Tag Archives: books

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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Weekly Eldritch: Kingdok!

Last week it was a painting from 1515, this week a character from a 90s graphic novel: Kingdok from Bone.

Bone1-090 Continue reading

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Weekly Eldritch: Arthur Szyk

Andersen’s Fairy Tales (1945) was one book we owned that really creeped me out as a child, partly because of the morose stories, but mostly because of the illustrations by Arthur Szyk (1894-1951).

2801 Continue reading

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School Talks, Day 2

IMG_3254Yesterday I visited Warren Park School, a smaller school with a lot of spirit… even on the day after Hallowe’en!


Even after a late night the students showed no signs of being tired, in fact they were abuzz with their love of stories. And after we talked a little about characters and the basic elements of plot, I heard that they went right off to their classes and busily started on their own stories!


Thanks for your enthusiasm and terrific questions, Warren Park!

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Writing Club: Killer Openings Part 2

In my last Writing Club post I wrote about two kinds of opening sentences, 1. Description, and 2. Action. Let’s continue …


This is an extremely popular and effective way to open a book. It can be in first person-

Call me Ishmael. (Moby Dick, Herman Melville)

Look, I didn’t want to be a half-blood. (The Lightning Thief, Rick Riordan)

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OLA Silver Birch nomination for Eldritch!

1226_silverbirch_logo_new1Very excited to get the news that Eldritch Manor has been nominated for a Silver Birch Award in the Ontario Library Association’s Forest of Reading program!

Ten books are nominated for the Silver Birch Fiction award, which is aimed at readers aged 8 to 12 (grades 3-6).  Readers from all across the country are encouraged to read at least 5 of the 10 books and vote on which should win.

I will post more news on the OLA Forest of Reading events as they come up, but for the moment, I’m just totally chuffed!

Will you read the 10 nominees? See the list here.


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Book Dominoes in Seattle

The Seattle Public Library sets a world record for longest book domino chain. Why are these so satisfying to watch?

p.s. Nice looking library!

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New Caillou books: Ecology Club series

DSC08985I’d almost forgotten about these! Last spring I wrote two picture books for Caillou, and I just received some copies in the mail now that they’re finally out.

They recruited me to write these because I’d story edited the tv series Caillou for a season, and wrote a pile of scripts for the show. These titles are part of their Ecology Club series:

Caillou learns to recycle

Caillou Learns to Recycle – in which Caillou’s daycare teacher tells the kids about what happens to the things we recycle, and what new products can be made from them.

fresh from the farm

Caillou – Fresh from the Farm – in which Caillou’s family visits a farmer’s market, and Caillou learns about local and seasonal foods.. and tries a new recipe.

This style of writing is certainly worlds away from fantasy fiction, but I can put on the Preschool Writing Hat when I need to! Which probably looks something like this…


p.s. Dang! I said it as a joke, but now I really want a Preschool Writing Hat!

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Arrival of Books!

My author copies have arrived in the mail! Tadaaaa!

(I keep thinking about Steve Martin in The Jerk: “The new phonebooks have arrived! The new phonebooks have arrived!”)

Sadly I hadn’t had my coffee yet when the box was delivered, so just did a mental ‘happy dance’. Still managed to pull a muscle though…

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