The next two weeks should prove interesting (Yes…this is my annual September-is-a-crazy-month post). I will be doing a couple firsts and as daunting as it all seems, I’m really excited to have the opportunity to experience them. Here’s a glimpse into the schedule:

(I will start after the road trip I’ll be taking today that includes 28 hours of driving in a 72 hour period. My brother and I will be going to New Brunswick today for a family funeral and returning to Ontario by Friday.)

Saturday September 17th – Muskoka Novel Marathon Wrap-Party and Panel Discussion – I was asked to be a panelist for a panel discussion on the publication process at the Muskoka Novel Marathon Wrap-party. I’ll be speaking about my road to publication–from writing to querying to signing with an agent and a publisher, etc. The winners of the 2011 Muskoka Novel Marathon will also be announced at the wrap. This year, I feel zero pressure as I flopped out at the marathon. I just did NOT feel in the zone at all while writing this year’s novel. That’s Me in the Corner might just be a shelved work in progress. I keep starting and stopping on the process of completing the first draft, so we’ll see.

Sunday September 18th – Inaugural McLaughlin Literary Festival – I was invited to be a reader at this 1st annual festival. It takes place at the beautiful Parkwood Estates in Oshawa, Ontario. I’ve lived in Oshawa for over 30 years now, and I have yet to step on the grounds of this mansion. I’m excited to do so this Sunday. And I’m very grateful for the invitation to read. There is a full day’s lineup of readers for this event, with a section in the morning’s schedule dedicated to local talent. That’s where I’m slotted to read from my debut young adult novel, Summer on Fire. I think I have about 10 minutes. Still haven’t decided what I’m going to read, but I figure I will do that while my brother does some of the driving on our road trip. I might even read out loud on our trip–a captive audience is a difficult thing to come across. I’m pretty sure he wouldn’t jump out of a moving car. I’m really looking forward to this event, as a reader and as an audience member. There are some great writers lined up. Here’s a look at the day’s schedule.

Saturday September 24th – Summer on Fire Book Launch at Blue Heron Books in Uxbridge! – Yes, it’s almost here. The official launch of the paperback version of my debut young adult novel (10am-Noon). I’m trying not to think about the writing workshops and the WOTS happening on the same day. I will be on hand at Blue Heron, reading and signing copies of Summer on Fire. Really looking forward to this one!

Monday September 26th – Ontario Writers’ Conference Planning Committee Meeting! – We took a bit of the summer off from our volunteer duties as OWC planning committee, so we’re really looking forward to putting our noses to the grindstone now and ironing out some of the details for the 2012 conference! We will be at the table on the 26th and FILLED with excitement for the coming year. I can’t wait to see what we put together this time out. The conference just seems to get bigger and better every year. We are a volunteer group with only one thing in mind when we sit down to do our planning – Create the best conference we can create to give the attendees the best conference we can give them. It is a love of words that brought this committee together, and a love of sharing words with other writers. That’s all. Just passion. We hope to put together another stellar line-up for our 2012 conference…and we hope to see you there!

You can watch video from previous conferences here: OWC Videos

That’s about it for the month of September. I can’t wait to see what October brings. I’m waiting to hear back from my agent on the progress of my young adult novel Half Dead & Fully Broken (Winner of the 2010 Muskoka Novel Marathon Best Young Adult Novel Award). Hopefully she will have some good news for me soon. (-: