I’m an award-winning author and educator. I have created about 40 graphic novels and books specifically for reluctant readers, including: Max Finder Mystery, Graphic Guide Adventures, Geeked Out Mysteries, Tank & Fizz, Battle of the Blocks. and West Meadows Detectives.
I’m also an educator who has taught in Kindergarten to Grade 8 classrooms with the Toronto District School Board. In nearly a decade of teaching, I’ve focused on getting children reading through alternative literacies, like graphic novels and video games.
In 2015, I took some time off from the classroom to pursue a Masters of Early Childhood Studies at Ryerson University, which I officially received in September 2016. My MA research looked into young children’s open-ended play in Minecraft. It’s been a lot of fun and I’m hopeful some of my writing will be publicly available very soon.
I write about that stuff on my blog, Feeding Change and at GamingEdus.org , a project I helped start, with the support of the RE/Lab at Ryerson University, to introduce teachers to Game Based Learning, through Minecraft.
If you’re looking for ways to engage reluctant readers with writing and reading, please consider joining my Readers Group. You’ll get a free ebook and regular emails from me with ideas to get kids reading, updates on my projects and chances to win free stuff.
Want my life story? Okay, click here for the long version
Really? You want to know my life story? Okay, but I’ll have to tell it to you in third person (that’s how these things are done, apparently.)
Sit back, here we go . . .
Liam was born in Northern Ireland and came to Canada when he was five years old. He studied media at Ryerson University and has worked on film sets in Canada, Ireland and the United Kingdom.
He left the movie industry in 1999 when his first book, System Shock, was published by A & C Black in London, UK and has been writing ever since.
He has also developed educational radio plays for the BBC, written articles for adults and children for numerous national magazines, adapted TV scripts for Kids Can Press, and created original comics for A&C Black Publishers, Owl Magazine, Scholastic Canada, Stone Arch Books and Capstone Press.
In addition to writing for young readers, Liam is an elementary school teacher, currently teaching Grade 1 in Toronto.
He is also an External Collaborator at Ryerson University’s EDGE Lab where he is exploring the use of online video games as digital learning spaces for children. He is a founding member of GamingEdus, a group of educators using video games, like Minecraft, to engage learners. Currently, Liam’s students are blowing up stuff on the Multi-School Minecraft Server, a single virtual world shared by four inner-city schools and created with his GamingEdu pals. He writes about his use of technology in education on his blog Feeding Change.
Before all that though, Liam delivered hot food in restaurants, cold tea on movie sets, slimy fish in Dublin, bottled water in Vancouver, and bad jokes in theme parks as a professional juggler.
Liam lives in Toronto, Ontario where he divides his time between his computer and the coffee maker.