2016 Book Camp authors

2017 Book Camp Authors

Keynote Address by Dr. Jenny Kay Dupuis

Dr. Jenny Kay Dupuis is of Anishinaabe/Ojibway ancestry and a proud member of Nipissing First Nation. She is an educator, researcher, artist, and conference speaker who works full-time supporting the advancement of Indigenous education. Jenny's interest in her family's past and her commitment to teaching about truth and Indigenous realities through literature drew her to co-write 'I Am Not a Number', her first children's book about her grandmother's experience at a residential school. Jenny was recently awarded the J.S. Woodsworth Award for Human RIghts and Equity (Individual Leadership). She lives in Toronto.

Workshop description: 
How to Write the Truth, Reconcile Our Past, and Honour Community Voices
This session will focus on Jenny Kay Dupuis' experience writing her book, I Am Not a Number. Jenny will share her reflections on the journey of working with family/community to tell the story of her granny's experience at a residential school. Attend this session to explore writing strategies to share the truth, reconcile our past, and honour community voices


Kira Vermond

Kira Vermond received her first (friendly) rejection letter from a kids' magazine when she was 11, but that didn't stop her from wanting to be a writer. Today, she's a busy author and journalist for adults, teens and kids with over 1,500 articles and five books published, including the 2015 Norma Fleck Award for Canadian Children's Non-Fiction winning Why We Live Where We Live, Silver Birch nominated Half-Truths and Brazen Lies: An Honest Look at Lying, and Red Maple nominated The Secret Life of Money: A kid's guide to cash and Growing Up, Inside and Out.
She has also written a money book for adults. When she's not writing, she's whistling while she works, singing with the windows wide open and cooking tasty stuff. Oh. And drinking coffee. She likes to do that too. Kira lives in Guelph, Ontario with her husband, a couple of fabulous kids and a big dog named Marbles, who is hypoallergenic and hyper-energetic.

Workshop Description: Half-Truths and Brazen Lies
We're all liars! (And that's normal) You were probably taught that honesty is the best policy. So why do your parents ask you to pretend you like all your birthday gifts, even Aunt Dora's knitted dinosaur sweater? Does ‚"being polite‚" mean lying? And aren't card players encouraged to bluff when they play poker? Talk about mixed messages! This fun and thoughtful presentation will guide campers through the ethically complex maze we call deception and will explore how lies actually touch every aspect of our lives. We'll cover food fraud, bogus advertising, the placebo effect, online trickery and cheating at school (plus how to stop). Finally, we'll prove there's a *100% accurate lie detection method that can spot liars big and small. From spaghetti farmers in Switzerland, to rattlesnakes in ball pits (eek!) and compulsive liars who just can't stop, this interactive and fascinating session based on Kira's book, Half-truths and Brazen Lies: An Honest Look at Lying, will give campers something to think about long after it's over. (Honest!) *About 50% of the time.


Scott Chantler


Scott Chantler was born in Deep River, Ontario, Canada and still hates the cold. He grew up in St. Thomas. At 19, he moved to Waterloo, Ontario, to attend the University of Waterloo, where he majored in Fine Arts/Film Studies. He later studied Computer Animation at Sheridan College in Oakville, Ontario.
Later, around 2000 Scott found himself fulfilling his childhood ambition of working in the comics industry, first as a pioneer in the webcomics scene, then with the publication of his first graphic novel, Days Like This with writer J. Torres. Days Like This would be nominated by the American Library Association as one of its “Best Books for Teens” in 2004. After a second book (Scandalous) with Torres, which garnered him a Russ Manning Award nomination, Chantler began pitching his own material, with immediate success. His first solo work, Northwest Passage, was nominated for an Eisner Award, as well as two Harvey Awards, three Joe Shuster Awards, and a Doug Wright Award.
More recently, Kids Can Press released his all-ages fantasy adventure series Three Thieves (the first book of which, Tower of Treasure, won the Joe Shuster Award for Best Comic for Kids in 2011) and Canadian literary institution McClelland & Stewart publishing his graphic memoir Two Generals, which was based on his grandfather’s experiences in the Second World War. It was nominated for two Eisner Awards, two Joe Shuster Awards, the Ontario Library Association’s White Pine Award for Non-Fiction, named as one of Chapters-Indigo’s Best Books of 2010, excerpted in Best American Comics 2012 (edited by Francoise Mouly) and listed by readers in CBC Canada Reads: True Stories as one of the top 40 Canadian non-fiction books of all time. Scott still lives in Waterloo, with his wife, two young sons, and a yappy dog.

