RAINING CATS AND DOGS – Fun With Idioms

“Children see magic because they look for it.” Christopher Moore This hyperbole meaning torrential rains has probably around since the sixteen hundreds according to Charles Earle Funk in his book Heavens to Betsy & Other Curious Sayings. We don’t use it much anymore, which seems a shame. It’s such a colourful, playful expression conjuring up

IN A BLUE FUNK*

“It’s supposed to be hard. If it wasn’t hard, everyone would do it. The hard is what makes it great.” Tom Hanks as Jimmy in A League of Their Own, staring Tom Hanks and Geena Davis. Dottie (Geena) wants to quit the baseball league, claiming it’s too hard. That’s the way I feel about writing.

THE VIEW FROM THE CHEAP SEATS – Neil Gaiman

I have not always been a Neil Gaiman fan. It took me a while to discover his immense talent and wisdom,. And I have to say it all started with Fortunately the Milk, which I absolutely adore. But this is not about Fortunately the Milk. Gaiman’s Newberry Award winning book The Graveyard held less appeal

Winds of L’Acadie Turns Ten!!!

It’s hard to believe that Winds of L’Acadie came out TEN years ago! I’ll never forget that feeling of seeing my book on the shelves at the bookstores for the first time.  What a thrill! That was the beginning of a whole new world. A world filled with creative people who were authors and illustrators

How to Begin With A Character

An alternative to giving students  a writing prompt, try having students begin by getting to know a character.  I have spent the past several months studying character development for my work-in-progress. Now I have put together some activities to help students get to know their characters. We start with the more superficial elements as students

READY, SET, WRITE

If you want to build a ship, don’t drum up people together to collect wood and don’t assign them tasks and work, but rather teach them to long for the endless immensity of the sea.”   ― Antoine de Saint-Exupéry School is back in! Some are cheering. Some are groaning.  (Mostly the parents are cheering and teachers

Questions To Ask Your Character (for young writers)

February is looming just around the corner, and with it comes Teachers’ Convention season in Alberta. In honour of teachers and the great work they do, I have decided to gear the next few posts to budding young authors. When it comes to getting to know your protagonist (main character) it might be fun to

Create A Class book

It’s getting to that time of year again. The time when my daughter begins to think about the tiny treasures she will find in each drawer of her special advent calendar. Ever since she received this cool 3D tree, with each individual drawer painted by her Nana,  Advent has become a much anticipated event. Who

Teachers Make A Difference

It’s Friday. Thank Goodness, you say, wondering if this frantic pace is ever going to slow down. It’s like a race without a finish line. You begin to wonder if you’ll be in an old folks home before you have time to put up your feet and have a cup of tea, without a stack