I once attended a conference where I was advised, as a blogger and a writer, to never critique a friend’s book. And while that conference advice I received may be respectable, that doesn’t mean I can’t tell the rest of the world to check out some awesome Canadian authors that I have the pleasure of knowing! The thing is, I have had inspiring people enter my life who have had their work published and it’s about time I recognize them on my blog. They have all motivated me in some way, and I am always in awe when someone publishes a book, especially now that I know the blood, sweat and tears that goes into it. So here goes….
Perhaps no introduction is needed: Richard is an award-winning author, teacher and friend. I came to meet Richard one blistery January evening, attending my first college creative writing class: Humber’s Writing Fiction for Young Adults. Richard was the professor and taught our small class (my current-writing group!) so much that semester and we grew into a tight knit group. After late night writing group sessions post-Writing Fiction for Young Adults, Richard ended up being my professor and mentor in The Humber School of Writers post graduate program. His candor, attention to detail, knowledge of the Y/A audience and word arrangements are just some of the things I appreciated about Rich’s advice and instruction.
I urge you to pick up one of Rich’s novels and get wrapped up in one of his clever, epic YA tales. I strongly recommend The Monkeyface Chronicles (winner of the 2011 White Pine Award), Cheeseburger Subversive (winner of the 2004 Young Adult Book of the Year Award, the 2005 White Pine Award, and the 2005 Stellar Book Award) and his newer works Nothing Man and the Purple Zero and poetry book Six Weeks, among others. His next book, The Indifference League is a fast-paced, witty read and is out this Fall. Stay tuned for more greatness! Blog: http://richardscarsbrook.blogspot.ca/ Website: http://www.richardscarsbrook.com/
John is a friend I met during my mentorship program at Entertainment Tonight Canada. As the Senior Writer on the ET Canada staff by day and a travel and beer lover by night, John is someone I easily meshed with as soon as I met him (his sarcastic and quick-witted personality just may have helped expedite our road to friendship).
When Ian and I attended the launch of his first book, Bullets, Butterflies, and Italy, I was so inspired by his fictional travel memoir (not to mention the fact that he self published his own book!) that I went home and immediately signed up for my first class at Humber College, which eventually led to my post grad. John helped me see that even with a full time job, a love of travelling and experiencing Toronto nightlife, you can still write a book if you put your mind to it. And not only has John written one book, but two. His second book Bulls, Bands, and London is also out now in print and on e-book. I guarantee you’ll want to pack your suitcase and jump on a plane for a European adventure after reading one of his stories, so what are you waiting for? Website: http://www.johnmeyerbooks.com/
Dr. Robert Metcalf:
Robert Metcalfe, or Dr. Bob as many refer to him as, is an old colleague of mine who self-published his own book while working full time in advertising sales. Bob completed his doctorate in Classics, with a focus on Herodotus. Bob used to tell me his routine was waking up and writing at least an hour before work every day. It inspired me to ensure I made time for my own writing, especially when I was building habits in the early stages.
Bob’s book, Simpson Agnostics, A History of a Crime, is a unique perspective on the OJ Simpson case and murder trial using philosopher Herodotus’s lost perspective as a guide. It’s a new take on the trial, and after all these years, it’s a fascinating read on an old case from a new angle. Order it here: http://bookstore.iuniverse.com/Products/SKU-000504696/Simpson-Agonistes.aspx
I met Paula in 2006, when we were both in our early twenties and working for a beer company, doing promotions. We always had fun when we worked together, throwing t-shirts out to a stadium full of people and handing out free beer, and I always admired Paula’s friendly and genuine personality.
I had no idea the issues that Paula had dealt with in her teens until I noticed her promoting her debut book, Weighing Love, on social media last Fall. In her book, Paula describes her own struggles with an eating disorder, demonstrates ways to break the barriers around dysfunctional relationships with food, and encourages women to love themselves and face their demons. Weighing Love is a truly courageous, inspirational endeavor and I applaud Paula for all the success she has had so far! She is changing the way women look at themselves. Truly inspirational. Website: http://paulagalli.com/
While all four of these people are drastically different and have published diverse genres of literature, I applaud them all and thank them for inspiring me, in their own ways.
Richard- the professional, well-known Canadian author and teacher.
John- the television writer by day and writer of travel fiction everywhere in between.
the writer of a factual yet philosophical take on real-life events.
the food therapist who used her own past and her current career to write a book to help others.
Check out their stories and be entertained/taught/encouraged/inspired.