Where the Heck Have I Been?

Bad author (slaps hand)! It’s pretty awful to leave an “official author website” unattended for so long, but the bottom line is this:

Sometimes a person just has to make a choice between keeping  up with self-promotion, online presence and social media, and actually sitting down and writing!

Increasingly these days I’m opting for the writing thing. I was forced to, with deadlines looming for the Eldritch sequels, and (phew!) I handed in #3 this spring. Since I was fully immersed in writing #3, I wasn’t even able to properly promote #2 when it was released last Christmas… (Bad, bad author!)

So here’s a little more about Shadow Wrack, which turned out pretty well, I must say…


After defeating the forces of evil in Eldritch Manor, Willa must rebuild the manor — and her family.

Can Willa rally her supernatural friends to defeat an invasion from beyond?

After battling and defeating the forces of darkness, Willa is looking forward to a little well-earned peace and quiet. Unfortunately, her recent adventures have given birth to new problems, not the least of which is the task of rebuilding Eldritch Manor, a retirement home for supernatural beings, from the ground up. And no one is behaving themselves: Mab’s fairies have declared war on the dwarf construction crew, Willa’s Mom and Belle are feuding, Baz is running amok, Horace is living in the woods, the phoenix squawks all night long, and there’s never a dragon around when you need one. To be perfectly honest, Willa is starting to think the forces of darkness were easier to handle than her family and friends — until those forces start to rise again!

Trouble is definitely brewing, and the source lies very close to home, Who can Willa trust? Who will betray them? Who will open the door for the darkness to enter?

Hmm, intriguing, no?

Stay tuned for the third installment, Darkling Green, which is scheduled to make its glorious appearance in time for Christmas 2016.

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More Eldritch To Come…

So true! (Bill Watterson)

So true! (Bill Watterson)

Okay, I think I can finally make it official… I have signed with Dundurn for two (yes, two!) Eldritch Manor sequels. I am nearly finished writing Book 2, actually sprinting/stumbling to the finish as we speak. Which would be why I’ve been neglecting this blog and not leading a writing club at the library this fall. Must… focus…

(Obviously on the to-do list: come up with a title!)

Thanks to everyone who urged me to write more about Willa and her friends, and thanks of course to Dundurn, for agreeing to more of this creepy foolishness!

Stay tuned for more details about release dates! I’ll pass them along as soon as I know more.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I must get back to work.


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Writing Process Blog Tour: My Fiddly, Neurotic Way of Doing Things

The summer disappears into the sunset and here I am, back with something called a Blog Tour post… it seems to be kind of like a chain letter but without the promise of quick easy cash. Oh well.

Nobody's+DogWhen I attended the Festival of Trees events in London and Toronto in May I met many talented and enthusiastic children’s authors, including Ria Voros, who was nominated for the Silver Birch Fiction Award for Nobody’s Dog. Ria teaches in Nanaimo, BC, and her young adult novel-in-verse The Opposite of Geek came out in 2013. She also co-created Fork and Fiction, a blog about the love of food and books. Visit her at www.riavoros.com or www.forkandfiction.com.


BC beach bums

Recently Ria came with her family for a short visit to my little Salt Springy Island and we sat on a beach and talked of serious, writerly things. (Well, not entirely.) We did chat vaguely about starting some sort of writing support group for curmudgeonly BC writers (or maybe it was just me who was curmudgeonly). Anyhoo, now she has tagged me in this blog tour about Writing Procedure. You can find her post on the topic here.

And now it’s my turn…

Question 1: What are you working on? Continue reading


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Entering Summer Slacker Time!

Oh I wish I was slacking off! I just wanted to let you know that I won’t be posting much in the next while because I’ll be busy teaching my summer camps, and after that I’ve got me some overdue writing to attend to! (An Eldritch Manor sequel is on the top of the pile…)

Have a terrific July everybody!


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Monday Movie Prompt

Let’s get our week started with a little writing fun, shall we?


After the Thin Man (1936), with Myrna Loy and William Powell

First: what are their names? occupations? favourite cocktails?

Next: write some dialogue that matches their expressions perfectly.

Another option: write dialogue that runs counter to their expressions.

And another: what’s the dog thinking?

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Weekly Eldritch: The Trunchbull


the Trunchbull by illustrator Quentin Blake

My weekly pick of something creepy/scary to share with you all… Anyone who has read Roald Dahl’s Matilda will know exactly whom I am speaking about. If you haven’t, Agatha Trunchbull is the headmistress at the school Matilda attends. Continue reading

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Forest of Reading Trip: the final chapter

The day after the Harbourfront hoopla (or was it more of a hootenanny?), I hopped on the GO train to meet more students in Ajax… Another fun day with wonderful authors and fabulous readers.


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Weekly Eldritch: Nosferatu (1922)


It’s time once again for your weekly creepy thing. Now I know all the newfangled moviemaking technology and CGI wizardry can deliver some pretty frightening stuff, but I dearly love the old movies and the vampire played by Max Schreck in the 1922 German silent film Nosferatu is so absolutely creepy he still stands up after all these years.

Speaking of which, here’s a film clip of him doing just that – standing up. (I love this bit.)… Continue reading

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Forest of Reading trip: On to Toronto!

After London we all traipsed into Toronto. I visited a couple of libraries and chatted with students… a very lively group at the Danforth/Coxwell branch had a ton of great questions for me, grilling me mercilessly about how I wrote my book, and about the cartoon shows I’ve worked on.

Then it was time for the Main Event – the big big big Festival of Trees at Harbourfront.

IMG_6687A total zoo. In a good way. And here was the most astonishing thing of all… Continue reading

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Forest of Reading Trip, first stop London!

Wow, what a week I’ve had! From my quiet country life to the raucous, celebratory hullabaloo that is the Forest of Reading Festival! And now that I’m back home, on my sunny deck listening to the wee birdies twitter (actual birds, not the 140-character ones), I’m ready to share my adventures.

First stop was the mighty city of London, Ontario, and their first-ever Festival of Trees event.


Kevin Sylvester (author of the Neil Flambe series) and I arrive at the Progress Building fully caffeinated and ready to go. (photo by Kevin)

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