Monday, April 30, 2012

Hello Saltspring!

I'm looking forward to meeting the students and staff at two Saltspring Island schools this week. Hello to Fulford Elementary and Salt Spring Elementary! (It's interesting that the island's name can be spelled as either a compound word or as two words. Apparently, both are correct.)

See you soon!

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Toronto Trip

I'm just back from a trip to Toronto where I was visiting my publishers. There are many changes going on in the publishing world right now and it seemed like a good time to catch up and chat with people face-to-face.

A few highlights, in a nutshell:

- Spring has arrived in Toronto. It was great to sit outside and eat lunch under a bright, yellow sun.
- My publishers are so smart! They were very hospitable and gave me lots to think about.
- Toronto is a vibrant, multicultural city. It was fun to see areas, such as Rosedale and the fashion district, that I had not visited before.
- I enjoyed strolling through the historic St. Lawrence Market.
- I had a chance to meet my web designer and most recent editor, who were both lovely people.

My conclusions? I need to go back soon. Lots is happening in that great city!

I hope spring sunshine has arrived where you are, too.


Sunday, April 15, 2012

Weekend Reading

On this 100th Titanic anniversary weekend, I am thinking a lot about the ship that went down and the lives that were lost. I can't imagine what it would be like to be on the anniversary cruise that is marking the event by going to the location of the sinking, let alone trying to ponder the enormous and terrible circumstances of the actual event that took place in 1912.

To learn more, I just finished reading And the Band Played On by Christopher Ward — a moving account of the musicians who played as the ship was sinking. The author is the grandson of one of the musicians, a young violinist. It is an astonishing story and well worth reading. If you are interested, you can find out more about the book here.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Progress Report

This week I have been writing the cover copy for a book I have been working on for the past two years and it is a great feeling to be so close to the end of the process. It's a history book that required an enormous amount of research, and a book where I was responsible for both text and visuals. No small task! I have loved working on it, but it is thrilling that my work is almost done, and I will be free to think about new projects.

In the meantime, the house directly beside my home office was demolished yesterday. I listened to twelve hours of bulldozer sounds and crashing noises. I have to admit some trepidation about my ability to come up with new project ideas in the midst of months of construction work. I may have to find temporary office space at a cubicle in my local library. Or take up a new occupation. Wish me luck!


Thursday, April 5, 2012

Thank you, Lord Kelvin Kids!

I had a wonderful day at Lord Kelvin Elementary in New Westminster. It was an amazing school with children from all over the world. Their teachers told me that, collectively, the students speak more than 40 different languages. I wish I had been there for their multicultural celebrations held the week before Spring Break. Next year!

Thank you to the students and staff (especially Marie Stevens who invited me) for the warm reception and lovely welcome to your school!

See you again soon, I hope.


Monday, April 2, 2012

Hello Lord Kelvin!

Spring is school visit time!

I'm looking forward to meeting the students at Lord Kelvin Elementary this week. It will be great to speak to the Grade 1 and 2 classes about Canadian wild animals — always a popular topic at that age. Along with my wildlife books, I've got lots of amazing animal facts to share and real animal furs to show.

See you soon, Kelvin kids!