This Year's Presenters
Friday April 22nd, 2022
Odette Barr is co-author and illustrator for Chocolate River Publishing’s children’s adventure series: Follow the Goose Butt, Camelia Airheart! (2016), Take Off to Tantramar (winner, 2017 Alice Kitts Memorial Award for Excellence in Children’s Writing) and Follow the Goose Butt to Nova Scotia (2018). Psst! Camelia’s adventure to Prince Edward Island is now in progress!
Odette’s latest book (for adults), Teaching at the Top of the World (Pottersfield Press, 2020), is a memoir which chronicles her time as a teacher in a remote Inuit community. Odette and her partner live close to nature on the Northumberland shore of New Brunswick.
Guyanese-Canadian author Natasha Deen has published over forty works for kids, teens, and adults. Her novel, In the Key of Nira Ghani, won the 2020 Amy Mathers Teen Book Award and her upcoming novel, The Signs and Wonders of Tuna Rashad, is a JLG Gold Standard Selection. She’s also the person behind the Lark and Connor Ba mystery series.
When she’s not writing, Natasha teaches with the University of Toronto SCS and spends A LOT of time trying to convince her pets that she’s the boss of the house.
Visit Natasha at www.natashadeen.com and on Twitter/Instagram, @natasha_deen.
James Leck has worked as a high school teacher in Canada, Japan, and Kuwait.
The Adventures of Jack Lime, and The Further Adventures of Jack Lime (Kids Can Press) are the first two books in a series of mysteries that will follow his teenage private eye, Jack Lime, as he solves mysteries in the fictional town of Iona. After Dark, his latest book, follows Charlie Harker as he arrives in the sleepy town of Rolling Hills just as his neighbours start turning into zombies… er, vampires… well, something strange.
Currently, James lives in Dartmouth with his wife and two children.
Angela Misri is an award-winning journalist, author, and educator. Her detective series, called The Portia Adams Adventures, is set at Baker Street in the 1930s, and her first middle-grade series is called Tales from the Apocalypse. Pickles vs the Zombies, the first in that middle-grade series, won the 2021 Hackmatack for fiction.
Misri has an MA in journalism from the University of Western Ontario and has worked as a digital journalist for almost 20 years, first at the CBC and now at The Walrus. She also teaches in the journalism department at Ryerson University in Toronto.
Steve Vernon is a Canadian oral tradition storyteller and a writer of ghost stories and folklore.
His work is available from Nimbus Publishing including Where the Ghosts Are: A Guide to Nova Scotia's Spookiest Places, Maritime Monsters: A Field Guide as well as Sinking Deeper: Or, My Questionable (Possibly Heroic) Decision to Invent a Sea Monster.
Richard Scrimger has written 20+ books for children and adults, has won a few awards, and been translated into a dozen languages. He has led writing workshops on five continents.
Recent novels feature a hero who is obnoxious but strangely irresistible, another who realizes that Dad might be wrong about people who look different, and yet another who see visions. Plots involve a tattoo, an element that produces super powers, and a painting that comes to life.
As you can guess, Richard does not always know what is going on. Confusion is his natural state.
Wade White hails from Nova Scotia, Canada, land of wild blueberries and Duck Tolling Retrievers. He teaches part-time, dabbles in animation, and spends the rest of his time as a stay-at-home dad. It is also possible he has set a new record as the slowest 10K runner. Ever. He owns one pretend cat and one real one, and they get along fabulously.
In his Adventurer's Guide series, fantasy and science fiction meet, dragons aren’t as innocent as they look (which is to say, not innocent at all), and nothing is quite what it seems. This series includes Successful Escapes, Dragons (and Why they Keep Biting Me), and most recently Treasure (and How to Steal It).
Here are a few past & present Funny Pages authors!
Saturday April 23rd, 2022
11:30 am to 12:15 pm
Kate Beaton was born and raised in Nova Scotia, Canada. After graduating with a degree in history and anthropology, she moved around to Alberta, Victoria, New York and Toronto. In 2007, Beaton began creating webcomics under the name Hark! A Vagrant!, quickly drawing a substantial following around the world.
The collections of her landmark strip Hark! A Vagrant and Step Aside Pops each spent several months on the New York Times graphic novel bestseller list, as well as appearing on best of the year lists from Time, The Washington Post, Vulture, NPR Books, and winning the Eisner, Ignatz, Harvey, and Doug Wright Awards. She has also published the acclaimed picture books King Baby and The Princess and the Pony, with an adaptation of the latter debuting as the children’s program Pinecone and Pony on Apple TV+ in April 2022, with Kate as Executive Producer.
