Canadian Society of Children’s Authors, Illustrators and Performers<br>La société canadienne des auteurs, illustrateurs et artistes pour enfants

NOTES from Past Meetings

To extend the content of our monthly Toronto meetings to our full membership across Canada, we provide notes from these meetings on our website.
  • Wednesday, May 16, 2012 3:49 PM | Karen Krossing


    Congratulations to the following CANSCAIP members who are award winners and nominees:

    SCWBI Crystal Kite Award

    Lena Coakley won the 2012 SCWBI Crystal Kite Award in the Americas Division for her debut novel Witchlanders, published by Atheneum Books. The Crystal Kite is a peer award voted on by SCWBI regional members.

    CLA 2012 Young Adult Book Award

    The Canadian Library Association is pleased to announce the 2012 Young Adult Book Award winner and Honour Books for books published in 2011. All Good Children by Catherine Austen, published by Orca, is the winner. The Honour Books are Karma by Cathy Ostlere, published by Penguin Canada, and This Dark Endeavour by Kenneth Oppel, published by HarperCollins.

    CLA 2012 Book of the Year for Children Award

    The Canadian Library Association has selected its 2012 winning title for the Book of the Year for Children Award. This year’s winner is The Whole Truth by Kit Pearson, published by HarperCollins. The Honour Books are Dragon Seer’s Gift by Janet McNaughton (published by HarperCollins) and That Boy Red by Rachna Gilmore (published by HarperCollins).

    Amelia Frances Howard-Gibbon Illustrator’s Award

    The Canadian Library Association is pleased to announce the 2012 winner and honour books for the Amelia Frances Howard-Gibbon Illustrator’s Award. The winner is My Name is Elizabeth! (Kids Can Press), illustrated by Matthew Forsythe and written by Annika Dunklee. Honour books are Small Saul (Kids Can Press), illustrated and written by Ashley Spires, and Migrant (Groundwood Press), illustrated by Isabelle Arsenault and written by Maxine Trottier.

    Ruth and Sylvia Schwartz Children’s Book Awards

    The 2012 shortlist for the Ruth and Sylvia Schwartz Children’s Book Awards include:

    Children's Picture Book Award Category

    • Picture a Tree, by Barbara Reid, Scholastic Canada
    • Migrant, by Maxine Trottier, illustrations by Isabelle Arsenault, Groundwood Books

    Young Adult / Middle Reader Award Category

    • No Ordinary Day, by Deborah Ellis, Groundwood Books
    • Scribbling Women, by Marthe Jocelyn, Tundra Books
    • Blink & Caution, by Tim Wynne-Jones, Candlewick Press
    • That Fatal Night, by Sarah Ellis, Scholastic Canada
    • The Whole Truth, by Kit Pearson, HarperCollins Publishers Ltd

    The 2012 winners will be announced on May 31, 2012.

    Finalists for the 2012 Newfoundland and Labrador Book Awards

    Presented by the Writers’ Alliance of Newfoundland and Labrador and the Literary Arts Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador, this year the awards are honouring excellence in the categories of fiction and children’s/young adult literature. The finalists for the Bruneau Family Children’s/Young Adult Literature Award include the Dragon Seer’s Gift, written by Janet McNaughton, HarperCollins Canada.

    Shortlists for the 2012 Arthur Ellis Award

    The Crime Writers of Canada have announced the shortlists for the 2012 Arthur Ellis Awards. The finalists for Best Juvenile/YA Crime Book include:

    • Blink and Caution, written by Tim Wynne-Jones, Candlewick Press
    • Empire of Ruins: The Hunchback Assignments III, written by Arthur Slade, HarperCollins Canada
    • Missing, written by Becky Citra, Orca Book Publishers

    Prizes will be announced on May 31.

    2012 Rocky Mountain Book Award

    Susin Nielsen's Dear George Clooney, Please Marry My Mom (Tundra Books) is the Gold Medal Winner of the 2012 Rocky Mountain Book Award, a readers’ choice program, which invites students to choose the best book from a shortlist. The Alberta-based program is designed to stimulate the reading interests of students in grades 4-7.

    Saskatchewan Book Award

    At the 19th Saskatchewan Book Awards, thirteen awards were given out celebrating excellence in writing and publishing in Saskatchewan, including one for children's literature. Adele Dueck took home the honours for her novel Racing Home (Coteau Books).

