I write to understand the world. It’s that simple. I love how a gorgeous string of words can alter my perceptions, widen my view of the world. Words have incredible power. They can inspire us to do great things. They can make us laugh or cry. I’m continually fascinated by the power of words to move me.
Archives for March 2009
Earlier this year, I decided I had enough free time to increase my volunteer activities. Just as I was making this decision, I got an offer I couldn’t refuse from one of my favourite organizations. I’m pleased to announce that starting November 2009, I’ll be vice-president of CANSCAIP – the Canadian Society of Children’s Authors, Illustrators, and Performers. What I like about CANSCAIP is its commitment to mentoring both new and emerging creative people. If you’re interested in writing, illustrating, or performing for children or teens, check out one of CANSCAIP’s monthly meetings or its annual conference Packaging Your Imagination.
Last week, I visited a grade 12 English class at Vaughan Secondary School in Thornhill, near where I grew up and went to high school. Every school visit is unique, but what makes this one stand out for me is the interesting activities the class had done with my novel Take the Stairs. It’s the second time this year that a high school teacher has contacted me with innovative teaching ideas for this book. I’m thrilled to observe how people use the book, and how they react to it. I hope to post these activities on my website soon, including ideas about exploring the etymology of characters’ names, linking song lyrics to stories in the book, and illustrating the setting. (Below you can see the Vaughan students’ illustrations of The Building from Take the Stairs.) In the meantime, thanks to Diane Tursman and her students for sharing their insights.