Sunday, December 30, 2007



No writing to speak of -- taking a little break for a few days. But tonight I watched a lovely little movie called "Once". I tried to post the cover picture here, but alas...

Will have to embed the link to the official site, instead:

The movie stars Glen Hansard, a member of the band The Frames and late of The Commitments -- another amazing music flick from Dublin. Also newcomer Marketa Irglova -- and the two stars, being both musicians in real life, combined to write most of the songs they perform.

This movie was made on a dime and could maybe have used a little bit of a tighter edit -- but eminently watchable. Loved it, in fact.

Just remembered tomorrow is New Year's Eve... more then, I think.


Thursday, December 27, 2007

Wishing you a moment of peace... this busy and stressful season.

We had a white Christmas and today I took my Very Happy Dog for a walk in the snowy woods. The real world with all its anxiety and joy will return soon enough, but for me, the sound of an eagle's chuckle through the trees made everything stop this afternoon.


Monday, December 17, 2007

Checking in...

James McCann and I had a couple of GREAT signing events over the weekend -- a busy time and lots of fun.

But right now I have my head bent low over a manuscript that I want to have polished by Wednesday night. I'll post an event update with pictures and description as soon as I get this baby to bed.

Am also answering only emergency emails at the moment -- will resume radio contact later in the week.

Happy last week of school before Winter Break!


Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Christmas Cool...

Okay, here it comes. No matter how much I try to hold it back -- fingernails rending and tearing to keep those calendar pages in place -- today marks two weeks to Christmas day.

My shopping is not done. My tree is not even bought, let alone decorated. Cards unwritten, and of course -- unsent. And worse, I received my sister's Christmas parcel today. (I'm pathetically grateful not to be celebrating Hanukkah, since it started so much earlier this year...).

When I picked up my mail today, along with the parcel came the first holiday cards. As my children built a gingerbread house (even THEY are more organized than I...) I sat down to open the cards with the guilt of things undone weighing heavily in my heart.

But the very first card I opened brought the cool right back into my Christmas. In an effort not to infringe on the artist's copyright, I am only printing a small segment of the card cover here...

How cool is that? The first card, from my talented friend Lee Edward Fodi, self-illustrated. It almost made me forget that as a male, he has totally put me to shame by getting his card to me first. (I still haven't even looked up his address, for goodness sake.)

I love that Lee designs his own cards. I love that he sent one to me. I feel very privileged to hang out in a circle that includes such amazingly talented individuals. Also upping the cool ante at the card-opening moment was my new Colin James & his Little Big Band Holiday CD playing at the time... another friend whom I watch proudly as he makes his way as a success in the arts in this community and beyond. (I'm pretty sure he had a gig with the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra last night...)

How lucky are we to be doing what we love for a living. Makes a person feel like celebrating, somehow. If only there was a chance to do that anytime soon...


Sunday, December 09, 2007

Exit Music

Finished Ian Rankin's latest this weekend, in which DI Rebus faces the spectre of retirement from the force. I can't quite make myself believe he's really going, but --

the final nothing less than perfectly fitting.

A great read.


Saturday, December 08, 2007

Holiday Gift Ideas

This idea is courtesy of MotherReader (, and a great one it is...

Looking for a great holiday gift idea? Give a copy of MS. ZEPHYR'S NOTEBOOK with a ticket to your nearest planetarium (or the Vancouver Space Centre!), so that your young reader can learn more about the world of telescopes and astrolabes and Carl Sagan.
Or how about a complete set of the Eagle Glen trilogy (SEEDS OF TIME, SECRET OF LIGHT & SHADES OF RED) along with a bag of peppermints -- sure to settle the time-travellers tummy!
Looking for more great ideas to make book-giving fun? Check out CWILL's blog this week. The link is just over there -- to the side of this posting, and when you hie yourself over there, you'll find a lot more ideas for BC book giving, courtesy of Adrienne Mason. (Thanks, Adrienne!)
If you'd like to get yourself a signed copy of any of my books, I'll be at the Park Royal Indigo store this Friday afternoon (December 14th) from 2:30 to 5 pm and at the Surrey Strawberry Hill Chapters store Sunday, December 16th, starting at 1:00 pm. As a special bonus, James McCann will be signing his books PYRE and RANCOUR right beside me. A great way to cross off a number of those difficult-to-buy-for teens on your list!

Thursday, December 06, 2007

My office...

My office is a lovely room.


Just last year the very incredible talents of one Peter V. Smith were put to work, creating the masterpiece within which I sit every day.

Problem was -- I had a very busy year...
Let's just say I have a lot of empathy for the disgraced coroner from Ontario -- or for his filing skills, anyway.

Well, I'm home now, and am trying to turn my attention to all the stuff that has fallen -- abandoned and in ruins -- around me while I have been running around promoting Ms. Zephyr, dealing with SiWC issues and writing DEADLINE in between.

I do have a few more events between now and the end of the year, (more in the next post on that) but in between -- it's time to open my mail. (2.5 ' stack under arrow...)
I spent most of the day cleaning out my office, organizing, re-shelving and so on. And no, this is not the 'before' picture.
So let's just get this straight. Coroners are supposed to have tidy offices. But writers...?
PS -- Watch this space for upcoming signing events before Christmas...

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

The Calm after...

Storm watch seems to have settled down a bit here, thankfully. The folks in Strachan Point are back in their homes after a helicopter survey of the creek above them proved things to be less dangerous than first thought.

This is an aerial shot of the debris torrent dam above my own little village. We have two creeks -- Harvey & Alberta -- in the village proper (and another -- Magnesia Creek -- in the Brunswick Beach section of the village).

For those who asked -- a brief word or two on the nature of a debris torrent. The combination of development, poor logging practices and severe weather (in Howe Sound we had 100 mm of snow followed by 150 mm of rain on two consecutive days this week) means that debris in the form of logs, mud, snow and branches can build up high in the creeks on the mountainsides where the water flows most swiftly. If the pressure builds up sufficiently, this material can rocket down the side of the mountain like a combination tidal wave and avalanche, wiping out whatever is in its path.

In 1983, after a debris torrent tore down the creek bed, destroying five houses and and killing two boys, dams like the one pictured here were built above the village on the mountainside to prevent this from happening again. Charles Creek, above Strachan Point, has one of these too, but a debris torrent in 2006 left the emergency authorities just a little nervous about the potential for disaster this time. Thankfully, all appears to be well for the moment.

