Gabby soon to be a paperback!

Gabby will soon be available in paperback!

My story about the little girl who dropped her book and all the letters fell out — and then whatever she spelled with those letters comes to life — is being reprinted as a paperback. It will still feature the gorgeous illustrations by Jan Dolby.

Gabby won the Rainforest of Reading Award (2015) and was an OLA “Best Bet” (2013).

Until now, Gabby has only been available in hardback. The new paperback will be more affordable, and portable. You can take Gabby in the car, to the cottage — anywhere!

The paperback Gabby will be available in Spring 2019.

Don’t forget, there are two other books in the Gabby series that are still available in hardback. Collect ’em all! And, because they’re about putting letters together, spelling and making words, they make a great gift for early readers.

You can get a copy of Gabby: Drama Queen and Gabby: Wonder Girl from your independent bookstore, Chapters/Indigo, an online bookstore or online from Fitzhenry & Whiteside. If it’s not available in your area, contact me and I’ll make sure you get a signed copy.

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Young Authors’ Conference, Sault Ste. Marie 2018

I had a fantastic time in Ontario’s northern cities near Sault Ste. Marie including at the Young Authors’ Conference last week. It was hosted by the Algoma District School Board.

The conference was inspirational and exciting, with hundreds of grade 7 & 8 students attending on behalf of their schools. They will take the information back to their schools to share with the other students there.

I was proud to present the keynote speech, “How to Avoid Fake News” and two journalism workshops. There were additional workshops on technology, music and storytelling–all designed to expand students’ expertise and literacy.

Well organized, enthusiastic students and engaged teachers made for a top-notch conference.

I also visited four schools in the north, including Mountain View–which really did have a spectacular view.

Thank you to the organizers, the school board, the teachers and of course, the wonderful students, who made the conference such a success.

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Telling Tales Literary Festival this Sunday

One of the country’s best book festivals takes place this Sunday in Rockton, Ontario, just outside of Hamilton. The Telling Tales Literary Festival is a celebration of words — written, spoken, sung — and great books.

I’ll be working with budding young journalists to teach some cool interviewing techniques. And we might even have some “special guests” drop by to be interviewed!

See you there

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Coke bottle eerily relevant–again

My son and I went on a baseball trip to middle-of-nowhere West Virginia a couple of weeks ago.

A lovely–but remote–little American town with nothing (much) but a baseball diamond and a general store. I’m sure the residents would argue that there isn’t “nothing” there but I’m also sure they would agree with me that in this context, there is “nothing” there. One of them even jokingly referred to it as “Hicksville.”

Anyway, the mom of a boy on my son’s team said, “Did you notice that your son’s name is on a Coke bottle in the general store?”

Now, my son doesn’t have a common name. In fact, I’ve only heard of a couple of other kids with his name. And yet there, in the middle of a very small town in WV, in a general store, in a back refrigerator, on a Coke bottle … there it was.

Oh, and I gave it to Bennett in the dugout (he was finished playing for that game) and predictably, he drank it and threw away the bottle. Luckily, anticipating this, I had taken a photo of the bottle before giving it to him.

Deja Vu All Over Again
You may recall that I’ve had a similarly eerie Coke bottle experience with my novel, Sliding Home. You can read the whole post here, but essentially, I put a some money in a vending machine on Centre Island (!) and out popped a Diet Coke with my novel’s exact title on it. I didn’t even notice until I was about half-way through drinking it.

So, thanks, Coke, for narrating my life in a really weird way.

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Join me at Yorkdale Indigo, April 29, 1-4

Come and talk to me about The Blues or baseball or Christie Pits or writing or … whatever you want!

I’ll be signing copies of Sliding Home, along with fellow author Nancy Miller, who is debuting her first YA novel Gang Girls.

We’ll be upstairs, near the children’s books.

Hope to see you there!

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