Monday, May 23, 2011

At BEA this week!

BEA stands for the Book Expo of America and it takes place in NY (or at least has for the last several years). It's a great time, fun publishing parties, free books, lots of authors etc. I'm going this year to meet my editor Nancy Conescu in person for the first time, and to re-connect with some other awesome publishing folk (including my AMAZING agent Jessica Regel). I'm also sitting on a panel at the end of the week at the Backspace Writers Conference.

Also I have a lot of friends in NY and I just love the city in general.

As always I'll post a re-cap upon my return, but until I do . . . let's walk down memory lane . . . my recaps from previous years . . .

BEA 2010
BEA 2009
BEA 2007

Friday, May 20, 2011

TIMOTHY AND THE DRAGON'S GATE shortlisted for the Red Cedar!

I was seriously delighted a few years ago to learn that ALEX AND THE IRONIC GENTLEMAN had been nominated for the Red Cedar Award out in BC. For those of you who don't know the Red Cedar is, here's a brief description:

The Red Cedar is British Columbia’s
Young Reader’s Choice book award. Every year, thousands of children between grades 4 and 7 from across the province are invited to read books from the nominated lists of non-fiction and fiction titles and vote for their favourite.

Well I am very very excited to announce that TIMOTHY AND THE DRAGON'S GATE got shortlisted for the 2011/2012 award this time!

It's such a cool award, and I am an uber fan of any award voted on by the actual readers, ie the kids.

So thank you so much to the Red Cedar committee and of course to BC and the awesome that is Western Canada. It's an honour.


Here's a full list of nominees:

Red Cedar Fiction 2012 Nominees

The Dread Crew by Kate Inglis
Wanting Mor by Rukhsana Khan
Rex Zero: The Great Pretender by Tim Wynne-Jones
Walking Backward by Catherine Austin
After the Fire by Becky Citra
Faerie Rebels: Spell Hunter by R.J. Anderson
The Ship of Lost Souls by Rachelle Delaney
The Giant Slayer by Iain Lawrence
Zoobreak by Gordon Korman
Dear Canada: A Desperate Road to Freedom Karleen Bradford
Timothy and the Dragon's Gate by Adrienne Kress
The Prince of Neither Here nor There by Sean Cullen

Red Cedar Information Award 2012 Nominees

Charlie: a Home Child’s Life in Canada by Beryl Young
Learn to Speak Music by John Crossingham
The Insecto-files by Helaine Becker
Big Train: the Legendary Ironman of Sport by Lionel Conacher. Richard Brignal
Fighting for Gold by Lorna Schultz Nicholson
Pharaohs and Foot Soldiers by Kristin Butcher
Animal Aha! Thrilling Discoveries in Wildlife Science by Diane Swanson
It’s a Snap! George Eastman’s First Photograph. Monica Kulling.
Whispers from the Ghettos by Kathy Kacer & Sharon Mckay
Hoaxed: Fakes and Mistakes in the World of Science by The Editors of YES Magazine
How to Build Your Own Country by Valerie Wyatt.
100% Pure Fake by Lyn Thomas
Out of this World: The Amazing Search for an Alien Earth by Jacob Berkowitz
You Are Weird: Your Body’s Peculiar Parts and Funny Functions by Diane Swanson
Kaboom! Explosions of all Kinds by Gillian Richardson

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Climbing into a Bookshelf in Four Easy Steps

Because my life isn't just acting and writing . . .

I'm moving at the end of the month to my very first home that I actually own (well, condo), and the packing has sort of taken over everything. Fortunately I have a very savvy cat that keeps me entertained.

(the boxes you see him in are FrogBoxes - a company that rents out reusable boxes for moving, really cool)





Friday, May 13, 2011

My Canadian National Steampunk Exhibition Video is finally up!

Yup! I know y'all have been waiting for it, and finally it's here! Thanks to the amazing Nadine Bell and MakeGoWork who helped me edit the thing together, I now have a lovely 5 minute video of some of what made the Canadian National Steampunk Exhibition so totally awesome!

So, here below is my report on the con, my very first attempt to produce and direct a segment like this. I got some pretty cool interviews with the likes of Meinert Hansen - concept/design artist for such films as the 300, Spiderwick Chronicles, Stranger Than Fiction and Silent Hill; musician Genevieve Young from Psyche Corporation; and the gang from Mental Floss Sideshow, who gives us a lovely exclusive performance. And of course many others (including some of Professor Elemental‘s fabulous show).