Just as happily, the fundraising event for Rockridge School at 32 Books last night seemed a big success, judging from the number of bodies crammed into the bookstore. Congratulations to Deb McVittie and her staff for putting on a great event. Special props to the student volunteers who worked so hard to make sure everything went smoothly.


Monday, December 03, 2007

24 hours on Deck...

A view from my window...yesterday morning, just before dawn.

Approximately 12 hours later... last night.

And this morning, just after sunrise...

Same section of deck rail, roughly. (In the second shot, you can see the lump made by the snow-covered brick...) Massive, heavy snowfall -- roads impassible, highway blocked. Then ....WHAM.

Pineapple Express.

It hit last night sometime after midnight. By noon today, all the snow was gone, trees bending sideways, and flooding, flooding everywhere. The tiny community of Strachan Point, just down the road, evacuated due to debris torrent hazard. We mountain dwellers fear debris torrents -- they've taken many lives over the years.

Only lost power once today -- not bad!

Life on the coast is never dull...

In other news, be sure to drop by 32 Books in North Vancouver tomorrow night. Deb McVittie and her gang are putting on a special Rockridge Secondary School fundraiser:

Celebrate the Book: A fundraiser for Rockridge secondary school library featuring authors kc dyer, John Vaillant, Mary Novik and entertainment provided by the Rockridge student combos, Tuesday, Dec. 4, 6:30-9 p.m. at 32 Books, 3185 Edgemont Blvd., North Vancouver.

Hope to see you there!


Sunday, December 02, 2007

The Power Flickers... I'd best be quick. We've lost power three times today -- heavy snow on the wires, I think. At least a foot of snow has fallen during the daylight hours today -- with much resultant happiness ensuing from the local denizens.

Time then, for just a few visual memories of book tours past.

This shot is of the moon shining down on the beautiful main street of Lindsay, Ontario, after the first snowfall of the year.

A very pretty town, as was Omemee -- just down the road a few clicks. Full of most excellent kids with GREAT questions who made me feel right at home.

This shot is of old Montreal, through the window of a creperie, where a brief (but rollicking) lunch was consumed with great gusto. It was Grey Cup Sunday and the streets were fairly empty, and strangely enough it was darned tough to find a place to eat. But we managed it, and were very happy with the results.

And this is the real reason, of course, that I hied myself to Montreal for lunch and a tour of the old city in the first place...

Now just look at that face and tell me ANYONE who would pass up a chance to spend time with this woman? You'd have to be crazy...

Thanks for a great day, Pamela!


Saturday, December 01, 2007


...not Michael Moore, though I do want to see his latest. No -- it's me this time, courtesy of (I am convinced) the generous fellow who sat in the row behind me on the plane from Toronto and coughed and sneezed into the air the entire trip.
I am hoarse, crabby and am cultivating a bit of a Darth Vadar vocal vibe.
But it is snowing, my children are cosy and warm and my dog wants to go for a romp, so I guess things could be worse. I think I'll still lobby for surgical masks on airplanes, though!

Wednesday, November 28, 2007


The sound of home after too long away.

My arrival was a little less foggy and a little more snowy than this picture would indicate, but I haven't got a better shot for now. (Once when a tiny sow-whet owl crash landed on my deck, it was into the tree on the left that he flew as soon as he had recovered...)

I have had an incredible year. And this particular season has amounted to the busiest fall I have ever lived through.

But now I am home, and ready to catch up on the mountain of things that have waited, un-done, for my return.

The only really lousy thing that's happened this year has been my computer service. After going through crash after crash of email and various other systems, the time has come to make the big change. I'm putting the PC out to pasture and going Mac, baby.

The pasture's not _that_ far away, over on the next desk, actually, since the offspring still require ready access to all their old files etc., but the main machine will be a Mac, at last.

In the meantime, if you've sent me an email to which I haven't replied ... send again, just in case. I'm only a hundred or so behind, which compared with the thousands I was chasing at the height of SiWC madness feels like easy sailing.

Thanks again to all the amazing teachers and librarians and to the hundreds of terrific teens I met on this book tour. You all made me feel so welcome -- I had a marvellous time. For those who have ordered books -- they are on the way. (I mailed a bunch yesterday, and got a note today that some had been received already. Go Canada Post!)

Also came home to the very exciting news that Ms Zephyr has been nominated for a Cybils Award. More on that soon...

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Startling New Talent...

Okay...I can only note the link here, but check out this amazing new YouTube video, (a PSA against littering) filmed and directed by the most talented crew I know...

(As soon as I have an actual copy of the video, I'll upload it here -- with permission of the auteur, of course.)


Montreal and Back Again...

I am back in Toronto in my terribly posh hotel, drinking hot chocolate and contemplating a speedy but lovely day in Montreal with the effervescent, triple-hitting Bulwyr-Lytton (AND record-holding SiWC Silly Writing contest winner) Pamela Patchet. Ferried about by her most excellent husband, the fine Dr. Hamilton, I had a chance to have a quick glimpse of the old city, whilst sharing lunch with a dear friend.

It was, in fact, a great deal snowier than this stock publicity shot would imply.

I did manage to take a few more seasonally accurate pictures that I will post on my return.

I glided back into Toronto, courtesy Via Rail, to the sight of a heroically green CN Tower, leading our Engineer to leap onto the crackly pa system (circa 1930, I am sure) to announce Saskatchewan's triumph in the Grey Cup. I walked off my train in Union Station as each and every member of the Grey Cup audience descended into the subway. A sea of people...

Sadly, at this hotel, they close the gym unconscionably early for people still keeping BC hours who have been sitting on a train much of the day and need a workout. Looks like tomorrow morning will have to do.

Instead, I am drinking lovely hot chocolate WITH whipped cream, just to console myself.


Friday, November 23, 2007

Day Seven -- Lindsay at Last

Spent my day in and around the environs of Lindsay, Ontario, having arrived here last night by bus.
I left the big boxes of my books at my new hotel in Toronto to avoid schlepping them all the way up here on the bus, but when I reached the bus station, I realized I had been so efficient with my packing that I didn't have a single copy to read to the group. I dashed off to the World's Biggest Bookstore (only a block away) and bought a copy of Ms. Z so I would have something to read.
Lindsay is now a part of the City of Kawartha Lakes -- a decision six years old and yet still controversial to those who live here. My contact here is Diane Lansdell, Children's librarian at the Lindsay Public Library. A big thank you to her for ensuring I was well fed and carefully delivered to my various destinations.
I was scheduled to do two library events, which turned out to include a number of groups of local kids, and the day was great fun. I spoke to kids from the school in Lindsay, and then a group of 150 or so kids from Scott young Public School in Omemee. (Scott Young was Neil Young's father -- both were from here and Scott was apparently a very respected newspaper journalist.) The kids were very patient as we took pictures and shot video for the local media.
They were a GREAT audience, very engaged in the stories. It looks like at least one of the classes will be using one of my books for a novel study this year.

