Posts Tagged ‘Book Tour’

My Week in Calgary – Part 3



I visited two of the Calgary Public Library branches on my trip out west – branches, so I was told by Anne O’Sullivan, who drove me to both of them, that only rarely got visits from authors. Thank you, Anne.

Glenmore Square Library

Glenmore Square Library

At the first, Glenmore Square, I was met by Suman Gangopadhyay, the branch supervisor – so much enthusiasm for her job and the community programs she was able to implement.

A class of grade fives arrived, some of whom had read The Nine Lives of Travis Keating.

I only had 45 minutes with them, not nearly long enough. A wonderful group of kids. In the Q/A, one girl asked me if I knew the ending of the book when I began…what a great question!

Shaganappi Library

Shaganappi Library

The second day, in the Shaganappi Branch, I was greeted by Joey Sayer, also so helpful and kind. A mix of grades four, five and six.

One of the teachers had hooked the students on Nine Lives, and Joey had collected their questions for me. Somehow the conversation segued to how my grandson helps out with “techy” questions, including the intricacies of Modern Warfare, and how Stuart always beat me hands down. A lot of the boys there obviously knew about Modern Warfare, so I read the poem about it (swearword omitted) from Nix Minus One. It was really fun.

Libraries, as I must have said at least six times on this blog, are among my favourite places on earth. Where else can you be given access to so many books – and they’re free. Think on it. Free.

My Week in Calgary – Part 2





More on my recent visit to Calgary, courtesy of Pajama Press.

A week ago Tuesday, we spent the day with Heather Parsons, a sales rep from Michael Reynolds and Associates. Bright, energetic, great sense of humour, and very very good at her job – thanks, Heather! I signed a lot of books that day.


Pixie Hollow Books in High River, Alberta

Our first stop was Pixie Hollow Books in High River, about an hour south of Calgary. A delightful store, with the best chai latte I’ve ever had.

And guess what? While I was there I found out that Martine Leavitt, whose writing I’ve long revered, lives in High River. She was kind enough to come to the bookstore, where she signed my copy of her brilliant, grim, and very courageous free-verse novel, My Book of Life by Angel. Such a pleasure to meet her! Thank you, Martine.

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Owl’s Nest in Calgary


Owl’s Nest, Shelf Life Books, and Chapters in Chinook Mall took the rest of the afternoon, then in the evening I did a reading at Monkeyshines Children’s Bookstore – and was delighted when my daughter-in-law’s brother, who lives and teaches in Calgary, walked in the door. The only thing better than having a Newfoundlander present when you read from Nix Minus One is having family there.

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Window display for Nix Minus One in Monkeyshines Children’s Bookstore, Calgary


My thanks to Sue Hill of Monkeyshines for a terrific window display and lovely treats.


Reading from Nix Minus One



Signing Sue Hill’s Authors’ Wall – I was in very good company!

My Week in Calgary – Part 1



Pajama Press, my publishers for Nix Minus One, flew me to Calgary last week. And what a week! So much went on, that there’ll be at least two instalments to this blog.

The major event was the Calgary Children’s Literature Round Table on the evening of the 22nd.

Supported by United Library Services, the event was billed as “Two Celebrated Canadian Authors.” I spoke first, followed by Ken Oppel – now he is a celebrated author.

I’d reread Silverwing before I left Halifax, and read Sunwing on the flight to Calgary – and enjoyed both so much. Imaginative, original, and exciting. So it was a real pleasure to meet Ken, listen to his talk, and exchange ideas on how we write.

Illustrating my talk with excerpts from Nix, I spoke about the power of experience and of imagination to shape our narratives.

Keep reading – we writers need you!










On the road again….



I had a wonderful morning in Bedford South School the week before last. The grade four students had each written a short book about an animal of their choice, all the way from a squid to a red-eyed tree frog.

The teacher – what a woman! – had arranged a group book launch, with parents and other classes invited. And I was invited, too. Such fun to see everyone’s wonderful writing and drawings, a very creative class. Thank you, grade fours!


Another good review for Nix Minus One, this one in the Calgary Herald.

You can find it on Nix’s home page on my website.


I’m in Calgary this week, so the timing of the review is great.

Monday, I’m at the Children’s Literary Roundtable, with Kenneth Oppel – very exciting.

On Tuesday we spend the day at bookstores in Calgary and Pixie Hollow, an hour or so south of Calgary.

On Wednesday and Thursday, library readings, with grades four, five, and six.

Home on Friday.

A busy week!

It’s supposed to snow while I’m there. So here – as an antidote – are the crocuses in my garden



What’s Coming Up?


We’re working on an invitation to the launch for Nix Minus One

in Halifax NS on Sunday afternoon, April 14

at the Writers’ Federation of Nova Scotia.


We hope to send it out this week.


And Pajama Press, my wonderful publishers,

have arranged, in cooperation with United Library Services,

that I attend the Children’s Literary Roundtable in Calgary on April 22.

Kenneth Oppel will be there, so that’s exciting.

I plan to visit some schools while I’m in Calgary,

and also Monkeyshines children’s bookstore.


We’re into March now – never my favourite month.

Dirty snow, grey days.

The photos below show my perennial garden after our last blizzard –

and the tulips that – I hope – will be blooming in May!

What is to come

End of Winter Snow












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The Hidden Agenda of Sigrid Sugden
Jill MacLean's latest book The Hidden Agenda of Sigrid Sugden , published by Fitzhenry & Whiteside and is available in bookstores and on-line!

This book is the completion of the Newfoundland trilogy which started with The Nine Lives of Travis Keating, followed by The Present Tense of Prinny Murphy.

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Nix Minus One

Jill MacLean's book Nix Minus One , published by Pajama Press and now available in bookstores!

Nix Minus One is geared for readers in Grade 7-8 and up.
Published February 15, 2013


Jill MacLean's books on Goodreads

Home Truths
Home Truths

reviews: 34

ratings: 143 (avg rating 4.20)

The Present Tense of Prinny Murphy
The Present Tense of Prinny Murphy

reviews: 14

ratings: 69 (avg rating 4.19)

The Nine Lives of Travis Keating
The Nine Lives of Travis Keating

reviews: 26

ratings: 91 (avg rating 4.16)

Nix Minus One
Nix Minus One

reviews: 6

ratings: 13 (avg rating 4.15)

Brevity of Red, The
Brevity of Red, The

ratings: 1 (avg rating 3.00)