Writing the last chapter

  I took my camera for a walk this morning. With summery weather rolling over us like a heat tsunami, I’ve moved my walks to earlier in the day, before the sun burns my skin on contact. Marmots were hanging out atop their condos. Cranes were swinging over construction sites. Leaves were enjoying the evaporating dew. As I wandered the… Read more →

You’re not too old, but start NOW

Sheryl Sandberg’s (Facebook CEO) May 2016 commencement address at UC Berkeley is a gem. She talks about 3Ps that will help you get through, and past, anything. She also tells the story of her grandmother, who managed to acquire a university degree in spite of having to drop out of high school to help support her family. That made me… Read more →

Another learning curve

When it comes to marketing, I’m on a constant learning curve. So I decided to listen to the experts who encourage us to add videos to the mix. Only thing is, where on earth to start? What to include? (And if you recognize overwhelm, fear and procrastination in there, you’re a canny observer.) Last night Robin and I watched a… Read more →

Children’s books anyone can enjoy

My short stint as an elementary school librarian and longer stretch of taking the stage as a storyteller taught me an important lesson about books and stories for the younger set: A first-rate story for children can be enjoyed by people of any age. I hadn’t read children’s books since I was a child myself until I found myself faced… Read more →

The best writing teacher

CBC’s North By Northwest played a song this morning that reminded me of my mother. One line in particular caught my ears, “Mother’s in the garden with the bees.” The words took me back to a frequent scene from my childhood — mother’s back, bent over her beloved flowers, cherishing each one as she removed the weeds around them. A… Read more →

Positive stories make us better people

Most of us fret about being constantly bombarded by negative news, violent movies and grisly action games. We worry children are being influenced by the onslaught, that the world is a dangerous place, that things are out of control. As real as those fears may be, Steven Pinker and other researchers have discovered we live in the most peaceful era… Read more →

If all critics were like this one…

  His face was carefully polite, but his body told the story. His grandmother showed him the book I’d just written. The eight-year-old’s face showed no flicker of interest. He leaned toward the book, then shrugged. He was reading the Narnia series. A children’s picture book was for little kids. Surrounded by four aging adults, he quickly lost interest in… Read more →

Seriously, what’s your secret?

    One of my favourite writing sites on Facebook is Beth Isaacs’s Writers etc. She shares resources and ideas for writers and encourages members to add things that keep us inspired. A month ago she posted a link to a post entitled, “It’s Never Too Late To Start Writing – When 27 Famous Authors Were Published.” Most of them… Read more →

Non-artist’s path to creating a children’s book

Yes, I’ve been completely absent here. It’s this children’s book series that’s been gnawing at my mind for a long time. I’ve been waiting for talent to strike or for my bank account to finally fatten enough for me to hire an illustrator. Neither happened. No miracle walked in the door. So I just got busy. Writing and photography are… Read more →

Playing with Lightroom

The 2016 CreativeLive Photoshop Week is way too much fun. The live webinars are free all week and can be purchased individually or as a package. I’m learning things about Photoshop that will make my work with it far more productive and interesting. Lightroom is on the webinar schedule as well. I use it almost daily but what I learned… Read more →

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