This is a very cool little town -- I am typing these words on a computer that sits under a map of Lindsay... dated 1875. It looks like a thriving metropolis, even then. I got a picture of the moon rising over snowy downtown Lindsay that I will try to post as soon as I get a chance. Thanks for inviting me!

Much writing and paperwork over the next few days, and after a side trip to Montreal, the wending homewards will commence.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Sprinting Into the Home Stretch -- Day Six

Today was a transportation day. My long-suffering minder Monica was behind the wheel yet again -- once she managed to make it into her car. The doors froze shut after a night of freezing rain, and our adventures today all took place in a winter wonderland as Toronto and environs was hit with the first big storm of the year.
We made our way to Lambton Kingsway Junior Middle School and arrived only a few minutes late due to the dastardly drive. Spoke with two sets of kids from grades 6-8 -- had a great time. Am not exactly clear on what I am saying any more -- but I think coherance prevailed, as the kids asked great questions and a good time was had by all.
Many thanks to parent Julie Dreger for seeing to it that I didn't starve and for helping organize book sales!
Monica took the wheel again to ferry me north to Markham, where I faced my biggest crowd yet at Armadale Public School. We actually arrived early, due entirely to the skills of the driver, and had time for lunch before speaking to seven classes of grade 7 & 8 kids in the school gym.
The Amandale kids did their school proud and as I walked out the door, were scrambling to set up the gym for a science fair at the school tomorrow. Hope it is a great success!
Back down to collect books, drop them at a new hotel and then hop yet another bus -- this one to Lindsay, Ontario. A fond farewell and a big thank you to Minder Monica! Serious snow here in Lindsay, and I am now warmly ensconced in the Manor on Peel B&B -- beautiful old house, circa 1905 and a brilliant internet connection that has allowed me to bring my blog up to date.
Trekking through the snow to local libraries tomorrow -- more soon.

Day Five -- Go Bus Redux

Once again on the Go Bus at the crack of dawn -- this time destination King City via East Gwillimbury. Had a couple of great sessions at King City Secondary under the supervisorial eye of Lou Bruni, Librarian/English Teacher and all-round nice guy.

This logo is the motto of KCSS, and reflects pretty accurately my view of what makes a story great, too -- with a little flexibility in definition, of course.

After my two presentations at the high school, I was escorted across the road to the local library, where I put on a presentation for a group from King City Public School. Great kids -- very engaged in the story and lots of fun to talk with.

Go Bus back to Toronto in freezing rain, and then a quick walk through the city to Marsha Skrypuch's most excellent book launch for her newest novel: Prisoners in the Promised Land: The Ukrainian Internment Diary of Anya Soloniuk.

This is a beautiful book and a long labour of love for Marsha -- congratulations go out to her for this marvellous success!
Back to the hotel, where I connected with Anita Daher again, and we collectively failed to meet up with the other authors (RP McIntyre and Jeff Sinclair) who were crashing at the hotel.

Messing With the Time-Space Continuum -- Tour Day 4


An easy internet connection, at last.

I had to leave the wilds of downtown Toronto and travel to the civilized environs of Lindsay, Ontario to find it, too.

So, in keeping with the title of this post...I am actually writing this on Day 6, (or perhaps it is actually Day 7 -- it's been a long week), but I will hark back to Day 4 to re-coup the highlights.

Day Four began with a trip to the bus station for a jaunt to Aurora. I had a lovely bus driver, terribly erudite, who suggested a number of his favourite books to me as we travelled north and chatted en route. He also very kindly offered to help me with my books as I stepped off the bus, and then dumped every one of them onto the wet curb in the rain. But in the way of these things, of course -- it turned out to be good luck after all, as I sold all my books that day -- not only autographed but speckled with a little fresh Aurora precipitation.

Margaret Fleming, teacher-librarian extraordinare from Devins Drive Public School met me and my dampish books at the bus station -- and we had a marvellous time together. I can't seem to upload a picture, so here is a link to this very cool school:

I did a couple of presentations to the kids of this school -- signed postcards galore and sold afore-mentioned books. Go-Bused back to Toronto and took a walk over to the Distillery district to find incredible chocolatier-- Soma, as recommended by my minder Monica. (Their image is to the left...a store that has to be experienced to be believed.) Clearly walked too far and ate too little chocolate, as I fell asleep before I could blog. Continue to be seriously behind in email due to faulty connections.


Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Day Three -- Third Try....

Alrighty, then.

It appears I have the horrid internet connection problems sorted out.

Back to yesterday...

Early start. My minder/keeper/driver/organizer Monica collected me at 8 am for a trip to Parkdale Collegiate High School. This school is right off of Queen Street West in Toronto – an inner-city school with a wide range of kids from many ethnic backgrounds. Apparently a large part of the student population come from Thailand.

It seems a vivid, multicultural environment in an old neighbourhood of this city. The school itself is the second-oldest in the city, built in 1888. The library I was in, however, was a mere five years old (and apparently cost $1M).

I spoke with three English classes -- a group of grade 9 pre-IB students, a class of grade 12s and then another group of grade 9s.

Here are some of the thoughts of the grade 9s regarding their school:

  • Sasina says her school is friendly.

  • Nilaj thinks it's a cool school.

  • Javeria and Vivian agreed.
Pretty unanimous feedback! Thanks for having me, Parkdale.

At lunch, I walked along Queen Street. This part of it is loaded with Roti shops and other West Indian cuisine. Very cool shops but Queen Street is looking tired and uncared for. Yonge Street is the same -- at least downtown. Near the Eaton Centre used to be a vibrant area -- now it's a street filled with derelict buildings and strip joints. Homeless folks on every corner. It's hard to understand.

In the afternoon, I nipped down to the Market area to visit the gang at Dundurn in their new digs. (Not so new to them, perhaps, but new to me...)

