Monthly Archives: March 2012

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A wonderful tour on the vaudeville circuit

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The Little ShadowsThe Little Shadows by Marina Endicott

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The wonderful world of vaudeville has always fascinated me, and I’m only sad that Marina Endicott’s book did such a fantastic job of taking me into that world that I felt bereft when the book ended. My good friend YA author Karen Krossing (The Yo-yo Prophet) has taught me a lot about writing from an organizing principle, and I thoroughly appreciated Endicott’s mining of the vaudeville conventions in the way she presents the stories of the three Avery girls and their mother in a four-act structure with placards introducing the scenes. The motivations of the family for entering vaudeville were clearly depicted, and my interest never waned in following their journey together and their individual journeys in that hectic, chaotic life. I found the author’s notes almost as absorbing as the story itself, and the depth and excellence of Endicott’s research shows in every detail. This would make a marvellous book club pick, and is a worthy successor to Good to a Fault.

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Eden Mills Writers’ Festival

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I love sequels, especially ones with happy endings.

In 2006, I submitted a YA short story to the Eden Mills Writers’ Festival and was thrilled to be selected as one of the Fringe Readers for that year’s Festival. This was deeply encouraging to an as-yet-unpublished author! We Fringe Readers were included in the main events over the Festival weekend, and we were encouraged to get back in touch with the Festival when we became published authors.

With my novel scheduled for release this April, I did get back in touch with the Festival earlier this year. The happy ending to this story is that the organizers have invited me to read from Yesterday’s Dead on Sunday September 16 as part of the Young Adult area of the 2012 Eden Mills Writers’ Festival.

I’m very much looking forward to experiencing the Festival from a new viewpoint this year, and you can bet I’ll be encouraging the Fringe Readers to follow-up! For more information on the Festival, visit http://www.edenmillswritersfestival.ca/.