Tuesday, September 30, 2014

New Nonfiction Titles: One World Trade Center

One World Trade Center is one of the tallest buildings in the world and is located in the heart of New York City. The new World Trade Center complex is part of the plans to rebuild and provide a fitting memorial for all the victims of the September 11 attack.

Find out more about this impressive structure in One World Trade Center, part of the Virtual Field Trip series. Published by Weigl Publishers, August 2014. 

You can learn more about One World Trade Centeras well as my many other non-fiction titleson my website.

Monday, September 29, 2014

The Complete Guide to Writing Science Fiction: Volume One - First Contact

Interested in writing science fiction? Check out The Complete Guide to Writing Science Fiction: Volume One - First Contact, one of the most comprehensive writer's guide to creating science fiction. My own chapter in the anthology is entitled Science Fiction for Younger Readers Aged Eight to Twelve, but there's something in this book for everyone. 

The Complete Guide to Writing Science Fiction leads the writer from the pitfalls and clich├ęs of a first story to selling and promoting a novel, and the writing life beyond. Topics range from the history of SF to alien creation, world building, space travel, and future medicine ­a perfect reference and writing guide for someone wishing to write science fiction. In addition to my own contribution to the anthology, chapters are written by other established professionals as well as up-and-coming talents, including Jeanne Allen, Bud Sparhawk, Piers Anthony, Michele Acker, Milena Benini, Bob Nailor, Orson Scott Card, Michael McRae, Ian Irvine, Tina Morgan, Will McCarthy, Darin Park, Kim Richards, and Carol Hightshoe.

Here are just a few of the reviews:

“The Complete Guide to Writing Fantasy is a broad compendium of advice and resource material developed and compiled by writers who understand the struggle involved in mastering the craft.”

“In short, if you were going to look up ‘experts’ to talk to about some aspect of the world you are building, these are the people you’d ask.”

“All aspiring and newly established science fiction writers should read The Complete Guide to Writing Science Fiction before sending out their manuscripts.”

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Coaching and Workshops for Writers

I offer workshops and presentations for both adults and children for community associations,home schooled students and summer camps, as well as services for writers including coachingmanuscript editing and evaluation, plus online workshops for children and for adults. 

I conduct creative writing workshops with community associations and have run workshops and made presentations as part of summer camp programs in Calgary and the surrounding area. I also work as an instructor at the University of Calgary and at Mount Royal University, conducting one day classes and evening sessions for adults who are interested in writing for children and young adults. I’ve also conducted similar workshops for adults for community associations, professional writer’s groups, public libraries and am available as a speaker for keynote addresses, conferences and other events.

Contact me directly for further details about coaching and workshops.

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Writing for Children and Young Adults - Classes at Mount Royal University in November/December

Writing for Children and Young Adults. Evening classes at Mount Royal University in Calgary from November 12 to December 3, 6.30 pm to 9.30 pm. 

Explore the process of writing books for children and young adults aged 8 to 12. Focus on structure, character development and research, and their importance in your stories. Examine how to turn a creative story idea into a marketable, finished manuscript.

Registration is available here at the Mount Royal University website.

Friday, September 26, 2014

New Nonfiction Titles: Drones

Unmanned Ariel Vehicles (UAVs), or drones as they are commonly known, are aircraft that are operated by remote control. They can carry a range of sophisticated equipment such as transmitters, sensors, cameras, and weapons. The U.S. military has used drones and governments are interested in using drones for law enforcement and border patrols. 

Drones have potential for commercial and personal use, although this does raise complex issues regarding privacy and congested air space over major cities. In remote areas, drones are also an option for protecting endangered animals.

Drones is part of the Global Issues series, published by Weigl Publishers, August 2014.

You can learn more about Dronesas well as my many other non-fiction titleson my website.

Meet Your Local Authors Book Fair in NW Calgary - Saturday, October 4

Join me at the Meet Your Local Authors Book Fair in October. The event takes place at Parkdale Community Centre in NW Calgary on Saturday, October 4 from 10 am to 4 pm. More than 30 authors will be in attendance to meet their readers, autograph books and answer questions about their work in a showcase of local talent. 

Genres include children's books, YA, teens, adult fiction and nonfiction, biographies, history, self-help, and many more.

Parkdale Community Centre is located at 3512 5 Avenue NW. Hope to see you there on October 4.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

School Visits, Presentations and Workshops

I offer a variety of presentationsauthor in residence programs and conduct workshops for children at schools. 

I offer a variety of presentations for grades three to eight, but can work with grades one and two as well. I cover such topics as where ideas come from, story structure, editing and revision, character development, time travel stories, history and research, plus many other aspects of writing and publishing. 

I will present to around one hundred students at a time, although we can also look at workshops with smaller groups or individual classes. Each of my novels provide ideas for classroom projects and you may find some suggestions on the Study Guides page on my website. 

Contact me for details of fees and availability for school presentations.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Writing Historical Fiction: Online Writing Course - October 20 to November 30, 2014

Historical fiction combines the events of the past with characters and stories from the writer’s imagination.

This course examines the art of writing of historical fiction and the need to fully immerse yourself in a particular time period to make your storytelling more believable. Learn how to write effective, authentic and appealing historical fiction and how to turn your ideas into compelling stories. Understand what defines historical fiction and different historical time periods, create believable settings and plausible characters and learn how research plays a crucial role in the creation of your novel.

The course involves assignments, discussions, and writing exercises, and also deals with aspects of the writing process. The course also examines ways to research publishing houses where you can submit your work, cover letters, synopses and sample chapters.

All course materials, assignments, feedback, and assessments are sent to students by email. Group discussions will take place throughout the course depending on the number of students that are registered.

Register here for Writing Historical Fiction Online Course.

Course Dates: October 20 to November 30, 2014.

Course Fee: $350, plus GST.

Details of the course content are available here on my website

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Flashback - Coming Soon

Flashback, my ninth novel, will be published by Tyche Books  in early 2015. Here's a brief synopsis.


Lots of kids have an imaginary friend. Max certainly did. His friend was a little boy who liked all the things Max did, enjoyed the same games, and who even looked a little like him. Then one day, Max’s friend said something that scared him. Max never saw his friend again.

Several years later, Max’s imaginary childhood friend returns – older, wiser, and disturbingly real. Max learns that his friend is actually the ghost of David Dexter, who lost his life when he stumbled upon a deadly conspiracy involving secret mind-control experiments, rogue scientists, government cover-ups, and murder. David tells Max of events concealed for over twenty years, events that someone will go to deadly lengths to keep that way.

Max must journey into his friend’s past, actually reliving the final weeks of David’s life. Max faces danger at every turn, not knowing how his actions will affect what he knows as reality. 

Tyche Books is a Canadian small-press specializing in science-fiction and fantasy anthologies, novels, and non-fiction, all available as ebooks and trade paperbacks. They crave innovative stories that push the boundaries of our imaginations. Tyche want to discover new voices and propel established authors further along their journey. Based out of Alberta, Canada, Tyche is the new home of BOLD Science Fiction, Fantasy and related Non-Fiction.

Monday, September 22, 2014

New Nonfiction Titles: Nelson Mandela

Nelson Mandela was a highly respected political leader and humanitarian. As the first black president of South Africa, Mandela was well known for his political activism and fight to end apartheid. 

This book is part of the Icons: History Makers series, published by Weigl Publishers, August 2014.

You can learn more about Nelson Mandelaas well as my many other non-fiction titleson my website.