Just time to buy take-out Thai to eat in the car, and then Monica scooted me (in her fabulous, environmentally-conscious Zip Car) up to Brampton for a reading at the library and an interview on Rogers Cable. (You know you've made the big time...) The cameraman was also the interviewer, and once he positioned me, I was not allowed to move, for fear I would slip out of the shot and he wouldn't know. As an inveterate hand-talker, this was no easy task, but I think it turned out all right in the end.

It was great to see Helene and Elizabeth from the forum, who braved the wilds of traffic to come to the reading. The trip to Brampton took two hours, but back to the hotel was just under half an hour -- the beauty of a traffic-free toll highway speeding our trip back.

And another glamorous day of the touring author closes -- have to be up at seven to make the bus to Aurora!


Monday, November 19, 2007

Day Three....argh

Just lost a lovely long post due to a crummy internet connection. It's been a long, busy day -- will re-post the details tomorrow.

~kc, krankily....

Sunday, November 18, 2007

A Day with Anita...Day Two

Met up with my friend, Manitoba writer Anita Daher last night. Anita is the author of a bunch of great books for kids and teens including (most recently) SPIDER'S SONG and TWO FOOT PUNCH. She's touring Ontario during Book Week as well, and today was off to London and environs.

But last night we went for dinner at a Nepalese-Indian restaurant on Yonge Street. GREAT food. It turned out to be the first meal of the day for both of us, so we had quite a feast. I enjoyed a whole selection of vegetarian delicacies on my sampling platter (curried chickpeas, Gobi Aloo), and Anita bravely ate goat for the first time ever.

(This is NOT Anita's goat. She insists hers was much tastier... and I can vouch it had a little less beard and almost entirely no bell.)

Today we got a little lost in downtown Toronto (which, strangely enough, has happened before), finally found bookstores, signed whatever stock we could get our hands on to sign, (Eaton Centre Indigo and the World's Biggest Boookstore now have signed copies, if you are looking for 'em) and bid each other adieu until later in the week.

If you want to get your hands on Anita's fabulous new book TWO FOOT PUNCH, which is the only fiction out there right now on the subject of Parkour (and a fabulous book it is, I might add), my suggestion to you is to order it pdq from your nearest bookstore. While you are at it, you might suggest they bring in a few extra copies -- this book was sold out on Amazon before it even officially launched -- and the bookstore owners will thank you for the sure sales that will result.

Tomorrow brings an early start and four presentations, plus one tv interview. I'll let you know how it goes...


En Route to Toronto...

November 17.

Ten to twelve PST, but already ten to three in Toronto, if I were there yet, which I am not. Instead, I’m sitting in the aisle seat of the second row of the plane. I’m lusting after the bulkhead seat, which is sitting sinfully unoccupied in front of me.

My primary entertainment of the flight thus far has been the tiny lady sitting alone by the window in the coveted row in front of me. I recognize her as being the person who was driven to the gate in a cart and then wheeled down into her seat. Her English isn’t great – her second language, but she knows what’s what. Initially the flight attendant felt compelled to explain several times the need for the seatbelt on take-off. Subsequently, every time the attendant moved away from the front of the plane little front-row lady was out of her seat, stealing drinks from the cart. Mind you, these drinks were from the ‘free cart’, but nonetheless – she knew what she wanted and no seatbelt sign unjustly lit was going to keep her from her goal.

The flight attendant, off hawking the despicable ‘snack-paks’ for sale on the flight, had to dash to the front twice to pry the large water bottle from her hand and return front-row lady to her seat. The second time, front-row lady clutched the cap of the water bottle, refusing to relinquish it until her glass was safely filled.

I am reading THE NAMING OF THE DEAD. Haven’t actually been able to read any Rankin since I last left Edinburgh – some weird kind of homesickness thing. But it’s good to meet up with Rebus again, and I find that I have missed him.


Little front-row lady is now switching freely from the aisle seat to the window -- enjoying the luxury of movement, all the better to scope out the cart. But sadly, the staff are onto her now and everything is in full lock-down.

And finally...

My final view of front-row lady is the sight of her bolting up the gangway into Pearson International, nary a wheel-chair or electric cart in sight.

You've got to admire a woman who knows what she wants.


Friday, November 16, 2007

The Tour -- Day Minus One...

Just as a little amuse-bouche before the tour, I found the following in my Google Alert box yesterday...

Brampton - In celebration of Canadian Children's Book Week, being held across Canada November 17 to 24, Brampton Library is proud to host award-winning Canadian author, kc dyer.
Ms. dyer will entertain and educate when she presents her new book Ms. Zephyr's Notebook. This free presentation focuses on teens and parents and how to cope with eating disorders, Crohn's and kidney disease, issues of self, wellness and health – and more!

When I called the library for clarification, it turns out they did, in fact, believe I was coming to speak on the subject of Wellness in Teens. Putting aside the question of whether the words 'teens' and 'wellness' can be legitimately placed in the same sentence, I hastened to reassure the librarian that I do not pretend to be a Knowledgable Health Educator, but in actuality am a novelist. A writer of fiction. A prevaricator by trade.

(My symbol du jour.....-->)

Just for the record, while Ms. Zephyr's Notebook is the story of three kids who are coping with a whole lot of Not Fun, it's not a disease-of-the-week book. Crohn's disease, eating disorders, kidney disease -- kids all over the world have to cope with these things every day.

When I wrote this book, I was interested to find out what would happen when two strong-willed individuals found themselves in a confined space; one of whom could not eat and the other who would not.

And sure enough -- sparks flew and a story was born. I'm looking forward to talking about it -- and maybe reading a little of it -- in Brampton and elsewhere on this tour. (Many thanks to Jan and Sherri at the Brampton Public library for their clear heads and generosity of spirit!)

That straightened out -- it's time to proceed with this journey.

See you on the road...


Thursday, November 15, 2007

Snow Day in Whistler

Just back from Whistler. I have to say -- deepest sympathies to anyone who has to make that drive with any regularity. It is truly brutal to do the full Sea to Sky Highway. The trip to Lions Bay is fraught with many stops and trecherous sections these days, but the Whistler and Pemberton North gang certainly have the worst of it right now. Let's send all our collective good karma out to Peter Keiwit Sons so they can get the job done expediently and safely.

Whistler Secondary was a blast. They had their first big snow last night, and I brought Seamus along for the ride, so we spent the lunch hour on a quick walk with him alternately frolicking merrily or rolling ecstatically. A born snow dog.