Check it out!

Friday, May 06, 2011

A couple cool "me" things . . .

Like the title suggests . . . here's a couple cool things about me that I've discovered recently.

First - Kirkus reviewed CORSETS & CLOCKWORK, and my story "The Clockwork Corset" got a nice special mention along with two other stories (yay!):

"The best stories are those that most closely adhere a fairly traditional definition of steampunk in manners, machinery and punk spirit, like Frewin Jones’ weirdly wonderful “The Cannibal Fiend of Rotherhithe,” with its half-mer cannibal heroine and a plucky boy who might be true love or just a snack; Adrienne Kress’ “The Clockwork Corset,” high romance with a spunky cross-dressing heroine; and Kiersten White’s excellent closing tale, “Tick, Tick, Boom,” whose narrator is a machinist and noble’s daughter who falls for an anarchist."

Next - Nathan, the French publisher of ALEX is re-releasing it as a mass market paperback. And they are doing it with a brand spanking new really fantastic cover.

Here is the cover:

Here is the artwork on its own (click on it to see it in larger detail - Giggles the cat makes me laugh out loud - lol, as it were):

And here are a couple sketches of the cover as a work in progress:

The latter images I discovered just by accident on the artist's blog: Le Grand Vrac! Check it out, he's got some amazing illustrations and images in general up.

Lastly - the Canadian Steampunk Exhibition has been getting some decent press around the net. I'm still working on putting my video together (or rather my awesome editor friend is working on the rough cut right now), but in the meantime check out these links covering the event (I'm even mentioned in the Torontoist!) - SPACE (Canada's SyFy channel), Studio 12 News - the event is covered at the 7:50 mark.

Monday, May 02, 2011

Canadian National Steampunk Exhibition Report

So the Canadian National Steampunk Exhibition was this past weekend and it was bloody brilliant! I had such a great time, meeting some really cool new people, and sitting on some truly awesome panels.

My favourite panel of course would have to be the one where I did a reading from THE FRIDAY SOCIETY. It was the first time I'd ever shared the book with anyone aside from my editor and agent, and I am very happy to report that the audience seemed to enjoy it. They laughed at the right spots, and came up to me after to compliment me on the writing, saying they couldn't wait to read the whole thing. If only 2012 wasn't so darn far away! The reading was moderated by the fab Liana K who asked some really cool questions, and there was a lot of audience participation and we had some pretty sweet conversations going. Thank you so much to all who came to listen to me, it meant a lot.

But my other panels were nothing to sniff at either. I learned a lot from my fellow panelists on both of them: Kenneth Shelley, J. M. Frey, Mike Perschon and Alexandra Gerlach. We each had our own interests in Steampunk, from writing fiction to costuming, to Mr. Perschon doing, you know, his PhD on the subject. Really really cool.

What was also cool? Well everything. Professor Elemental's brilliant rap performance in the evening ("When I say Earl Grey you say Lovely!"), I've never raised the roof with my pinky finger before. Meeting a host of very talented people who I'll be featuring in a video I'm editing together on the con - stay tuned. Seeing all the awesome wares for sale, and just chillaxing in the green room with delightful funny and brilliant people.

Special thanks go to Adam Smith, Liana K, and Lee Ann Farruga for organising the event. It ran like a well oiled machine - maybe something with lots of moving clockwork parts maybe - and this was the very first CNSE ever. Well done! Here's hoping for many many more!

My photographs are few and far between as I was also filming a lot of the con. Said final video will go up once it's actually edited together. And of course the con had so much going on and so many different parts to it, that I just couldn't be all places.

With that said, here are the few pictures I DID take.

First of all . . . me.

Here are my two outfits I wore that day. Hardly as spectacular as some that were present, but I think they were still pretty cool. Day wear and evening wear, augmented with my amazing Steampunk jewelry which I shared in a post below:

This is Professor Elemental and his performance (Kenneth Shelley is milking the audience for more applause):

This is author J.M. Frey and me photographed with the good professor:

A Steampunk Captain Kirk:

Me and the amazing concept/design artist (he worked on 300, Spiderwick Chronicles, Stranger Than Fiction etc) Meinert Hansen:

How amazing is he? Well see this picture I took of Kenneth Shelley and Ashley Regimbal-Kung?

In twenty minutes, sitting on that couch that we were photographed on together, laptop in lap . . . Mr. Hansen turned it into this:

I know. Seriously amazing right??

Last but not least . . . a mouse wearing chainmail and holding a dagger: