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THE COOKED AND EATEN - P.O. Box 352, Peterborough ON K9J 6Z3


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About Cooked & Eaten
Series Schedule
Authors Who Have Appeared
Peterborough Writing and Resources
Links for Writers

The Cooked and Eaten is a reading series based in Peterborough, Ontario that promotes new and adventurous authors to an engaged and informal audience.

We present writers of fiction and poetry as well as acoustic musicians, lecturers, performance artists, and other aficionados of the written word.

The events tend to be friendly, lively with writers and audience exchanging comments as the evening progresses.

If you would like to read at the series, click here. For information about our history and how we work, please browse on or contact us for details.

For news about calls and upcoming events click here. An Introduction to the Cooked & Eaten


The Cooked and Eaten is an organization based in Peterborough, Ontario which motivates the creators of fiction, poetry, theatre, performance and lecture by promoting new and adventurous authors to an engaged and informal audience.

Founded by Esther Vincent in 2000 the series has involved 95 events that included over 300 readings in 20 different venues. Over 150 unique readers have read in 13 languages and have represented eight publishers, dozens of small and self-publishers and an expanding community of audience members, mailing list fans and Cooked and Eaten On Air radio listeners.

The series was started after an event held by the local chapter of the Playwrights Guild of Canada revealed a desire on the part of regional writers to find a way to reliably exchange their work with each other and to expose their work to public attention and criticism.

The Cooked and Eaten was created as a means to fill that need. It was originally hoped there would be enough interest to host a few events over the course of a year. The readings were to be informal, friendly and to encourage audience feedback. Writers were drawn only from Peterborough and the Kawarthas and included a range of professional and developing writers from teenagers to Trent professors, young urban writers, lecturers and cultural critics. Writers were encouraged to read new work and a strict time limit of 20 minutes per reading was imposed to keep the evenings moving along.

After that first year, writers and audience alike demanded that the series continue.

Since then the series has grown to include writers from all over Ontario, Quebec and the rest of Canada while continuing to support local writers and the regional writing community. The regular series runs from September to June and presents anywhere from 6 to 10 events with four writers at each event. The series has also hosted many special events over the years. These special events are opportunities for the Cooked and Eaten to work in conjunction with other organizations, promoters and businesses to expand the audience and scope of the series.

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Mandate and Objectives:

The goal of the Cooked and Eaten is to encourage and promote new work by regional writers and to create an atmosphere of exchange between those writers and the wider provincial and national writing communities by hosting a series of events which present a range of writing from first drafts to excerpts of published book length works and from novice writers to award winning authors.

The format of the regular series is simple: For each event we present four authors who are given twenty minutes to read. We welcome writers of fiction, non-fiction and poetry as well as lecturers, lyricists, translators, performance artists, and occasionally acoustic musicians.

Anyone who works with the written or spoken word fits into the realm of the Cooked and Eaten.

Each person is encouraged to fill the time in any way - props, music and gimmicks of all kinds are welcome. Creativity is a plus, as long as the presentation or reading is focused on the use of the word - to relate a story, to make an argument, to evoke an image.

As well as the regular series the Cooked and Eaten also presents special events in which the organization collaborates with other local organizations and businesses to present writers in new venues and new contexts.

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Mission Statement:

The Cooked and Eaten encourages and promotes new work by regional writers and creates an atmosphere of exchange between those writers and the wider provincial and national writing communities by hosting a series of events which present a range of writing from first drafts to excerpts of published book length works and from novice writers to award winning authors including fiction, non-fiction, lecture and performance.

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The Cooked and Eaten presents six to ten regular series events usually on the first Monday of every month from September to June. We also partner with other local businesses and organizations to present one to five special events. In the 2007-08 season there will be seven regular series events at Cervantes Restaurant.

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Special Events:

Special events for the 2007-08 season include:

The Dog Days of Summer Open Mic. with hot dogs on the patio at the Pig’s Ear Tavern.

The Cutting Board Reads opening gala in September presenting work from each of the members of the board of directors.

Also in September ArtsWeek Peterborough sponsors The 20 Minute Word Project. “The Iron Chef of Writing.” This is an evening of competitive fun in which authors are given 20 minutes to write a composition using a sentence submitted by the audience.

April of 2008 will see a two day event in celebration of International Poetry Month. This festival will present our feature poet in residence, bill bissett. Other poets will join us to present readings and public workshops. This season’s event will also include the 12 Hour Poetry of Everyday Life Marathon in which poets from all over Canada and abroad read aloud in public places for a few minutes each continuously from 8 am to 8pm.