In the school, I worked with the Comparative Civilizations class (grade 11s and 12s), a grade 8 CAPP class, a grade 10 English class and the Creative Writing club after school. Fantastic kids plus great teachers added up to a fun day. Thanks for having me!

Book tour starts Saturday. Received my itinerary today and will be blogging where I can. I think I have thirteen presentations over five days. Will bring my running gear to help keep my brains in my head...


Wednesday, November 14, 2007


A yearly event that allows the members of CWILL BC to showcase new titles to teachers and members of the Vancouver Children's Literary Roundtable...tonight. It's a privilege to be in the company of such a fine group of writers and illustrators. Each author/illustrator was limited to a two-minute discussion of his or her latest work. Dashing Dan Bar-El (whose amazing Alphabetter Book has just been put, via the BC government, into the hands of every child entering kindergarten in the province this year) dressed up as an old Yiddish faerie, to the vast amusement of all present. Ann Walsh came down from the Cariboo with her hat and drum (but without her book). Author Kari Lynn Winters and audacious illustrator Cynthia Nugent both sang their way into our hearts. In all, 30 BC authors and illustrators strutted their stuff, followed by a smashing speech by Nan Gregory on the subject of her varied and unique writing career. Stage-managing the event with great aplomb behind the scenes and in front of the mike was illustrator (and graphic novelist) Kathie Shoemaker.

A good time was had by all.
Tomorrow I am off to Whistler to commune with the denizens of the local high school. Have to miss yoga for this -- so I plan to align my chakras and get me some mountain Zen while I am there.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Past, Present, Future and Not Tense

First of all, as promised -- PORCUPINE, by Meg Tilly. An exquisite read. It felt very much like reading a contemporary WHO HAS SEEN THE WIND. The story of Jack, a 12 year old girl with an old soul. I enjoyed it immensely.

Past Tense -- Writing.Wise event, now over and done with. Most excellent panel, a discussion that could have easily gone on all night and a great crowd. Congratulations to Maryse de la Giroday for a job well done!

Present Tense -- so many things are making me tense at the moment, I can hardly bear to think of them, let alone write them down. Tension is the new zen. Tenz...the acronym.

Future Tense -- most immediately, Hycroft tomorrow night. Then on to the next!

And finally -- let me leave you with this fine example of Seamus in repose -- definitely NOT tense.
(This picture is courtesy of the fact that I could not get Meg's cover pic for Porcupine to post. Will try another day.)

Thursday, November 08, 2007

On the Queen, Water Bodies and Blogging in the Dark...

I am sitting in a small hotel room on the Saanich Penninsula -- near Victoria. Hence the Queen. The true Queen is asleep behind me in her bed, replenishing and readying herself for excellence at a swim meet tomorrow. She is here to swim (and socialize, of course) and I am here to write in my usual, hermit-like fashion.

I am the world's worst swim parent. I emerge from my cocoon only long enough to cheer on my own child and she races the clock, and then it's back to head buried in current wip. No team spirit at all, actually. Horrifying.

I have just been weeping, a little, reading Meg Tilly's blog. I first met Meg in the flesh at Book Expo earlier this year in Toronto, and we run into each other rather more often these days. I am about one chapter away from finishing her latest book, PORCUPINE, which I will review here shortly. But tonight was my first experience with her blogging persona. And I can tell you -- what you see is what you get with this writer. I LOVED reading her blog. Meg is a most interesting person, with a quite remarkable (and somewhat public) history, but what she is best at, hands down -- is writing. The Meg she writes is the Meg she is -- or as close to it as the one I've met, anyway.

All this by way of saying, if you'd like to add a beautiful read to your blog list, google yourself The Official Meg and it will take you to her website. Add her blog to your RSS feed or your Reader or whatever. Really a joy to read.

Oh, and not at all's just that Meg's youngest son is the same age as my daughter, and we are both facing the weird reality of the Impending Launch of of one's offspring into the great unknown of the real world. A truly startling phenomena, in much the way a knife neatly slicing out a piece of one's heart must be. An astonishingly sudden event, considering 18 full years have passed in what feels like a heart beat, or a hair's breadth, or wahtever space of time is faster than an instant. This is, of course, complicated by the standard social nicety one faces encompassing the general unacceptibility of bursting into tears in public places for no apparent reason, particularly in front of said offspring, now fully grown but not beyond the humiliation of parental embarrassment.

Perhaps that is what I will cling to -- she may be all grown up, but no one can embarrass her the way her mother can.

Anyway -- you must read Meg's blog. She clearly rocks not only as a writer but as a parent. And is more eloquant, to boot. (She, for example, would never use the expression -- to boot. I am quite sure of that.)


Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Lots Doin'

Smack in the middle of insanity season -- just bolting from one thing to the next and hoping it all holds together.

McKee was...uh -- well, I really like his book. And it was a good time for me to take the seminar -- just in time to help tie a few things up for the submission draft of DEADLINE. Let's just say old Bob is not recommended for the faint of heart. This week is more re-plotting, twisting and getting ready for the approaching onslaught.
Upcoming Events:

Writing.wise -- looks to be a fantastic evening with an amazing panel discussing all things writing. (Sue Thomas, a new media expert from the UK; Shari Ulrich, singer-songwriter; Mira Sundara Rajan, musician and Canada Chair in Intellectual Property Law at UBC; Ian Verchere, founder of Radical Entertainment, games developer and Whistler ski dude; Kaare Andrews, comic book writer and artist.) November 13, 7 pm Radha Yoga, 728 Main Street in Vancouver. You can register for this event on-line at Check the previous post or email me for details.

Hycroft -- This year's CWILL BC / Vancouver Children's Roundtable Annual Event, filled with all the new and exciting books for kids and teens produced by BC authors and illustrators. November 14, 6:30 pm, Hycroft House on McRae St. in Vancouver (just near 16th and Granville).

Then on Thursday, I'll be heading up to Whistler to hand out at the high school for the day. Can't wait -- Libby McKeever the assistant librarian has all kinds of fun stuff planned.

On Saturday the 17th, I'm off on my CCBC Book Tour of Ontario. My slice of the province will be mostly in and around Toronto -- Brampton, King City and Lindsay are also on the agenda. I'll be doing a number of public library readings and school visits. You can check out the Canadian Children's Book Centre site at for more details.