Workshop Description: Making Comics with Scott Chantler
The cartoonist behind the acclaimed Three Thieves  series takes you behind the scenes of how to tell stories using pictures. Whether you’re the best artist in your class or just get by with stick figures, you’ll learn how to think (and read!) visually.



Teresa Toten


Teresa Toten is the award-winning author of Beware That Girl.  She won the Governor General's Literary Award and an American Library Association award for The Unlikely Hero of Room 13b. She is the author of the acclaimed Blondes series, as well as The Game, The Onlyhouse and with Eric Walters, The Taming. But mainly she wanted to be a mermaid when she grew up. Visit her online at terestoten.com and on Facebook, and follow @TTotenAUthor on Twitter, and @teresatoten on Instagram.

Workshop description:  Who Are these People?
It's an intense and interactive master class on character development using Hot Writing Techniques


Megan Crewe

Megan Crewe.jpg

Megan Crewe is the author of several highly acclaimed books for young adults. Her first novel, Give Up the Ghost, was shortlisted for the Sunburst Award. The Way We Fall, the first instalment in Crewe's Fallen World trilogy, was nominated for the OLA White Pine Award in 2013, and Earth & Sky, the first book in her Earth & Sky trilogy, was an OLA Best Bet for 2015. She is also the author of the standalone novels A Mortal Song and Beast. When not writing, she loves planning overseas expeditions and spending time with her family in Toronto.

Workshop description: The Strange and Wonderful Writing Life
Megan will discuss how she got started as a writer through her childhood and teen years, the importance of practice and perseverance, and the writing process all the way from initial idea to publication, with numerous examples from her books. Questions and participant discussion are encouraged.


Joanne Levy

Joanne author photo.jpg

Joanne Levy is the author of Small Medium at Large and Crushing It.  Small Medium at Large was nominated for The Forest of Reading's Red Maple Award in 2014 and was an honour book for the 2014 Manitoba Young Readers Choice Award. She can usually be found at her computer, channeling her younger self into books. Joanne lives in Hamilton with her husband and kids of the furred and feathered variety.

Workshop description: Joanne uses humour and examples from her own life to illustrate the sometimes rocky road to following your dreams. Joanne will talk about her long, bumpy road to publication and what it takes to make a book, from birth of concept, to editing and production, and how a final cover is made, using examples from her own career. Presentations always include ample time for Q&A so make sure you come armed with plenty of questions!  

Jennifer Mook-Sang

Jennifer Mook-Sang grew up in Guyana and moved to Canada when she was fourteen. While reading bedtime stories to her two sons, she fell in love with picture books and decided to write one of her own. A small story started in writing class grew into the humorous middle-grade novel Speechless, published by Scholastic in 2015. Speechless was shortlisted for many awards, and recommended by the Ontario Library Association, the Canadian Childrens' Book Centre, the CBC, and the TD Summer Reading Club. In October, her picture book Captain Monty Takes the Plunge will be released by Kids Can Press. Jennifer lives in Burlington, Ontario. You can find out more about her at jennifermooksang.com.

Workshop description:
Discussion::What is character development? What are the important things to know about your character? • Desires • Fears • Flaws • Secrets
Activity: Build a character. Write a story
Discussion: Discuss how your writing activity felt. Consider where next your story will go. Ask the question "What if?"
Read: If there's time and interest, students may read their work to the others.