In April we'll be collaborating again with the Certificate Program in Creative Writing through the Continuing Education department of Trent University by presenting an evening of the best of student’s and professors work to celebrate the completion of their year.

Also local writing groups QWERTY and littlefishcart press will be featured in events featuring their writers.

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Board and Volunteers:

In 2005 a volunteer board of directors (The Cutting Board) was formed to help expand the scope and quality of the organization and to support the operation of the ongoing series. This board assists by ensuring we have listings and reviews in the media, by recording and photographing events for archival purposes. The board also co-ordinates and operates the Cooked and Eaten on Air radio show on Trent Radio which broadcasts live recordings of events and live on air chat about other local happenings of interest to writers including interviews with local and visiting authors, theatre artists, presenters and other fans of the word.

Beyond the active board , The Cooked and Eaten engages many other volunteers who help with the organization and promotion of events, in particular in the planning and co-ordination of special events initiated by the volunteers themselves.

If you would like to be a volunteer, please contact us. We are currently looking for people to help with the radio show, recording and editing interviews for broadcast.

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Community Support:

In the beginning, the Cooked and Eaten was sponsored by Marginal Distribution, a downtown Peterborough book distribution business, and the Peterborough Arts Umbrella. Since then the list of sponsors has grown to include several local businesses and organizations. The venues we use are primarily donated. This season, these venues include: Cervantes Restaurant, Traill College, and Saint Veronus Cafe. In past seasons this has included many of Peterborough's fine local restaurants. We also conduct a radio program on Trent Radio. We have an ongoing exchanage between the Cooked and Eaten and the Certificate Program in Creative Writing through the Continuing Education department at Trent University. Our events are also added to the e-mail newsletters of the Peterborough Arts Umbrella and Peterborough New Dance.

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Community Benefits:

The Cooked and Eaten enriches the literary community of Peterborough by encouraging new work and giving writers a venue in which to exchange that work with their peers. The series also provides an opportunity for those writers to exchange work with writers on a provincial and national level. The growing audience of the Cooked and Eaten has come to expect regular events in which they can enjoy the work of regional and national authors in a comfortable atmosphere where they are able to speak directly with authors about the craft of writing and publishing.

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Purpose of Fundraising:

To expand the organization's ability to promote and serve writers in the Peterborough area through the ongoing presentation of events which include readings, talks, book launches, presentations and special events geared toward the written and spoken word. To find support through granting, sponsorship and partnerships in the community and to increase visibility and identify and reach new audience members.

Specifically, this year (2007-08), monies raised will primarily support broadening the scope of the series with more special events and public workshops. Of course, we are always looking for funds to increase writer’s fees, writer’s travel fees and marketing. A portion of funds will be directed toward administrative costs, but these are kept to a minimum, with most of the administrative tasks being done by volunteers.

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Writer's Fees:

Writers are paid a minimum honorarium of $40. This amount has increased and decreased based on support from outside organizations.

Beginning in 2003 The Canada Council provided funding for the Cooked and Eaten through the League of Canadian Poets, The Writers' Union of Canada and through The Playwrights Guild of Canada. This money was directed to paying scale fees and travel expenses for visiting writers. It is the goal of the Cooked and Eaten to generate enough income, through funding and admission income to provide all writers both visiting and local with acceptable fees.

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The Cooked and Eaten uses many means to reach audiences in Peterborough. Listings in three local papers, postering, flyers and the 250 person e-mail list comprise the bulk of ongoing activities. As well the series is promoted on the Cooked and Eaten On Air radio show.

In 2007-08 it is the goal of the Cooked and Eaten to create eye catching posters, flyers and handbills. If the budget allows, we are also considering creating merchandise such as t-shirts, bookmarks, bags or pens.

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Cooked and Eaten is sponsored by, supported by, or otherwise helped along by (with many thanks):
Canada Council for the Arts
Canadian Union of Public Employees
Cervantes Restarurant - 211 Hunter Street West
City of Peterborough
The Gordon Best Theatre
League of Canadian Poets
The Ontario Arts Council
Peterborough Arts Umbrella
Public Energy
Playwrights Guild of Canada
The T.E.W. Nind Endowment Fund
Titles Bookstore
Writers' Union of Canada

Past Sponsors have inlcuded:
Bierkart Studios
Cinema 379


The Cooked & Eaten
PO Box 352
Peterborough ON K9J 6Z3


This page last updated Sept 10, 2006
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