I'm bringing my trusty laptop, so I will try to keep a bit of a running commentary going.
And to close, in the spirit of Hallowe'en, or perhaps Samhain might be a better reference -- this is my friend Delia, a Cornish Rex by breed, though a trifle (one might venture to say, out of her hearing, of course) demonic by nature. I took this picture a couple of weeks ago when she wasn't really in the mood. At least 19 years old, she's not in the mood for much of anything but sleeping these days. Delia will feature (respectfully fictionalized, of course) in the upcoming Ceilidh stories, the first of which will be set in Edinburgh. I can't wait to get to work on them -- I'm ready for a little magic.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Spending the weekend with McKee...

Robert McKee, screenwriting guru. His seminar is back in Vancouver, and I am going, in spite of the fact that I have a million other things (including the last few words of DEADLINE) screaming for my attention.

This has left me a little crabby, along with the thought of having to sit still for so long -- the seminar lasts from 9:00 am to 8:30 pm three days in a row. This means juggling kids, dog and aforementioned other million items.

I`m hoping you`re worth it, Bob.
Scattered around these words are pictures from the various venues that hosted the `Chocolate & Chat` teacher appreciation events James McCann and I were a part of last month. We covered four municipalities in two days and had an amazing time at each and every stop. A big shout out to the warm welcome we received in the Strawberry Hill (Surrey), Langley and Vancouver (Granville & West Hastings) Chapters stores and the West Vancouver Indigo store. We`ll come back and visit any time -- you guys were fantastic hosts!

Looks like there might be another mini-tour in the works. More when I have further details to share.

*kc (this is NOT a typo --my tilde just died...)

Tuesday, October 30, 2007


Here is the press release for Writing.wise, an event that is coming up November 13th. It sounds like great fun, and I am looking forward to meeting this eclectic group.

The event is being organized by Maryse de la Giroday of FrogHeart Communications. Come out and join us!

Writing.wise—a rip roaring, rip snorting, profane, world shaking, rabble rousing...event for writers in Vancouver is being presented by the Society for Technical Communication Canada West Coast Chapter, Masters of Digital Media at Great Northern Way Campus, Vancouver Comicon, The Shebeen Club, Simon Fraser University Writing & Publishing Program, and FrogHeart Communications.

Meet a diverse panel of writers and engage in a lively discussion about stories and narrative in games, comic books, new media, books (fiction and non fiction), and song.
· Kaare Andrews is a writer and artist who has worked on comic books such as the Incredible Hulk, Ultimate X-Men, Amazing Spider-Man, Gen13 and the Matrix. He won "Outstanding Comic Book Artist" at the Joe Shuster Awards in 2005. And, as a filmmaker, he's directed a number of award-winning short films.
· Mira Sundara Rajan, is a musician, author of "Copyright and Creative Freedom," and the Canada Research Chair in Intellectual Property Law at the University of British Columbia. She has consulted on copyright matters in the United States, United Kingdom, India, European Union, and Russia.
· Sue Thomas, a UK expert in new media, is the author of the book "Hello World travels in virtuality" and others. She is the program leader for the Online MA in Creative Writing and New Media (at De Montfort University). Her students collaborated with Penguin Books on 'A Million Penguins'. She'll explain how that blockbusting experimental wikinovel produced some surprising results.
· Shari Ulrich recently released her latest solo album. A member of the BC Entertainment Hall of Fame, a Juno award winner, and a fixture on the Vancouver music scene, Ulrich has performed with Pied Pumkin, Ulrich Henderson Forbes, and Valdy & the Hometown Band. When she's in town, Ulrich teaches songwriting locally.
· Ian Verchere is known as the developer of over 30 game titles including two million-selling titles for Electronic Arts, SSX Tricky and NBA Street V2. He's also a founder of Radical Entertainment; an author, "V0N 1B0; General Delivery, Whistler, BC; a creative consultant for Roald Dahl's literary estate, and a scriptwriter (with Douglas Coupland) who's sold his work to Disney.
· kc dyer is the author of four contemporary and historical young adult novels which have been published in Canada, the US, the UK, and Thailand. The conference and the writing contest coordinator for the Surrey International Writers' Conference, dyer is a skilled, capable moderator with experience in and opinions on all aspects of the writing scene.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007
Radha Yoga and Eatery (728 Main St., yoga on the edge and above the Brickhouse Bar)…
Door opens at 6:30 pm, and the event starts at 7 pm.
Tickets are $15/$20 and available through


Wednesday, October 24, 2007

A Quick Review...

The notebook show the best and worst of everyone, and make it fascinating reading. What I found really unusual is that the title character (Ms. Zephyr) is not in the story, she is only seen through the eyes of the 3 teens/tweens.

A brief clip from the latest internet-based review of Ms. Z. It can be found in its entirety by clicking:


Reading on the Corner...

This is the press release for a series of gigs, one of which I am hieing over to participate in this afternoon:

The Cornerstone Cafe and the Canadian Authors Association are pleased to present:
Readings on the Corner
Wednesday, Oct. 10, at 2pm.
Bernice Lever, reading from her new book of poetry, Never a Straight Line
Margaret Anne Hume, reading from her recent biography, Just Mary: The Life of Mary Evelyn Grannan

Saturday, Oct. 13, at 3pm
Sandra Harper, reading from her new young adult novel, Breaking Out
Patrick Taylor, reading from his popular novel, An Irish Country Doctor

Wednesday, Oct. 24, at 3:30pm
Lois Peterson, reading from her new novel for young readers, Tansy Here and Now
kc dyer, reading from her new young adult novel, Ms. Zephyr's Notebook

Saturday, Oct. 27, at 3pm
Anthony Dalton, reading from his new adventure book, Alone Against the Arctic
Ben Nuttall-Smith, reading from his memoir, The Chameleon Sings -- Surviving and Healing from Childhood Sexual Abuse

All events will be held at the Cornerstone Cafe, 3003 Burlington Drive, Coquitlam (at the corner of Pinetree & Burlington). Free admission. Information: or 604-806-0471.

See you this afternoon in Coquitlam!


Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Ms. Z Gets Reviewed by Roundtable

Rebecca Wire of Roundtable Reviews has a few words to say about Ms. Zephyr and her notebook here:

And, yes -- you might recognize the posterior on the front page of the SiWC site ( ). The champagne bottle was empty at the time, I assure you, but as a parting gift from Don and Lisa Maass, it had been enjoyed by all.
The blogosphere is abuzz with comments about the conference. Let me know if you see a new one, and I'll post a link to it here.

