News & Events
Launch Parties, book clubs, get togethers...hope to see you there! You can also read about them here:
Dec. 14, 2019
Meet the Authors at Haven Books
Larry McCloskey and I were thrilled to return to Ottawa’s Haven Books at 43 Seneca St., near Carleton University, for a Meet the Authors event. It’s the second time that this special book store has hosted a Dog-Eared Books reading and signing, and Larry and I appreciate their support. Sharing time with our friends and readers was a great way to kick off the holiday season! Of course, our Santa hats also helped us get into the spirit.
Dec. 2, 2019
Visit to École Saint-Jean, Aurora, Ontario
I had a fantastic visit in early December with students at the French-language École Saint-Jean in my hometown of Aurora, Ontario. It was great to be back in the city of my youth and the trip was made even more special by the school visit and presentation. I met an incredibly enthusiastic group of readers-aspiring writers!
I talked about my Maryn O’Brien YA series and shared what it’s like to be a professional writer. I described the steps involved in writing a book of fiction and then work-shopped an outline with the students. The kids and I created an outline for a YA crime story involving a bank robber named Julien. Their storyline included safe-cracking at a casino, a broken criminal alliance and ended with a police chase featuring a wild turkey! There was no shortage of imagination and I returned inspired by the students’ energy and enthusiasm.
Exhibiting at the Capital Spokes Bike Rally and Rodeo
The summer kicked off with a great event organized by Capital Spokes. Their annual bike rally was followed by an exhibit and lunch at the Ottawa Tennis & Lawn Bowling Club. It was a real pleasure to share my bike-themed Maryn O’Brien Series with such an appropriate audience and I was glad to exhibit alongside fellow author and former Capital Ward councilor David Chernushenko. It was a particular pleasure to meet his daughter, avid young reader Anna.
Meet the Authors at Haven Books and Café
A warm and generous crew turned out to Haven Books at 43 Seneca St., near Carleton University, for a meet and greet with Larry McCloskey and yours truly. It was Ottawa’s first Intergenerational Day, proclaimed by Mayor Jim Watson, to celebrate the value of relationships between generations with activities designed to bring together people of all ages. I was thrilled that our event attracted the young and young-at-heart as I read from Critical, the third and newest book in my Maryn O’Brien series. I’m always interested in seeing and experiencing audience responses to the material and this time was no different. Thanks to all who attended and to the folks from Haven.
Book Club Meeting of the Minds
This group of 11-year-old girls bowled me over with their sharp curiosity and insight when I joined them (and their moms) at their Mother and Daughter Book Club session as guest author. The young readers talked about what they might have done if they’d found themselves facing the same challenges as Maryn O’Brien. They proposed better strategies for coping with stress and “busy-ness” and talked in detail about the trappings of cell phone use and social media.
Holiday Art and Book Sale
It is so satisfying signing one of my own books when it is a Christmas gift for a young reader! I had the privilege of joining painters Cara Lipsett and Ruth Browning, and author Larry McCloskey for a cozy winter afternoon at Larry and Cara’s beautiful home in Old Ottawa South sharing our work with neighbours and friends.
Series Endorsed by Almonte Bookstore
I felt so proud seeing all three volumes of the Maryn O’Brien series prominently displayed at Mill Street Books in Almonte, Ontario at peak Christmas-shopping time. The best part was the accompanying note penned by co-owner Mary Lumsden who wrote: “This is a great series by an Ottawa author for sports-loving readers. Mountain biker Maryn balances the demands of school, practice, and family. Try it out! Mary.”
More than 200 art and book lovers attended an artistic collaboration organized by Dog-Eared Books Publishing House that included readings by three local authors (myself included), a musical performance by a singer songwriter, and a gallery of stunning paintings by three local artists. Anne Robinson, who attended the event from Manotick, Ontario, sent the following note afterwards: “Loved the combined cultural community—literary, visual and performing—coming together. It’s wonderful! Such an inspirational event and a welcome diversion these days."
Library Visit, Lanark
Writing the words “library” and “kids” together always makes me happy! When I was guest author on this sunny Saturday afternoon at the Lanark Public Library, I was so pleased with the turnout of young children and the fantastic discussion that followed my reading. The kids and grown-ups in attendance talked about what our communities would be like without libraries. Their passion for libraries was palpable and stayed with me for many weeks afterwards. I was delighted to be invited back as guest author for the library’s Teen Book Club this winter.
Book Club Meeting, Orleans
I was thrilled to be the guest author at a recent book club meeting in Orleans, Ontario. The club’s members are serious adult readers who discuss one Young Adult selection per year; and, this time, they chose my first book Crash Course! Most of these passionate readers are moms of teenagers involved in athletic or other competitive pursuits. They shared how much they loved getting inside of Maryn’s head to better understand their own children’s struggles. They also appreciated the book’s gentle but serious handling of themes like anxiety, bullying, and substance abuse. They all said they will recommend the book to their kids.
Click here to see 2017 and 2016 events