10:30 am to 11:15 am
Sheree Fitch has been a groundbreaking force in the literary arts and literacy community throughout Canada and beyond since 1987. Sheree is widely recognized as an innovative master writer, literary artist and inspirational speaker whose body of work explores the human condition. Her lyrical style gives her a unique literary voice in her writing both for adults and children.
Creating from “the land of the imagination in the country that is childhood,” Sheree’s singularity and voice, visions and award-winning books and storytelling have left their mark on two generations of children and families and influenced a whole generation of writers from Ecum Secum to the Himalayas in Bhutan and many places in between.
Writer. Dad. Folk hero. Author of Wereduck (2014) and Cure for Wereduck (2016), and The Wereduck Code (2019) from Nimbus Publishing. Dave Atkinson is a dad, writer, broadcaster, and pigeon fancier living in Charlottetown.
He is the author of the two other books in the Wereduck series: Wereduck and Cure for Wereduck, both nominated for a Hackmatack Children’s Choice Award. He also loves playing chess but is dreadful at it.
Helaine Becker is an award-winning writer of books for children, including the best-selling picture books, A Porcupine in a Pine Tree, Deck the Halls, and Dashing Through the Snow. She also writes for children's magazines and for kids television. Helaine was selected to tour four times for Canadian Children’s Book Week (Yukon in 2006, Nunavut in 2008, and Manitoba in 2014 and Montreal in 2019).
She has presented at Vancouver Writers Fest, Tucson Festival of Book, IFOA, the Orange County (California) Children's Festival, the Festival of Women Writers, Frye Fest, Weaving Words, and other major venues. She has also been the keynote speaker at SCBWI Canada East's regional conference in 2016. She presents to kids AND to writers, teaching writing skills re: fiction, non-fiction, verse and the business side of writing.
Marty Chan writes books for kids, plays for adults, and tweets for himself. Despite his mother’s protests, he pursued writing, which has made for awkward family dinner conversations at Christmas and Thanksgiving. His second novel, The Mystery of the Graffiti Ghoul, won the 2007 Diamond Willow Award and was nominated for the Arthur Ellis Award.
His latest novel, Kung Fu Master, was inspired by his love of an old Jackie Chan movie and his fellow classmates’ mistaken belief that Marty was a martial arts expert. He wows kid audiences with a combination of stage magic, improv, and embarrassing anecdotes about his childhood.
Vicki Grant has been called “a superb storyteller” (The Canadian Children’s Book Centre) and “one of the funniest writers working today” (The Vancouver Sun). She began her career as an advertising copywriter, moved on to writing scripts for Theodore Tugboat, Big Comfy Couch and her own Gemini-winning series Scoop & Doozie before graduating to YA fiction.
Her novels have won The Red Maple, The Arthur Ellis Award and CBC’s Young Canada Reads as well as been shortlisted for The Edgar, CLA Children’s Book of the Year and numerous Forest of Reading awards. Her latest novel, 36 Questions That Changed My Mind About You, has been translated into 17 languages and recently optioned for film.
Basil Sylvester is a student, bookseller, and author. They love vampires, ghosts, and werewolves, and their favourite monster movie is The Bride of Frankenstein. When not writing, reading, or on a long walk, Basil likes to have dance parties in their room to Carly Rae Jepsen. They live in Toronto.
Kevin Sylvester will make you laugh - and by doing so, will trick you into learning stuff! Kevin has written and/or illustrated more than thirty books, including The Almost Epic Squad #1: Mucus Mayhem, the Neil Flambé Capers (now at six books), and the MINRs trilogy. His sci-fi series MINRs is already a bestseller and critical success. MINRS was a Red Maple and MYRCA Honour Book in 2017.
MINRS3 – the final book in the series – will be out in 2018. He has a thing for monsters. Gargantua Jr: Defender of Earth is about a mom and her baby Kaiju. Super-Duper Monster Viewer is a picture book that helps you SEE the monsters in front of you. Splinters was released in 2010. He also illustrated GREAT (with Glen Gretzky and Lauri Holomis). Kevin’s non-fiction titles include Follow Your Money, Follow Your Stuff, Basketballogy, Baseballogy, Sports Hall of Weird and Gold Medal for Weird.