Sunday, April 29, 2007

BC Book Prizes Gala Dinner

Well that was exciting! It's not every night that one is invited over to the Queen's place for dinner! Government House is the perfect venue for the BC Book Prize Gala dinner - and the Queen's representative in British Columbia (the Honorable Iona Campanolo, PM, CM, OBC) a gracious host for the evening's festivities. Many members of the BC literati were present and the room was electric with anticipation (and hunger pangs) as the awards were presented by the likes of Ted Harrison, Pamela Porter, and Carla Funk. William Deverell was a fine Master of Ceremonies and Patrick Lane a worthy recipient of the Lietenant Governor's Award for Literary Excellence.

It was positively nerve-wracking to be sitting at the Sono Nis table while the nominees were read out for the Bill Duthie Booksellers' Choice Award. Yetsa's Sweater was nominated (Yetsa, Joan Larson, and Sylvia Olsen were all on hand...) but alas, had the misfortune of being pitted against David Suzuki's autobiography (the winner). Katherine Gordon's Made to Measure was nominated for the Roderick Haig-Brown Regional Prize. I have never seen a smile so huge as the one that lit up Katherine's face when her name was read out as the winner! What a thrill to be part of it all!

While it is unusual to be wined and dined in a hall with light fixtures like this one,

the strangest moment must have been when we all had to stand and raise our glasses to the Queen herself. Reminded me of my days in elementary school when we all had to sing God Save the Queen on a regular basis.

Congratulations to all the nominees and winners! (here's a link to the complete list)

Friday, April 27, 2007

Meet My Daemon!

If you loved Pullman's The Golden Compass as much as I did, you probably wondered what your deamon might be like... Could I resist visiting this website to find out what mine might look like? Nope! After answering a few questions, I met my daemon, a lovely red fox called Arkadion. Now, wherever I go, I'll imagine him trotting along in the tall grasses at the side of the road, just out of sight but never far away. I just hope he doesn't startle the horses or I'll find myself launched into orbit again. My lovely mare, Bonny took exception to my request to pop over some crosspoles the other day and kicked her heels skyward upon landing on the far side of the jump. I didn't have a chance! After soaring through the air, I landed (miraculously unhurt!) in the soft footing and watched her leap and buck across the ring, stirrups flying, head tossing. She cantered over to her good friend, Belle (a dapple grey mare and her neighbour when she stays up at Bodicea), nuzzled her buddy's neck, heaved a huge sigh, and was reasonably perfect after that. A good thing too. I am reaching that certain age where I can't be expected to bounce and roll the way I once did in my rubbery youth. Ah, horses. Gotta' love 'em!

This is what we should have looked like...

Monday, April 23, 2007

Behind the Scenes...

... with Diane Morriss of Sono Nis Press. Click on the title above to listen to a really interesting interview with publisher Diane Morriss. It's quite enlightening to hear her take on everything from backlist titles to dealing with the chain bookstores...

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Caution! Sharp Knife Ahead!

Note to self: when testing the new (very sharp) cheese knife, keep your mousing fingertip well away from the (very sharp) tip of the blade. Failure to do so will result in throbbing discomfort with each mouse click, double click, or depression of the J, H, U, I, M or N keys on the keyboard... oh, apparently that list should also include the letter Y. DOH! The cheese (some German Gorgonzola variety) was tasty, though!

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Now That's a Book Launch!

How often does an author see a lineup like this...

leading to a venue like Government House in Victoria, BC? Hundreds of people came to get a rare peek inside Government House today during a 50th anniversary celebration (in 1957 Government House burnt down and was subsequently rebuilt). What a brilliant day to launch the book, Government House by Rosemary Neering (with photographs by Tony Owen).

Congratulations to all involved with the production of this lovely book!