    Winners of the 2011 Willow Awards

    The winners of the 2011 Willow Awards were announced in Saskatchewan. Winders included:

    Shining Willow (Kindergarten - Grade 3)

    • The King's Taster, written by Kennth Oppel, illustrated by Steve Johnson and Lou Fancher, HarperCollins

    Diamond Willow (Grades 4-6)

    • The Midnight Curse, written by L.M. Falcone, Kids Can Press

    Snow Willow (Grades 7-9)

    • Dear George Clooney, Please Marry My Mom, written by Susin Nielsen, Tundra Books

    Winners of the 2012 Hackmatack Awards

    The winners of the Hackmatack Children’s Choice Book Award 2012 were announced in Moncton, New Brunswick. Hugh Brewster, author of Prisoner of Dieppe: World War II, was the winner in the English fiction category. Catherine Rondina, received the English non-fiction award for her book Don’t Touch That Toad & Other Strange Things Adults Tell You.

    2012 Helen and Stan Vine Canadian Jewish Book Award

    Lesley Simpson's Yuvi’s Candy Tree (Kar-Ben Publishing) is the winner of the 2012 Helen and Stan Vine Canadian Jewish Book Award in the youth category. A program of the Koffler Centre of the Arts, the Helen and Stan Vine Canadian Jewish Book Awards celebrate excellence in contemporary Canadian writing that reflects Jewish themes and subjects.

    Manitoba Young Readers' Choice Award

    Susin Nielsen's Dear George Clooney, Please Marry My Mom (Tundra Books) is the winner of the 2012 Manitoba Young Readers' Choice Award (MYRCA). Kenneth Oppel's Half Brother (HarperCollins Canada) and Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch's Stolen Child (Scholastic Canada) were named the 2012 honour books.

    The nominees for the 2013 MYRCA list have been announced. These include:

    • Against All Odds by Natale Ghent, HarperCollins
    • The Case of the Missing Deed by Ellen Schwartz, Tundra Books
    • Dragon Seer's Gift by Janet McNaughton, HarperCollins
    • Dragon Turn by Shane Peacock, Tundra Books
    • End of Days by Eric Walters, Doubleday
    • Fly Boy by Eric Walters, Penguin
    • Ice Storm by Penny Draper, Coteau Books
    • This Dark Endeavour by Kenneth Oppel, HarperCollins
    • The Tiffin by Mahtab Narsimhan, Dancing Cat Books
    • Timber Wolf by Caroline Pignat, Red Deer Press
    • True Blue by Deborah Ellis, Pajama Press
    • Undergrounders by David Skuy, Scholastic Press
    • Witchlanders by Lena Coakley, Atheneum Books

    Ontario Library Association Festival of Trees

    The Ontario Library Association hosted the 2012 Forest of Reading Festival of Trees in May. CANSCAIPers include:

    Silver Birch Fiction Award

    • Undergrounders, David Skuy, Scholastic Canada

    Silver Birth Non-fiction Award

    • Don’t Touch That Toad & Other Strange Things Adults Tell You, written by Catherine Rondina, illustrated by Kevin Sylvester, Kids Can Press

    Silver Birch Express Award

    • When Apples Grew Noses and White Horses Flew, written by Jan Andrews, illustrated by Dušan Petričić, Groundwood Books

    Red Maple Award

    • Half Brother, by Kenneth Oppel, Harper Collins

    White Pine Fiction Award

    • The Gathering, by Kelley Armstrong, Random House
  • Tuesday, May 15, 2012 1:40 PM | Helena Aalto (Administrator)
    SOMETHING FROM NOTHING - based on the book by Phoebe Gilman and produced by CASCADE THEATRE will be at the Toronto Fringe Festival this July. 

    All shows are at the PALMERSTON LIBRARY THEATRE: 560 Palmerston Ave (just north of Bloor St. 2 blocks west of Bathurst)

    TICKETS:  online 
    By phone - (after June 15) 416 966-1062 x 1 
    At the door TICKETS ARE : $10 adults - $6 children INFO – 416 469 2878 

    SHOW TIMES Saturday, July 7, 2012 - 7:15pm - 8:15pm Sunday, July 8, 2012 - 11:00am - 12:00pm Monday, July 9, 2012 - 4:15pm - 5:15pm Tuesday, July 10, 2012 - 12:45pm - 1:45pm Wednesday, July 11, 2012 - 2:45pm - 3:45pm Friday, July 13, 2012 - 7:45pm - 8:45pm Saturday, July 14, 2012 - 2:15pm - 3:15pm Sunday, July 15, 2012 - 3:30pm - 4:30pm
  • Monday, May 14, 2012 1:45 PM | Helena Aalto (Administrator)
    The Shuswap Association of Writers presents its Ninth annual festival for readers and writers, "Word on the Lake", Salmon Arm, May 25-27

    Keynotes are Ivan Coyote and Sylvia Taylor, plus 11 other award-winning presenters. 

