On September 22, 2019, we celebrated 35 years of writing children’s books! We gathered with a group of well-wishers at the Moose Jaw Public Library for readings, cake, door prizes, and a whole lot of reminiscing.
In 1984 Alison Lohans and Gillian Richardson, both emerging children’s authors who lived in Regina, Saskatchewan, decided to start a writing group. Thirty-five years and well over 150 books later, the Children’s Writers’ Round Robin is still going strong — and Alison and Gillian are both still a part of it while other writers have come and gone (and sometimes come again).
Here is Alison’s blog post reflecting on the past 35 years of being a Robin, and here’s to many more years to come!
The first was at Seven Stones Community School on February 24, 2015. She was joined by Mike Keepness, who illustrated the book, and Ray Lavalee, Medicine Man and Wisdom Keeper of the Piapot First Nations Reserve. Ray is the Cree elder who gave Judith the legend in the book, and he opened the session with an invocation to the students to remember where they came from and who they are. Mike joined Judith in answering students’ questions after Judith’s reading.
The event was covered by CJME , cbc.ca, and the Regina Leader Post, and picked up by the Vancouver Sun, the Ottawa Citizen, and Canada.com.
The second event was March 21 at the Indian Metis Christian Fellowship building. After the reading, her audience enjoyed bannock and, appropriately, bison soup.
In August 2014, Linda Aksomitis and Sharon Plumb presented this slideshow at the Chinook Teachers Association annual conference. It describes some of our recent books in various age and genre categories and gives links to curriculum goals.
This is a photo of the participants at the first Alberta-Saskatchewan Children’s Writing Conference in 1995. It was held at Jackfish Lake, and is the forerunner of the CANSCAIP Prairie Horizons conferences that now take place every two years at Lumsden. (Both places are in Saskatchewan.)
Who are these mystery people? We’ve identified some of them, but if you know others, please leave a comment below. Click on the photo for a larger view.
The people we have identified:
Theresa Heuchert, Gillian Richardson, ?, Bev Watson, Jo Bannatyne-Cugnet, Sue Bland, ?, ?, ?, Merle Harris, Mary Woodbury, Irene Morck, Myrna Guymer
Anne Patton’s hot-off-the-press novel Full Steam to Canada will be launched on May 14 at a Victorian tea in Briercrest, Saskatchewan.
The event is a fundraiser for the Brier Rose Cultural Centre, and will help preserve the smallest farmhouse ever.
This house is notable because it is the very house that the real-life Dorothy Bolton, (Dorothy Boan) the protagonist in Anne’s novel, lived in when she first got married.
Full Steam to Canada is based on memoirs and diaries of people who immigrated to Canada from England as part of the Barr Colony settlement in 1903. A large part of the story comes from an interview that Anne did with Dorothy Boan, who was a young girl when she came to Canada with the Barr Colonists.
Anne will read and autograph copies of her book at the Briercrest Community Centre on Saturday, May 14, 2011, starting at 2 pm. Admission to the Victorian Tea is $15 for adults and $10 for children. Call 306-799-2147 or 306-631-7966 for more information.
Briercrest is about 100 km southwest of Regina. From Regina, follow highway 1 west toward Moose Jaw and take the right exit ramp at highway 301. Turn left toward Weyburn. After 13 km, you will see a sign for Briercrest/Avonlea. Turn right onto highway 339 and drive 19 more km to Briercrest.
Looking for some insight into what’s going on in the world of Young Adult fiction? Award winning writers Arthur Slade and Robin Alison Lohans will discuss their experiences and trends/changes they’ve noticed in YA writing over the years.