Monday, October 22, 2007

A Conference to Remember

SiWC 2007 is now history.

An amazing, memorable event, with a roster of stellar presenters and nearly 800 attendees.

This shot shows an apparently delerious conference coordinator with her astounding group of co-chairs: Bonnie D., Tara H. and Carmen M.

It is the volunteers who make this thing happen.

The three ladies pictured make the big decisions.

Ursula M. (treasurer), Carrie H. (bookstore liaison), Sue G. (transportation), Estelle S. (Trade Show), Camille N.(Volunteers), Mary R. (Bookfair and so much more) and Dale McGladdery (of Digital Doodles, Webmaster extraordinaire) all lend an expert hand to make the event a success. And with 60+ volunteers this year, things generally went pretty well.

More than 70 workshops and panels. More than 1000 Blue Pencil and Editor/Agent/Publisher/Producer interviews. Six keynote speeches. Five Master Classes. Four Writing Awards. Three Day Trade Show. Two merit awards -- the SiWC Surrey Board of Trade Award and the Griffin Award. Book Fair/Author Signing. A Silent AND Deadly Auction.

Countless cups of coffee and more than a few martinis swilled.

We'll be putting up some of this year's conference info on the website shortly. It's at , in case you haven't been there before. If you do go -- make sure to add your name to our mailing list.

The next conference is a mere 367 days away.

Surrey International Writers' Conference -- October 24 - 26, 2008.


Thursday, October 04, 2007


That's it.

The travel is all booked -- the scheds are all duled. Many, many little jobs remain (including clearing off some 600 + emails from my poor, over-loaded server), but SiWC 2007 is clearing it's throat, ready to sing.

I'm feeling pretty good. Evilly good, actually.

James McCann and I wrapped up our Chocolate & Chat Travelling Teacher Appreciation Road Show with four bookstore appearances in two days.
Will try to post a few pictures when I get them -- my camera died at the pivotal moment, sadly, and refused to regain consciousness, even with the infusion of new batteries.

It was hectic -- it was crazy. But it was FUN!

You know what I will remember? Not the sales or even the chocolate (since I forgot to eat any of it...) Nope. I will remember the lady of the broken glass.

On Sunday, as we dashed out into the downpour in Surrey to head to the Langley location, I zigged when I should have zagged and I dropped and shattered a glass plate on the road right in front of Chapters. Shards of glass EVERYWHERE. James stood guard, protecting with his life the tires belonging to the miscreants who shook their fists at this interloper (how DARE he stand in the middle of the road?) and tried to drive over him anyway. I ran for a box to collect the glass. As I started to pick it up, a woman ran out from the shelter of the bookstore.

"My parents used to tell me when I was a little girl in India," she said, "that broken glass is good luck." She proceeded to help me pick up the glass, all the while getting soaking wet and risking life and limb in the middle of the road with us. "They said that broken glass meant that the bad thing had already happened, so the rest of the day would be filled with good luck," she said.

Then she took the box of broken glass and put it in the garbage bin for us, while we stared after her, rain dripping down our glasses.

She was right, of course. We had a marvellous day after that.

Two more featured presenters from the conference -- this time the married Speculative Fiction Super-team of Diane Duane and Peter Morwood.

Diane Duane is author of numerous books, both on her own and with her husband as co-author, but she is held in the highest esteem in my family for her Young Wizards series. The combined facts that a new book in the series is due out this fall AND the author is coming to town have my girl in a state of nervous frenzy that somehow still can't manage to render her speechless. We are both looking forward to meeting this remarkable author when she comes to speak at the conference.

Diane Duane will jet from the home she shares in Ireland with her husband, Peter Morwood, who will himself be discussing speculative fiction at the conference. He'll talk about creating realistic heroes and spectacular villains, as well as his take on speculative fiction on the screen and on the page.
You can find out much more by checking out and

Saturday, September 29, 2007


I know a secret.

Getting to crunch time with the Surrey International Writers' Conference, and lately there's not time for much but head down -- push forward. We've been working on the contest lately, and now I've heard back from all the judges and the results are in...

But I'm not telling.

Friday night, October 19th, all will be revealed. Four winners of four categories. $1000 each. At least one honourable mention in each category, $150 each. And everyone gets published in the SiWC 2007 Anthology.

A pretty exciting night, October 19th. Will you be there?

Tomorrow the 'Teacher Appreciation Travelling Road Show' starts up again with our Chocolate & Chat events at Chapters. James McCann and I are going to brave the wilds between Surrey and Langley and visit the Chapters stores there. (Last week when we did a trial run, we got lost for more than an hour -- but less than two -- trying to find the Langley story.) This time we have Google directions AND a map book to help us out. We'd love to see you -- we have chocolate and books to spare, AND Chapters is showing their appreciation of teachers by offering a 20% discount.

A quick look at two more of the amazing line-up of presenters this year. For those for whom non-fiction is their thing, we have a couple of great choices. Conference favourite Elizabeth Lyon is returning this year. In addition to being the author of five great books about writing, Elizabeth has been an independant editor for many years. [And speaking of secrets, as one of the judges for the Non-fiction Writing Contest, she knows a secret or two herself!] This year at the conference, Elizabeth will offer a workshop on the subject of giving your fictional story an Extreme Make-over -- but she's also a great resource for selling a non-fiction manuscript.

Another star on the non-fiction scene is Daniel Wood. One of Canada's best known magazine writers, Daniel has also produced fourteen books over the years. He'll tell you everything you need to know about how to make freelance writing a career -- and he should know, he's done it himself!

If you'd like to learn more about either of these two amazing writer-teachers, check out the conference website at

And you'd better book your spot fast. The conference has sold out for the last two years running.


Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Holy Autumn Leaves, Batman!

Autumn leaves -- me breathless.

This one in particular.

Not the picture -- the season. Between book launches (4 more coming up September 30th and October 1st), Word on the Street, the Surrey International Writers' Conference, a book tour through Ontario, a McKee seminar -- well, let's just say that there is a whole lot to blog about.

Right now I am working with Kathleen at Carlson-Wagonlit to book travel arrangements for the folks coming to SiWC. With more than 60 presenters this year, scheduling the group is quite an interesting challenge!

Letters, schedules and e-tickets are flying through the ether as the last-minute details of the conference take shape.

