, Pakistan, Hong Kong, Scotland, and, of course, Canada. Their stories tell of tensions between lovers, between families, between cultures, between nations. Their stories are included in the Totally Unknown Writers Festival 2009: Stories collection.


A Taste of Banana

Maria Hoy writes about her father’s first taste of banana as a young man growing up in Scotland during the Second World War.


Pet Cemetery

Marianne Kalich writes about two delightful neighbourhood girls, whose crayon drawings are inexplicably connected to the death of family pets.



Fuad Ahmed writes about an academically gifted student’s first hand experience of abortion.



Rahul Sethi writes about his enterprising Mother’s installation of a cereal, garbage bag and grocery box collage that replaces the blown down entry door to their basement apartment on a blustery winter day.



Victoria Martinez writes about a young law student’s balancing act as she is tempted by the riches offered by older men.


The Art of Concentration

Sabeen Abbas writes about a Japanese chef’s passion for creating jewel-like platters of sushi.



Laurel Eden writes about smoking burgers, blaring fire alarms and all else that rises when a mother prepares dinner for a family of four young children before heading out for an evening.


Are You Still Conflicted

Salma Tarikh writes about a young woman coming to terms with the sting of another frayed relationship, and the difficulties of writing.