Voice Choice Workshop

The last in our spring writing series for 2017 will be VOICE CHOICE, on Tuesday, May 16th from 6-7pm at the Carleton Place Public Library. We welcome writers from past workshops, and anyone who might be interested in finding out how to find your own writing style.

We’ll cover a broad range of ideas revolving around writing style and choices that you make. Even if you haven’t written much before, but are interested in starting, this workshop will help you discover exactly how to get started.

Registration is open now, so please call 257-2702 for more information, or to sign up. It’s going to be an interesting session.


James Patterson has done it again. No, I don’t mean that he’s written another book, although the man just has to sneeze and out comes another best-seller. But this time, it’s all about what he’s giving back, and it’s amazing.

This year, Patterson has promised $1.75 million to school libraries in the United States. Specifically, he wants to give $500 to 3500 teachers. While many school libraries have seen cutbacks (and this isn’t just an issue in the US), teachers often bear the brunt of the problem, having to supplement their meager classroom libraries with current books that will provide reading material for their students. Patterson knows it’s just a drop in the bucket, but that $500 will go a long way, especially in schools where they don’t even have libraries anymore.

This isn’t the first time James Patterson has donated money to schools. He launched the program in 2015 along with the Scholastic Reading Club as a way to bolster reading in schools. So far, he’s donated $3.5 million, and has no plans to stop now.

It’s nice to hear about people giving back to their communities, especially when they have plenty. Good on you, James Patterson! Let’s hope he starts a trend!

Our Forest of Reading® Picks!

Last week, our young readers gathered to vote on their favourite books in Forest of Reading®. They’ve been reading books in their categories since December, and the time finally arrived to choose the winners.

We had students reading in Blue Spruce™, Silver Birch Express™, Silver Birch Fiction™ & Non-Fiction™, and Red Maple. It was an exciting night!

And the winners were:

In the Blue Spruce category for Kindergarten to Grade 2:

THE GOOD LITTLE BOOK by Kyo Maclear, and HARRY AND WALTER by Kathy Stinson.

In the Silver Birch Express category for Grades 3 & 4, it was a tie:

MYLES AND THE MONSTER OUTSIDE by Philippa Dowding, and THE ENCHANTED EGG by Callie George.

In the Silver Birch Fiction category, for Grades 5 & 6: THE NEST by Kenneth Oppel (see photo above).

And in the Silver Birch Non-Fiction category for Grades 5 & 6:


And last but not least, our Red Maple Fiction winner for Grades 7 & 8 was another tie:

MINRS by Kevin Sylvester, and TROUBLE IS A FRIEND OF MINE by Stephanie Tromly.

Congratulations to all of the wonderful Canadian authors and illustrators who were nominated. Now, our votes will be added to those from across Ontario, and the “official” winners will be announced in Toronto in mid-May.

We can’t wait until next year!


Tonight, HULU debuts “The Handmaid’s Tale” in a ten-episode run. Based on the book by Canadian author Margaret Atwood, this series has had a lot of promotion, and promises to be equally creepy and time-appropriate.

The Handmaid’s Tale follows Offred, a young, fertile woman who is forced in her world to conceive against her will. But worse than that, she is terrified to resist. Offred is both afraid and strong, and her bravery trying to escape this role is eye-opening. The trailer looks scary enough…I’m not sure I’ll even make it through the first episode.

If you grew up in Canada, you probably had to read Atwood’s THE HANDMAID’S TALE for English class in high school. While for most of us, it was the first introduction to Atwood’s strange and often confusing worlds, this book probably stuck with many of us. It will be interesting to see how HULU plays out the idea over the course of 10 weeks.

Will you watch?

Women Who Work

It looks like they rewrote the rules for Ivanka’s release. WOMEN WHO WORK : REWRITING THE RULES FOR SUCCESS by Ivanka Trump was set to release in March. But her publishers pushed the date back to May, citing the upheaval in her personal life, moving into a new city, and getting her children settled into new schools. They wanted to make it easier for her to promote the book once she was firmly into her new position in her father’s government.

But now Ivanka has decided that she isn’t going to promote her book after all. She is worried that her position might influence the promotional tour, so she will simply rely on sales of the book through traditional methods.

Will her publishers be happy with this? No doubt they aren’t the least bit worried about how well this book will sell, considering many people will pick it up hoping for some inside tidbits into the election and her famous family. Ivanka had quite a large advance for the book, and will donate the profits to charities of her choice, so any sales over the advance will be gravy for her charities. Let’s hope for their sake it sells leaps and bounds above that.

Will you be interested in this book? Let us know!

What Color is your Parachute?

Richard Bolles, the author of the long running job search manual series, WHAT COLOR IS YOUR PARACHUTE?, died last week at the age of 90. This long-running series has been updated almost yearly, to include changes in the workforce, and to accommodate those who now switch careers.

Bolles originally self-published the first PARACHUTE book as a photocopied pamphlet in 1970 to unemployed Protestant ministers. But it had so much interest, Bolles sold an update in 1972 to an independent publisher who was willing to publish the more wide-ranging version in small batches. Bolles was able to update the series frequently, then, and since that date, it has sold more than 10 million copies and has never gone out of print. Isn’t that amazing?

The witty style, and hard advice has won out readers over the years, and is the go-to Bible of job seekers everywhere. While the advice might not be easy to take (Bolles claims you need to be searching for a job at least 40 hours a week in order to get the best one for you), his fans have sworn by the well-researched books for decades. You can read more about his FASCINATING life in this New York Times article.

Have you used one of the PARACHUTE books to boost your job search? Did it help? Have you recommended it to others? Let us know! While there is no indication that someone else will take over the issues, I’m sure the advice will ring true for years to come. The job search market won’t be the same without this champion of employment, however.