Jack Whyte has made his selections for his Master Class -- and now he's busy (with Diana Gabaldon) judging entries for the writing contest. His decisions and those of the other judges will become evident on Friday, October 19th, as they are announced on the first evening of the conference.

And speaking of the conference -- for our two featured authors tonight, I've picked The Adventurer and The Showgirl.

The Adventurer is one Anthony Dalton, current president of the Vancouver branch of the Canadian Authors Association and the best man to have behind you in a tiger hunt. (Note: As a vegetarian, I do not regularly hunt tigers, however, since they might consider me a tasty, corn-fed morsel if I was in their neighbourhood, I wouldn't mind having Anthony watching my back...)

I've known Anthony for many years, but only in civilization. Before he settled to his life of bliss in White Rock, he's been around the planet a time or two. Here's just a _smidgen_ of his bio:

A British-born Canadian adventurer and author he is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society and a Fellow of the Explorers Club. His expeditions have taken him across the Sahara many times, through the deserts of the Middle East, into the mountainous terrain of Afghanistan, on dangerous Arctic waters, and canoeing wilderness rivers in northern Canada. He was the organizer and leader of a CBC-TV filming expedition to the Saharan salt mines of Taoudenit in northern Mali, and participated in a television documentary on great Canadian rivers for the Discovery Channel. Magazine assignments have taken him to the Australian Outback, the Falkland Islands, Namibia, Vanuatu, New Zealand, Bahrain, Oman, and Saudi Arabia, among others.

And I didn't even get to the tigers...

You can come and listen to Anthony Dalton tell his stories and talk about writing at SiWC this year.

Anthony might be a great raconteur, but even if you are into the bearded male look, he is no showgirl. You want a showgirl? I've got one for you.

This showgirl comes with brains, beauty and a best seller or two. Vicki Pettersson has had a whirlwind of a year. Her first two novels launched within mere weeks of each other, only to find their way, almost immediately, onto best seller lists across the US and Canada.

Her books THE SCENT OF SHADOWS and THE TASTE OF NIGHT are rockets in the Urban Fantasy genre, and Vicki will be talking about them and the processes that led to this self-described 'ten-year overnight sensation' at the conference this fall.

Less than a month away -- check out more details at

And now -- at a minute to midnight -- adieu.


Friday, September 14, 2007

Things are Changing... the minute, it seems, with regard to the upcoming Surrey conference. I'll be sending out a new email note to the mailing list in the next day or two, detailing all the exciting new developments for the conference. We are anticipating selling out again this year -- if you're still on the fence, better make the leap soon. I'm just saying...

Interested in great crime fiction? Author Patricia Smiley will be one of our guests this year at the conference. The latest book in her Tucker Sinclair series (the third, as a matter of fact) was just released in July. Patty loves a good ride-along with the LAPD -- in fact, she is a special reserve officer with the police force in Los Angeles. That's taking your research seriously!

When Patty is not working on her latest Sinclair novel, you can find her participating in the crime writing blog:

For a crime tale of a different sort, have a peek at local writer Wendy Roberts's mysteries. Wendy is an SiWC poster child, who started attending the conference before she'd published a word. Her second 'Ghost Dusters' novel is due out this year.
When she's not busy writing or blogging, this mother of four specializes in driving her kids around. You can read all about what Wendy is up to these days on her blog at or on her website (with a very cool new trailer for her upcoming book) at
And once again -- I've missed the midnight deadline for my blog. Suddenly it's tomorrow, again. I seem to have this problem a lot lately...

Wednesday, September 12, 2007


...with a massive allergy attack over the past couple of days. It seems to be subsiding now -- but it slowed me down for a couple of days. It's remarkably difficult to think when the interior of one's head dissolves and tries to run out one's nose.

Was interviewed for Co-op Radio (102.7 FM) today by a friendly and fiesty group of seniors for the Senior's 411 Radio Show. We talked about books and about the conference and it was great fun. It will air Thursday at 2 pm, I think.

Okay -- a quick look at a couple more authors coming to Surrey. Two of my favourite Canadian writers for kids are on the agenda, so let's take a closer look...

Eric Walters is one of the most prolific writers of books for kids and teens that I know. He started off as a teacher, began writing books in his spare time, and his career as a writer took off. At last count he'd written 38 books for kids and teens, but there's probably been a couple more out since I last checked. In the interests of full disclosure, I have to add that no -- he did not write Ms. Zephyr's Notebook -- even though his name is on the cover. He did, however, scribble on the cover in a grafitti-style blurb that made me very happy.
Eric has a lot of passions in his life -- literacy for boys, literacy in Africa -- and is a mesmerizing speaker. His books reflect his passions and those of his subjects, from Canadian heroes like Terry Fox and William Stevenson, to historical adventures like The Bully Boys, to contemporary teen angst. An incredible writer, he'll be sharing his insights in his workshops at SiWC, and giving a keynote speech as well. You can read more about his life and work at

Lee Edward Fodi is an illustrator and a writer and a guy who is not afraid to walk around in a wizard's hat. I've worked a lot with Lee in CWILL this year, and taught with him at the CWC summer camp. Lee's Kendra Kandlestar books are beautifully illustrated, wonderful stories, and this past year he collaborated with Victoria Miles to produce 'The Chocolatier's Apprentice', a run-away best-seller to celebrate Purdy's Chocolate 100 year anniversary.
Lee just came back from a stint in Seoul, teaching writing to kids at the Korean version of CWC, and he's got a bunch of other projects on the go. He'll be talking about writing books for kids and using illustrations to inspire your work as a children's writer when he comes to SiWC this fall. You can see some amazing examples of Lee's beautiful work at


Sunday, September 09, 2007

More Ms. Z Reviews

MS. ZEPHYR'S NOTEBOOK has received a couple of very nice reviews lately. The Globe & Mail's book section on the weekend coupled a review of Ms. Z. with VISIONS, Book 2 of Carol Matas' FREAK series. Of Ms. Z., reviewer Wendy Kitts says: "Although the concept of this young adult book is quite ingenious - from its cover design made to look like a notebook to the way the story, like an intravenous drip, is fed to us gradually through snippets of notes - the best part of this story takes place in the present tense."

The full review can be found here:

Carolyn Cooke, reviewing for SURREY NOW, says "Ms. Zephyr's Notebook is a great read -- fast-paced, engrossing with memorable characters struggling with overwhelming issues."
The full review is also online at:

SiWC author profiles up soon -- have to feed the rapacious hordes first...