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wrcovwhiteborder.jpgI just received word yesterday that my new graphic novel, Wild Ride, is nominated for the 2008/09 Hackmatack Children’s Choice Book Award!

This is a great surprise and very great honour for many reasons. Not least of which is that Hackmatack winners are chosen by the kids themselves (like the Silver Birch Award here in Ontario.) There is something truly special about knowing that the folks picking the winning book are the very ones for whom the book was written. I started writing for kids not only to tell good stories but also to foster a love of reading in young people. Competitions like the Hackmatack have the same goals in mind and it’s an honour to have my work be a key part to such a great literacy effort.

Another reason that I’m thrilled to be nominated is because, as far as I know, it’s the first time a graphic novel has been included among the nominees for a Canadian children’s book award (I’ve done absolutely no research on this, so could be totally wrong.) I thank the Hackmatack nomination council for being so open-minded to see the potential for graphic novels to engage readers on the same level as traditional books.

And of course, there’d be no Wild Ride if it wasn’t for the fantastic work of Mike Deas, whose illustrations give the whole Graphic Guide Adventures series that totally kickin’ look and feel that kids are obviously loving. Thank you Mike and I hope you’re enjoying the nomination as much as I am.

Also, big congrats to fellow Orca authors, Hazel Hutchens and the amazing Anita Daher, whose books for the Hackmatack Award too. I am definitely in good company.

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