Archive for the ‘events’ Category

Spring Book Hatching 2008

May 24, 2008

This is an event I’m participating in June 14. It was lots of fun last year. If anyone out there is in the Vancouver area that day, come on down and say hello.

Picture 40

Here’s a link to the CWILL (Children’s Writers and Illustrators) blog, which has more info: Spring Book Hatching 2008 Press Release « The CWILL BC blog


December 4, 2007

The theme of today’s post is “home.” That is where everyone sane stayed during the cold and snow this past Sunday. I, on the otherhand, was outside at the free (and freezing!) Avril Lavigne concert:

Avril concert

Over three hours in the bone-chilling cold (about 2 1/2 hours of waiting and 1 hour of concert), but my daughter and niece say it was worth it. I have to agree that Avril put on a good show, but by then I was too cold to fully appreciate it. It was a great setting, though (note the tall, snow-covered fir trees beyond the stage), but my body extremities still haven’t recovered! (The weather here is now back to its usual milder December rain.)

Also, I can report that George, the kitten we were looking after, has indeed found a home, where he is apparently already much loved (Curious, his sister, is staying with us). Here he is exploring his posh new digs:

George_new home

24 days until Christmas!

December 1, 2007

Just a quick post to let people know I’ll be joining authors Ellen Schwartz, Diane Haynes and Linda deMeulmeester Saturday, December 8, 1-3 pm at the Metrotown Chapters store in Burnaby to sign books, give out treats (courtesy of Chapters) and host a table of activities for kids. (The photo shows us with our newest books, but we actually have 23 between us!)

Burnaby group

Celebrating Canadian books for kids

November 23, 2007

my costumeI feel like I’ve just walked a few miles in Emily Carr’s shoes (or at least in the uncomfortable, stiff leather button-up shoes of someone from the 19th c.), and now I need to put my feet up. I did a talk about my Emily Carr books for two grade three classes at York House School this morning and dressed in 19th century costume (the shoes were the only thing I wore on the bus and Skytrain — the rest I changed into at the school).

Like most Canadian authors of books for children, I’m reading, writing and promoting Canadian kids’ books all year, but this week is special. November 17-24 is Canadian Children’s Book Week. When I was growing up there were only a few books for kids written in Canada (my favourites were the Emily of New Moon series by Lucy Maud Montgomery and Secret in the Stlalakum Wild by Christie Harris). Now, there is no shortage of wonderful books to choose from — with stories that take place in every part of the country, as well as in other countries and imaginary lands. I just finished reading (and thoroughly enjoying!), Search of the Moon King’s Daughter by Linda Holeman, which is set in England in the 1830s and is about a girl who travels to London to search for her little brother who has been sold into work as a chimney sweep, a dirty and dangerous job.

Next post: Has George found a new home?

Sharing the journey from story idea to finished book

October 22, 2007

Manga Touch was successfully “launched” Saturday at Nikkei Heritage Centre in Burnaby. I read from the book and gave a Power Point presentation about how I came to write it: from my first introduction to Japanese manga and Speed Raceranime (the 1970s TV series, Speed Racer, which my brother and I used to run home to watch after school) to some of the things I experienced on my research holiday in Japan (from historic sites and ancient traditions still practiced to modern bullet trains, Tokyo fashion and manga shops).

manga exhibit

Here I am in the shojo manga exhibit (my launch was planned to coincide with the exhibit at Nikkei Centre’s museum), standing next to artwork by Osamu Tezuka, a great pioneer of Japanese manga and animation.


Here I am showing the final image in my Power Point talk, a manga portrait of me by Vancouver artist Nina Matsumoto. Click here for background info on “Manga Me.” 

For more photos of my talk, you can click over to my guest post at Orca Publishers’ blog. You can also check out some stories that I touched on in my launch talk in the following posts about my trip to Japan:

Three-legged crow post

Quest for the Lucky cat post

And if you were one of those kids who used to run home after school to watch Speed Racer, here’s some Speed Racer trivia for you: The series, called Mach Go Go Go in Japan (playing on the Japanese word for “five” and the English word for “go” — as in “go Speed, go!”), started as a manga book series in the 1960s. Speed’s look was inspired by Elvis Presley’s race car-driving style in the movie, Viva las Vegas. Speed’s car, the Mach Five, owe’s a debt to James Bond’s gadget filled Austen Martin in the movie, Goldfinger. A live action Speed Racer movie is due out in 2008!

Another bit of trivia: I called the main character in my novel, Dana, after Dana Sterling, the spunky female Veritech Hover Tank pilot in the 1980s anime series, Robotech (Masters Dana from Robotechsaga). I did this as sort of a joke going back to my university days when I was part of a group of students hired to research children’s cartoons, toys and their influence on children’s play. Robotech (which was created out of three Japanese anime series) was our favourite cartoon (we watched more of this one than was necessary for the research), and at least one of the guys in our group had a crush on Dana.

Counting down the days to my book launch…

October 16, 2007

This week I’m guest blogger at my publisher’s site. Check out my first post here.

Manga what?

October 4, 2007

Manga Touch booksIt’s here! My new novel, Manga Touch, just arrived, fresh off the press. With the big launch only two weeks away, I was beginning to get concerned. Now, I just have to get everything else ready for the event. . . 

To answer the question “manga what?”, the story is about a North American teenager who loves Japanese manga (comic books or graphic novels) and is a bit of an outsider. When she goes on an exchange trip to Japan, things do not turn out the way she expected. The launch is being held at Nikkei Place, a Japanese-Canadian cultural centre, at the same time as an exhibit of Shojo (girls’) manga visiting from Japan.

It was a dark and stormy day…

October 1, 2007

I spent yesterday (Sunday) in the rain at Vancouver’s Word on the Street festival, ducking under tents to hear authors read and to warm up next to those portable out-door heaters. I wasn’t sure if there would be anyone left by 3:30 when I read from The Truth About Rats (and Dogs), but the tent ended up filling up, and it was great to meet some readers who’ve been enjoying my books. I didn’t have any live rats with me this time — just a puppet (much to the relief of the older lady who said she forced herself to come and hear about rats in the hope that it would help her hate them less).

One of the highlights of the day for me was hearing former actress Meg Tilly read from her new YA novel, Porcupine, taking on the voice of the main character as she read. It was also enjoyable meeting up with other children’s book authors and friends. Below are some photos I took at the event and posted on the BC Children’s Writers and Illustrators (BC CWILL) blog. It includes CWILL authors Heather Kellerhals-Stewart and Norma Charles at the CWILL table (top left), Deborah Hodge (reading from her new picture book at middle left), Meg Tilly (lower right), Tiffany Stone, Kari-Lynn Winters and fellow Tickle Trunk Player Lori Sherritt (bottom left) and me (middle bottom).

Word on the Street