MACL alumna (2007); former Manager, The Flying Dragon Bookstore (children’s book store); Marketing and Publicity Director, Children’s Books HarperCollins Canada; Author; committee member, Canadian Children’s Book Centre Best Books for Kids and Teens; committee member, International Board on Young People – Canada, annual awards; CBC interviewee; book reviewer; instructor, writing for children; volunteer in children’s literacy and literature communities
My MACL degree has opened a number of doors for me. I was the manager at an award-winning, independent children’s bookstore for which I was recognized as Young Bookseller of the Year in 2011 by the CBA [Canadian Booksellers Association]. This job also led me to be consulted on two CBC radio panels, discussing children’s literature on a national forum.
I also review children’s books for Our Choice and CM and on my own blog, which has become very successful. My review work has been noticed and I have consequently served on the juvenile fiction selection committee for the CCBC’s Best Books for Kids and Teens as well as the IBBY selection committee.
Currently, I am teaching an online creative writing for children course through the Creative Writing for Children Society.
I presented a portion of my MACL thesis at the 2006 Child and the Book conference in Nanaimo. Following the conference, I was asked to submit a chapter to a book based on some of the presentations given at the conference. This book, published by University of Cambridge Press, should be available in 2011.
Creatively speaking, I have been able to see my most personal dream come true: I published my first middle grade novel with Scholastic Canada in Sept 2010 and my sequel will be out in Sept 2011. I am proud to say that I am a professional, working author, something I have always aspired to but never would have accomplished without the MACL program.
The MACL program was an inspiring, invigorating experience that gave me confidence in my abilities and knowledge and challenged me to think bigger and broader. I have met such wonderful friends and colleagues who I am still in contact with, all of whom went on to do exciting things. It was such an important incubation and exploration period for me as a writer and a person. The interdisciplinary nature of the program kept things varied and fresh. I treasure my experience and recommend the program to everyone I know considering grad studies in a related field.