Spent a few wonderful days at the Ottawa International Writer’s Festival and I have to thank Artistic Director Sean Wilson, Founding Director Neil Wilson, Program Coordinator Kira Harris and everyone on the festival staff for making my time in Ottawa an absolute delight, both personally and professionally. One of the highlights of the trip was meeting Mike Carey—author of Vertigo’s The Unwritten, as well as the Felix Castor novels—and his wife Lin (who, under the pseudonym A.J. Lake, has written a fantasy adventure series for young readers called The Darkest Age). Mike and I did a Masterclass on comics and graphic novels that lasted about an hour but could have gone on for several more. (The picture below was taken by photographer Jowan Gauthier during the class. I love that backdrop.) I also had the pleasure of doing talks—and Imaginalis readings—at two local schools: When you’re a writer of kids’ fantasy fiction, you just can’t beat the wide-eyed enthusiasm of a couple of hundred nine and ten year olds.
As a guy who, perhaps, spends too much time alone in a room playing with his imaginary friends, it was a real treat to get out into the world and interact with the folks who read my work—as well as fellow authors and literary enthusiasts. The Ottawa festival goes on twice a year, every year, and if you’re a lover of books—as I suspect most of you reading this are—I urge you to attend.