Reviews  (August 29, 2011)  ZORGAMAZOO: Reviews “A natural descendant of the ...    Behold! Gügor Speaks!  (June 17, 2013)  At the end of May, at Book Expo America 2013, peop ...    Dust City Nominated for the 2012 Red Maple Award  (October 18, 2011)  Good news, everyone. Dust City has been nominated ...    My Five Favourite Children’s Books  (August 30, 2011)  My Top Five Favourite Children’s Books Congr ...    2 Things I Love About Japan  (November 21, 2011)  I recently returned from an extended trip to Japan ...    The Imaginarium of Doctor Weston  (February 17, 2012)  This spring (2012), I’ll be leading a series ...    Dust City Shortlisted for the 2011 CLA Young Adult Novel Award  (March 2, 2011)  Wow, more good news, everyone! I just found out Du ...    The Myth of the Silver Bullet Book  (December 20, 2011)  Last month, I was the MC at a fundraiser for The C ...   
VOL. Fri 23 Mar 2018
    Whoops, nothing planned right now...

Happy Book Birthday, Sakura!

Today is the 20th of February 2018, which means: Happy Book Birthday to Sakura's Cherry Blossoms! This is my first picture book, with illustrations by the Japanese-American artist, Misa Saburi. As some readers may know, I have many connections to Japan. In my twenties I lived there and my wife is from Kanazawa, sometimes known as "Little Kyoto". I have a strong interest in Japanese history, language and philosophy, and since I was writing a seasonal Japanese story, it made sense to choose a Japanese poetic form. That form is called tanka. To celebrate the publication of the book, here are five things about tanka poetry you might not know. 1. Tanka poetry is old The earliest tanka poems

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Zorgamazoo—now en Français!

Excellent news everyone. At long, long last there has been a new translation of Zorgamazoo! As you might imagine, finding someone—anyone—to translate this book is harder than finding pearls of wisdom in a Trump-brand clam. But thanks to Rosalind Elland-Goldsmith, a brave and superbly talented translator, and the fearless souls at Editions du Seuil it has been done! And check out the cover by Roland Garrigue. How cute is this? Look at Morty with his little teeth! Look at Katrina with her oddly shaped noggin! Look at the strange beast hovering above them! What could that be?! It's a perfect blend of darkness and quirk—two of my favourite flavours. Many, many thanks to Rosalind and

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The Liars League (or Reading Aloud for Grown-Ups)

Earlier this month, one of my short stories was featured at the Liars' League, a kind of live action literary journal. It's a monthly reading series where professional actors read new short fiction. This might seem like an obvious combination, akin to writing for the stage, but as far as I know the event is relatively unique (not counting other chapters of the League operating in other cities). On the night, I learned the idea for the Liars' League sprung from a somewhat dull reading, in which actors in that crowd were disappointed by the writers' renditions of their own work. They thought, why not let us give it a go? There is a certain (somewhat brutal) truth here—sometime

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Happy Loving Day!

It will always strike me as odd to think that if were I born a few years earlier, my whole existence would be illegal in many parts the U.S. Until the summer of 1967, sixteen America states still had laws prohibiting human beings of difference "races" from getting married and having children together. The law was struck down as unconstitutional on June 12 of that year, in the now famous Loving versus Virginia, in which Mildred and Richard Loving fought for the right to fall in love with, marry and reproduce with a person of their choosing. The Lovings were married in 1958 in Washington, D.C.—where interracial marriage was legal at the time—but were arrested upon returning

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What I'm Looking Forward To in 2016

To whom it may concern (i.e. anyone who experiences the passage of time): Happy New Year! With some welcome holiday downtime, Machiko and I celebrated with some baking (and punning). Our logic went like this: In Western Europe, the winter holidays have a strong association with gingerbread. In Japan, the biggest celebration in December is New Years, when most people make a visit to their local Shinto shrine. The Japanese word for shrine is "jinja" (神社). Jinja...ginger...see what we did there? It's looks like this:   2016 ought to be an eventful and interesting year. Here're some things I'm looking forward to. January: Electronic Superhighway is an art exhibition at the

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Breakfast with Dr. Seuss

This week a strange, unexpected, and rather wonderful thing happened. I appeared on television. And I have Dr. Seuss to thank. It happened like this... In 2013, a nearly complete manuscript by the famous American children's poet, who died in 1991, was found by his wife, tucked neatly in a box and hidden away in his home. It was a book called What Pet Should I Get? and starred the same boy and girl from his most famous work for early readers, One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish. Flash forward two years to yesterday and the book was at last hitting bookshelves across North America. BBC Breakfast, BBC One's morning chat show, were looking for someone to talk about the good Dr.'

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