    Visit for registation forms and discounts, biographies, workshop schedule, information on applying for bursaries and alternative accommodation and more.
  • Monday, May 14, 2012 1:34 PM | Helena Aalto (Administrator)
    Ted Staunton will once again be leading the one week WRITING CHILDREN'S BOOKS course at this summer's Haliburton School of the Arts. The course runs July 30 - August 3, from 9:00-4:30 each day. It includes a Blue Pencil segment for works in progress by participants. The registration fee is $299.74. To register, go to the Haliburton School of the Arts website, click on HSTA Part Time Calendar, and click on the course name listed alphabetically under the week of July 30. For further information, contact Ted at tedstaunton at sympatico dot ca. 

    In September Ted Staunton will again be leading the long-running WRITING FICTION FOR CHILDREN I & II for George Brown College. The classes take place Tuesday and Thursday evenings respectively, in the wonderful Mabel's Fables book store (on Mount Pleasant, two blocks south of Eglinton). A second session of class I is offered Monday evenings at the College itself and is led by Rick Book. Originated by Peter Carver, the courses have been the launching pad for the writing careers of numerous CANSCAIPers. Registration is via the George Brown website. Contact Ted at tedstaunton at sympatico dot ca for further information about the classes.
  • Monday, May 14, 2012 1:27 PM | Helena Aalto (Administrator)
    Magnolia Cottage, in Victoria, BC is available for a vacation stay from June 1st to August 31st. 

    Magnolia Cottage is a beautiful, new cottage in an ideal location for your vacation. Enjoy this lovely setting that is near beach access and parks like Vantrieght Park and Ferndale Forest Park. The entrance is warm and inviting, welcoming you with potted plants. When you open the front door, you see a fully functioning kitchen equipped with everything you need. The home includes all high-end appliances. The cabinets, countertops and flooring are well constructed and have a modern elegance. Adjacent to the kitchen, there is a nice eating area where there is an espresso coloured table with four chairs. Contact Lily for details: lily dot erlic at shaw dot ca
  • Thursday, May 10, 2012 9:00 AM | Helena Aalto (Administrator)

    An international conference on children’s literature entitled From the Garden to the Trenches: Childhood, Culture and the First World War will take place May 10-12, 2012, at three locations: Brock University in St. Catharines, Ontario; the Osborne Collection of the Toronto Public Library; and Trinity College at the University of Toronto. It will bring together Canadian and international writers and scholars.


    From the Garden to the Trenches is the second of three international conferences in the Approaching War research project supported by the Leverhulme Trust, marking the approaching centenary of the First World War. The Canadian conference will focus on childhood, culture and war from the perspectives of the Americas and the Caribbean. The first conference, held in Sydney, Australia, in 2011, focused on the global south, and the third, focusing on Great Britain and Europe, will take place in Newcastle, Great Britain in 2013.


    The Canadian conference will be held in two locations over three days, beginning at the White Oaks Conference Centre in Niagara-on-the-Lake, sponsored by Brock University, then moving to the Osborne Collection of Early Children’s Book and Trinity College in Toronto on the second and third days respectively.


    Confirmed speakers include British author Michael Morpugo and seven Canadian authors for young people: Hugh Brewster, Deborah Ellis, Sarah Ellis, Linda Granfield, Kevin Major, Arthur Slade and John Wilson.


    For information on From the Garden to the Trenches, visit


  • Friday, April 27, 2012 3:35 PM | Helena Aalto (Administrator)
    Who? For authors and/or illustrators with new children’s books being released in the fall of 2012 and/or spring 2013 who are interested in touring schools, libraries, bookstores and community centres, outside of their home province, during TD Canadian Children’s Book Week 2013. 

    What? The next Book Week tour will run from Saturday, May 4 to Saturday, May 11, 2013. 

    When? The deadline for applications is Friday, May 25, 2012.

    How? Authors and illustrators who are interested in touring should visit the Book Week website under ‘Information for Artists’ ( for complete application details and to download the application form.
  • Thursday, April 26, 2012 8:00 PM | Helena Aalto (Administrator)
    9th Annual Albert Lahmer Memorial Lecture with SARAH ELLIS 

    Sowing Seeds in Danny, Dorothy, Dennis, Dillon and Destiny: A Century of Library Service to Children 

    As we celebrate the centenary of children’s librarians at the Toronto Public Library and look back to the early decades of library service to children let’s examine some of the specific books and stories that lay behind that mission. What were those seeds that Lillian H. Smith and her disciples were sowing with such energy, idealism and creativity? And how did they get away with it? 

    Thursday April 26, 8 p.m. Lillian H. Smith Branch, Community Room 239 College Street (at Huron) The Osborne Collection of Early Children’s Books. 

