Category Archives: Inspiration

The Great Canadian Clothes Race

Every few years I decide that it’s time to update my wardrobe and shake things up. We go through stages in life, and once in awhile you need to reinvent your appearance to reflect the inner changes. I mean sure, you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover … but let’s face it. We all judge books by their cover and choose whether or not it’s a book we want to read.

I’ll be the first to admit that I have no fashion sense. I never have, and I’ve accepted that I never will. Deciding what colours look right together, or what styles are cool is kind of my kryptonite. And like all good superheroes, when I find a weakness in myself I look for sidekicks who can make up for my shortcomings.

In choosing a sidekick for this particular task, I usually find a female friend (or in this case two) who I think have a good fashion sense and will be fun to spend the day with. This time around I drafted my friends Bonnie and Sandra, whom I had met while working at Kidsbooks. We all found a rainy Sunday to dedicate to this task, and spent nearly 8 hours picking out clothes. (Actually, they picked out clothes. I trusted their advice and paid the bills.)

When the day was over Bonnie and Sandra took snapshots so I could remember how to put together these outfits. Here’s a sampling of the photos, and I’ll let you decide for yourselves if they did a good job or not.


This is the “before” shot as we arrived at Bonnie’s with our findings.
(I picked out the orange shirt myself. Now do you understand why I need help?)


This is what we found!

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Spring Book Hatching 2007!

The Spring Book Hatching was a resounding success! With anywhere from 300-500 people (depending on who you ask), we kept a packed house of revolving (meaning not the same all day) people who came out to meet their local authors.

A big thanks goes out to the Spring Book Hatching planning committee, namely kc dyer, Diane Haynes, Melonie Jackson, Jaquie Pearce and Lee Edward Fodi. I also feel the need to thank Pam Withers for suggesting this idea to me during her 2005/2006 Presidential term over CWILL.

For those of you who couldn’t make it, here are some photos.

A Great Review

What one student had to say…

In school, we are told to suppress our creativity. We have to write generic essays, follow one formula for math and learn certain words in French class. Last spring, I got the wonderful opportunity to go to a writers conference. Each student at the conference got to go to two workshops, one of them being James McCann’s. The workshop was filled with excitement, because all of that suppressed creativity was being released. His workshop helped thirty potential writers find another way to write.

After the workshop I sent him my story that I had been working on for quite some time, Alone in the Dark. The next day, he sent me a list of suggestions that I could use to make my story better, as well as a list of places to get my story published. Long story short, my story got published in Wet Ink and Potluck Magazine. Without James’ help my story would have not been published, let alone I would not have known where to go to get it published.

-Sarah, a student from

the Surrey Young Author’s

Conference 2006

Nearly Forgot About Book Expo & SBH

For those of you attending Book Expo in Toronto this weekend, or the Spring Book Hatching here in Vancouver, this is a poster that you can pick up.
The poster was designed by Andrea Armstrong, a very talented graphic designer. The character was drawn by Jen Moore, who has done artwork for TV (such as the Masters of Horror TV show where the book RANCOUR appeared as a prop!).

An Actual Writing Post

Being that I’m an author, I suppose I should add a post or two about writing. This past weekend (being that my weekend consists of only one day) was awesome. I got home from school on Saturday around 6pm, after running two very fun workshops at CWC. This week we discussed poetry, which isn’t exactly my strong point. In all honesty, the only poems I can recite from heart would probably get me fired.

But there it was Saturday evening and I wondered what I should do. I had the option of meeting some friends for a movie, but instead I opted out and headed for my local 24-hour cafe and wrote. I’ve been writing the third instalment to my Rancour books, only because that seems to be what’s coming out of me. Truthfully, I’d much prefer to be writing about Galen in ancient Sparta but, well, Kane Prophet has a story to be told and he’s insisting it be told first.

My students asked me once what inspires me. I told them a story of how I was walking through Metrotown (a.k.a. the Third level in Dante’s Hell), where I came upon a store called Millennium. Inside, there was a wall of swords and I found one with this amazing brown wooden sheath and great hilt.(How’s that for masterful description?) When I picked it up I said to myself, “This is Kane’s sword. This is what he uses to go after the vampires.” So I bought it.

This sword has been my inspiration now for several weeks, and this story has just been flowing through me. (I’m having a hard time not making a Hiro reference, but I imagine most of you are tired of reading about my superhero obsession.) Sometimes I pick up the sword, and I imagine how Kane would feel having to fight evil with it.

And then I go back to my regular life.