9th Annual Writers’ Trust Awards

Last night, the 9th Annual Writers’ Trust Awards was held at the Isabel Bader Theatre in Toronto. The following award winners were announced:

  • Writers’ Trust of Canada/McClelland & Stewart Journey Prize
  • Vicky Metcalf Award for Children’s Literature
  • Writers’ Trust Notable Author Award
  • Writers’ Trust Award for Distinguished Contribution
  • Writers’ Trust Non-Fiction Prize
  • Rogers’ Writers’ Trust Fiction Prize

Congratulations to Marthe Jocelyn on being this year’s recipient of the Vicky Metcalf Award for Children’s Literature. This award honours a Canadian author of children’s literature whose body of work is judged to demonstrate the highest literary standards.

In her more than twenty books for preschoolers, elementary school children and young adults, Jocelyn demonstrates a rich versatility with genre, medium and style. She has published compelling narratives in a wide range of genres, including young adult realism, historical fiction, biography/memoir, fantasy and picture books. The emotional range of tone in her work is as broad and deep as her exploration of genre: she writes with equal conviction in the voice of satire, comedy and tragedy. Inventiveness, humour, and a sharp understanding of human nature underlie her work for all ages.

She is a visual artist as well as a verbal one, as her numerous picture books show. Her collage art glories in the beauty and grace of the child’s domain, rich in artefacts, objects of play and contemplation. Her subtle use of endpapers and framing, textured materials, fabrics and found objects — her use of real “kid things” — creates a visual world of identity, interest and choice, showing the creative possibilities and thoughtfulness in the child’s world.

– 2009 Vicky Metcalf Award for Children’s Literature Jury
Deirdre Baker, Julie Johnston and Judith Saltman

Congratulations to all the winners this year! Jian Ghomeshi, of Q on CBC Radio One, hosted the ceremony. He did a great job and kept the event on schedule. From left to right: Jian Ghomeshi, Annabel Lyon, David Bergen, Yasuko Thanh, Brian Brett, Marthe Jocelyn, and Politics & the Pen.

We would like to thank the jurors – Deirdre Baker, Julie Johnston, and Judith Saltman – for all their work. Thank you to everyone who attended the event and cheered for Marthe Jocelyn and gave a round of applause to Publisher, Kathy Lowinger. Finally, thank you to the Sponsors, Board of Directors, Authors’ Committee, and the staff at Writers’ Trust of Canada.

Shane Peacock at McNally Robinson Don Mills this Thursday!

Join two-time TD Children’s Literature Award nominee, Shane Peacock, as he discusses his Boy Sherlock Holmes series and reads from the third book in the series, Vanishing Girl.

When: Thursday, November 26th, 2009 at 7:00p.m.
Where: McNally Robinson Booksellers, 1090 Don Mills Road (Corner of Lawrence Avenue East and Don Mills Road), Toronto, ON M3C 0H9
Info: http://www.mcnallyrobinson.com/toronto-events

Image courtesy of Quill & Quire

The Best Children’s Books of the Year

The Best Children’s Books of the Year
List compiled by the Children’s Book Committee
of the Bank Street College of Education

Here are the Tundra books that made the list this year:

Word Nerd
Written by Susin Nielsen
ISBN: 978-0-88776-875-0
CDN Price: $20.99
US Price: $18.95
One uber nerd, one ex-con, a love of words, a budding romance … put them together and voila, a wonderful novel about coming into one’s own.

Dear Toni
Written by Cyndi Sand-Eveland
ISBN: 978-0-88776-876-7
CDN Price: $16.99
US Price: $14.95
A novel with the look and feel of a journal that reveals the heart of a special twelve year old.

The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde: The Graphic Novel
Adapted by Alan Grant
Illustrated by Cam Kennedy
CDN Price: $12.99
US Price: $11.95
The classic story of good and evil, retold by the graphic novel dream team of Alan Grant and Cam Kennedy.

Visit the Bank Street College of Education: Children’s Book Committee’s website for more information. This is their 100th anniversary edition of The Best Children’s Books of the Year. This special edition of their annual booklist was published in September 2009.

2009 Canadian Children’s Book Centre Awards

This year, Tundra had a number of finalists for the TD Canadian Children’s Literature Award, the Marilyn Baillie Picture Book Award, and the Geoffrey Bilson Award for Historical Fiction for Young People. We had all received lovely gold coloured invitations and were all invited for a glamorous night at the Carlu.

This was my first time at the Canadian Children’s Book Centre Awards and I was excited (but I totally played it cool). Pamela had told me that it would be a great event and last night did not disappoint (aside from us not winning).

Pamela and I left the office around 6:00 pm and swiftly arrived at the Carlu. There was a red carpet leading to the elevators. Interestingly enough, we shared our ride up to the 7th floor with the Fleck Family and Marilyn Baillie! Then, those elevator doors opened… and wow. I glanced at Pamela and she gave me the “I told you this gala is great” look.

The place was decorated with costumed bears. Here’s one that mimics love stories. I remember spotting a pirate, a mermaid, and an astronaut bear.

What an amazing atmosphere: the music, the chatter (who is going to win tonight?), and the clink of glasses. There were hot food stations, hor d’oeuvre, and drinks going around. A lot of Tundra’s authors and illustrators were there, most of our finalists were able to attend (they were not feeling nervous at all), and it was really nice to meet or see everyone.

The awards ceremony began at 7:00 pm with Eleanor Watchtel as our MC for the night.

The Norma Fleck Award for Canadian Children’s Non-Fiction went to The Bite of the Mango. Congratulations to Mariatu Kamara and Susan McClelland!

The Geoffrey Bilson Award for Historical Fiction for Young People went to The Landing. Congratulations to John Ibbitson!

The Marilyn Baillie Picture Book Award went to Mattland. Congratulations to Hazel Hutchins, Gail Herbert, and Dušan Petričić!

Finally, the TD Canadian Children’s Literature Award went to Shin-chi’s Canoe. Congratulations to Nicola I. Campbell and Kim LaFave!

Before we left, we were handed an environmentally friendly bag with the 2009 TD Grade One Book Giveaway Program’s book: Let’s Go! The Story of Getting from There to Here by Lizann Flatt and illustrated by Scot Ritchie.

Thank you to everyone at the Canadian Children’s Book Centre, to the jurors, to the sponsors, and to the wonderful staff that made the event a fantastic night! Until next year!

Theo Caldwell at Chapters Waterloo this Saturday!

Don’t miss Theo Caldwell at Chapters Waterloo this Saturday, November 21st at 1pm as he reads from his first novel, Finn the half-Great.   After the reading, Theo will be available to sign copies.

Finn the half-Great is a delightful read…The novel is a quest fantasy with moments of humour and high emotion, epic battles and daring deeds…. a rewarding reading experience.” – Quill & Quire

Chapters Waterloo
428 King Street North
Waterloo, ON