    This program is sponsored by the Friends of the Osborne and Lillian H. Smith Collections Please call 416-393-7753 for more information. Free admission.
  • Thursday, April 26, 2012 6:00 PM | Helena Aalto (Administrator)

    BEN MCNALLY'S BOOKS 366 BAY STREET (just south of Richmond on west side)

    6 - 8 P.M. (short author talk at 6:30 p.m.) 

    Please drop by and help me celebrate the launch of my first novel for children - TIME SNATCHERS (ages 10 and up). Feel free to bring friends and family! 

    I'll be giving a short talk at 6:30 p.m. Refreshments provided. 

    Here's the description from my publisher: Time Snatchers A thrilling middle-grade sci-fi... "The year is 2061, and Caleb’s world is crashing down around him. The small group of orphans who were also “adopted” by Uncle used to feel like family, but both the competition to be the top time snatcher and the punishment for failure have gotten fierce. Time traveling to steal priceless objects can be a thrill, but with bully Frank trying to steal his snatches, his partner Abbie falling for Frank’s slimy charms, and Uncle planning to kidnap innocent kids to grow his business, Caleb starts thinking about getting out. But there is no place on earth, past or present, that is safe from Uncle’s tentacles, and runaways get the harshest punishment of all. Will Caleb risk everything to fight for the future he dreams about?" 

    Looking forward to seeing you there! 


  • Monday, April 09, 2012 2:53 PM | Karen Krossing

    Congratulations to the following CANSCAIP members who are award nominees:

    Shortlist for the 2012 Atlantic Book Awards

    The Atlantic Book Awards Society is pleased to announce the full shortlist for the nine different book prizes that make up the 2012 Atlantic Book Awards. Winners will be announced at a special awards show on May 17 in St. John’s, Newfoundland. These shortlists include the following titles by CANSCAIPers:

     Ann Connor Brimer Award for Children’s Literature

    • Betsy Wickwire’s Dirty Secret, Vicki Grant, HarperCollins Canada

     Lillian Shepherd Memorial Award for Excellence in Illustration

    • A Day with You in Paradise, illustrated by Patsy MacKinnon, written by Lennie Gallant, Nimbus Publishing
    • Monkeys in My Kitchen, illustrated by Sydney Smith, written by Sheree Fitch, Nimbus Publishing

     The Bruneau Family Children’s/Young Adult Literature Award

    • Dragon Seer’s Gift,  Janet McNaughton, HarperCollins Canada

    Shortlist for the 2012 Violet Downey Book Award

    The shortlist for The National Chapter of Canada IODE Violet Downey Book Award, value $3000, has been announced. The Award is offered annually for the best young children’s English-language book containing at least 500 words of text. The winner will be announced at IODE Canada’s National Annual Corporate Meeting on May 26. This shortlist includes the following titles by CANSCAIPers:

    • Dragon Seer’s Gift, Janet McNaughton, HarperCollins Canada
    • That Fatal Night, Sarah Ellis, Scholastic Canada
    • This Dark Endeavour, Kenneth Oppel, HarperCollins Canada
    • Timber Wolf, Caroline Pignat, Red Deer Press

    IBBY Canada Announces 2012 Honour List Children’s Books

    IBBY Canada, the Canadian National Section of the International Board on Books for Young People, is delighted to announce the selection of Canada’s IBBY Honour List of children’s books for 2012. This list includes the following titles by CANSCAIPers:
    • ENGLISH TEXT: The Nine Lives of Travis Keating, Jill MacLean, Fitzhenry & Whiteside
    • TRANSLATION ENGLISH TO FRENCH:  L'oeil de la corneille (Eye of the Crow),translated by Pierre Corbeil from English text, written by Shane Peacock, Bayard Canada livres
    The IBBY Honour List is a biennial selection of outstanding books for children, selected by a jury, to represent the best recently published children’s literature in each country. IBBY Canada’s Honour List titles, and Honour List titles from many other countries, will be presented at the 33rd IBBY World Congress in London, England in August 2012.

    2012 Alberta Literary Awards Shortlist

    The Writers Guild of Alberta (WGA) is thrilled to announce the finalists for the 2012 Alberta Literary Awards. The Alberta Literary Awards recognize and celebrate the highest standards of literary excellence from Alberta authors. Winners will be announced at the Alberta Book Awards Gala in Calgary on Saturday June 9, 2012These shortlists include the following titles by CANSCAIPers:

    R. Ross Annett Award for Children’s Literature

    • Ghost Messages, Jacqueline Guest, Coteau Books
    • Karma, Cathy Ostlere, Puffin Canada

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