Tag Archives: author

A new Site and New Covers

Have you ever wondered what would happen in the event of a zombie apocalypse? Maybe you fancy yourself a survivor, or you’re just all too aware that you’d be lucky to make it to the end of the first day.

There are many places where you can get information for zombie survival, the CDC for example.

This year I’m releasing an old novel with a new look and title. Rise of the One-Eyed King will be released as Children of Ruin. May 1st the paperback comes out, followed soon by an audio book and a choose your own adventure app for your mobile device!

To celebrate, just for fun, I asked several author friends to take this quiz and use their results as inspiration on what makes them a good (or terrible) candidate for a zombie apocalypse colony. Over the next few weeks I’ll be posting their responses.

How would I fair in a zombie apocalypse?

My strengths:

(1) I have some basic martial arts skills.
(2) I can shoot a bow with accuracy.
(3) I can fish and filet a fish.
(4) I have a dog. (Well, okay, a pekingese.)
(5) I can camp. (But I better not wear the rainbow pants that weren’t even cool in 1986 when this photo was taken.)

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So, I must have done well on the quiz, right? RIGHT? Sigh. Nope.

See below:

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I suppose “heroic death” is better than “tripped while running” in a zombie apocalypse.

Take the quiz and let me know how you did!

Jeremy Tankard’s Hungry Bird Booklaunch

Last night I had the pleasure of seeing long-time friend Jeremy Tankard launch his newest creation, Hungry Bird, at Vancouver Kidsbooks. As a library tech who does storytimes with preschoolers, I’m familiar with his other books. A favourite with the kids is Grumpy Bird, as you can read the book as an interactive with the kids acting out the animals plus you can discuss how you know when someone is angry and what we can do when we’re angry.

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Along comes Hungry Bird, also a familiar feeling for the young and old. “Who brought me something to eat?” is the theme of this book, and again this will be an amazing picturebook for storytimes and early education. You can buy a copy from any retailer.

Congratulation, Jeremy, on an amazing book!

 

 

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Birch Bay Rollback Weekend

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On August 13th I took a drive down to Birch Bay for their 2nd annual Rollback Weekend. This was a flash back to the cars of the past, with music and hot dogs and people dressed up with clothes from the 50s and 60s.

This has become one of my favourite spots to visit, and is the location where my next book will take place. I’ve been spending a lot of time there over the past few weekends, and this particular day was one of my favourites. Here are a few photos of my favourite vehicles.

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1975 Jeep CJ 5

 

The Jeep, no surprise, has always been among my favourite vehicles. It’s rugged, tough, and just looks cool. In high school and well into my 20s I drove a *cough*deathtrap*cough* 1977 CJ7 3-speed, and so when I saw this CJ 5 I immediately wandered over to it. I have a lot of fond memories driving around Winnipeg in that CJ 7 with my buddies piled in, the roof off, and the music blaring.

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Zombie Apocalypse Vehicle

This vehicle obviously gets a lot of second looks on the road. And I bet no one tailgates him.

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Truck that I’m pretty sure was inspired by Mad Max

 

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VW Camper Van

A big part of my childhood was spent camping in one of these with my uncle. We took trips from Winnipeg to Florida, Winnipeg to Los Angeles, and many, many others. No doubt a big part of why I love the road trip even now as an adult.

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’71 Dodge Charger 440 CI Magnum

This is my second favourite car after the ’72 Cuda.

There’s much to love about Birch Bay if you’re in the area and looking for a fun spot to spend the day. After the car show (and a very questionable hot dog) I hiked up the highway to the Birch Bay Cafe, where I sat and sipped a latte and wrote. And of course, the theme song for this post should have been obvious. Because black cars do look better in the shade…

James in His Jeep Getting Java–The Squamish Edition

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Last weekend I took a road trip to Shannon Falls near Squamish, BC. This time, pal Marcie asked to come along and I welcomed the company. Of course, as I’ve blogged about before, there is a risk when travelling with someone as opposed to going solo. Solo, I stop where I want, leave when I want, and do whatever I want. In a nutshell, I get to be selfish–and in order to recharge sometimes people need to be selfish. But when you’re travelling with someone, you have to be considerate of the fact that they may not want to see the same sights, or stay as long, or they may get upset with you when, for the millionth time, you’re lost.

Marcie was a terrific travelling companion and I put her to the test. Driving out of Vancouver I got turned around and couldn’t find the road that lead to the highway–she laughed and directed me so we wouldn’t spend the day circling one-way streets. Once on our way, we headed to Shannon Falls!

Just before Shannon Falls, there’s overflow parking to the left. I highly recommend using the overflow, especially if you visit on a busy long weekend like we did. Or, you could do what I did and make another wrong turn while attempting to find the overflow and wind up in the campground next door to it–which was where we took the photo of me beside the jalopy below.

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Across the highway (there’s a pedestrian crossing with lights from the overflow to Shannon Falls) we found a walkway that lead to the falls. While the park was beautiful and the falls were incredible, there really wasn’t much to do and after twenty minutes we were looking for more trails.

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We found two paths–one that sloped down, possibly to a river, and one that lead up (and up and up and up) to the Chief, which is not a hike for beginners or for those with the wrong shoes–such as my Blundstones. At first Marcie thought it might not be so bad, but after a short climb we both agreed that we should see where the other path leads.

We expected to find a river, as that was where it seemed to head. However, it came out of the forest where the new Sea to Sky Gondola was situated. It was still early in the day, and Marcie said she was up for it if I was–so we went inside to see about getting tickets. What we discovered, is that there are two places to buy tickets. Inside where we went, at the info desk, there was no line up. Then, when we went outside to the cable car area, we found another ticket booth and a long line-up of people. (>insert evil chortle<)

There were two types of cable cars, and we took the one on the left (we assumed the one of the right was for supplies).

The view is amazing, and for those who may be scared of heights (like I am) this cable car felt very secure. It was an extremely windy day, but the cable car stayed pretty still.

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Photo credit Marcie Nestman.

 

When we got to the top, we discovered that there was a wedding going on. So I took photos, because that’s what one does when one sees a wedding in a public place. In case you want to book your wedding there, here’s the link.

At the top there’s a restaurant, gift shop, snack bar, and two smaller food kiosks. There are plenty of picnic tables if you bring your own food (such as what we did), and the walks around the summit are easy and short with amazing views. The suspension bridge was fun to cross.

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Photo credit Marcie Nestman.
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Photo credit Marcie Nestman.

When we decided it was time to leave, the line up for the cable car was very, very long. It does move very, very fast though–so no need for stress. We lucked out when an attendant asked if we liked dogs, as there was one in a cable car and no one wanted to ride with him. We said yes, and thus I made a new friend below. (I don’t recall his name, but in my defence he probably doesn’t remember mine either.)

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Normally, I end the post with a theme song, but today, since Marcie is an accomplished actress, I’m ending with her latest commercial.