Saturday, September 29, 2007
Wednesday, September 19, 2007
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.
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 http://www.siwc.ca/
And now -- at a minute to midnight -- adieu.
Friday, September 14, 2007
...by 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: http://www.nakedauthors.com/
Wednesday, September 12, 2007
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.
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.
Sunday, September 09, 2007
Friday, September 07, 2007
The lovely and talented Bernice Lever comes to the conference as both a presenter and a judge of our SiWC poetry competition. Bernice has been a poet and author for most of her life, and in between raising her family she's also been an editor and a teacher. She has read and performed her poetry on five continents, but these days spends her time on Bowen Island, teaching, editing and continuing to write. I've known Bernice since right around the time she planted herself on Bowen, and she is, without a doubt, the most wonderful mentor for writers of anyone I know. She's been a member of the Canadian Authors Association for 30 years and is currently their grievence chair. Bernice will also be doing Blue Pencil at the conference, and this is one lady who gives some seriously good advice, so my suggestion is regardless of genre, line up quick for an appointment. Her expertise is priceless.
Bernice has just launched a new book of poetry 'NEVER A STRAIGHT LINE' with Black Moss Press. Her website is http://www.colourofwords.com/
Thursday, September 06, 2007
Wednesday, September 05, 2007
A huge supporter of the writing-for-kids community in Vancouver is embarking on a new venture. Dr. Christianne Hayward, who has worked for Vancouver Kidsbooks for years, has also headed their Book Club programs since way back in 1996. She has a dream coming true these days in the form of her new Lyceum of Literature and Art -- a new site for Book Clubs and more literary events than you can shake a stick at. She's having an open house tomorrow at the new location: 3696 West 8th Ave., Vancouver.
I'll be there.
Monday, September 03, 2007
Sunday, September 02, 2007
The last whole bottle of beer I drank was in Amsterdam at the Heinken factory at 9 am, sometime in July of 1983. Not much of a beer drinker, I'm afraid -- but what the heck -- this is my ninety-ninth post, so let's raise a bottle to celebrate this particular blogging habit I've picked up.
Diana Gabaldon is the New York Times Best Selling author of both the Outlander and the Lord John series. There are some fabulous pictures of Diana on her website at http://www.its.caltech.edu/~gatti/gabaldon/gabaldon.html but I like this one that I took of her at the conference a couple of years ago, with another writer of great renown, Pamela Patchet. Pam has won many prizes for her writing over the years, and is a multiple-awardee in the Bulwer-Lytton fiction competition, (details of which can be found here: http://www.bulwer-lytton.com/). This particular shot of Diana and Pamela was taken very late one Saturday night, after a day of much hard work and revelry. This year, Diana will be participating in panels on the subject of genre-bending and the use of history in fiction as a reflection of present-day issues. In addition, she's sharing a workshop with the effervescent (and deadly) Michael Slade on the subject of plotting stories against the turbulent events of history. Diana will also give the closing keynote speech this year -- an event not to be missed. When she is not traipsing around the globe promoting her books, or being hauled off to shine at SiWC and other conferences, Diana can be found at home in Arizona, writing her astounding and vivid stories. (I am currently in the middle of the final story in her latest Lord John collection right now -- LORD JOHN AND THE HAND OF DEVILS. The book will be available in stores this fall, and I can tell you it's a great read.)