Lois Donovan

Lois Donovan

Author
Calgary, AB
Awards

Golden Eagle Award (Runner-up, 2010)

Hackmatack Readers Choice Award Atlantic Canada (Short-listed, 2009)

Genre

Intermediate Fiction (Ages 10-14)

Biography

Lois was born in Montreal, Quebec, after which she managed to spread her childhood across Quebec, Ontario, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia prior to her move west. Following her graduation from the University of Alberta in Edmonton, Lois taught in the historic Eastwood School in Edmonton prior to moving to Calgary. Lois pursued a Fine Arts diploma in music at the University of Calgary and spent the next three decades enjoying a wonderful teaching career in Calgary. All of these richly Canadian experiences sparked a passion for bringing Canada's stories alive for young readers.

In addition to reading, writing, blogging, and drinking lattés, Lois loves visiting schools, conducting workshops and presenting at conferences. 

Presentations
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Behind the Scenes with the Author

 

This interactive, multi-media presentation begins with a peak into what it takes to be an author with a few personal anecdotes from Lois’  journey including the challenges of writing historical fiction. Then, with a short reading from The Journal, Lois will lead the students back in time to the Alberta of 1929. Starting with a New Year’s Eve celebration, the students will hear jazzy 1920’s music and get to practice dance moves popular at the time, then countdown to the new year of 1929 with some old-fashioned noisemakers.  In addition to meeting some Alberta heroes , students will get a sneak-peak behind the scenes of the writing process. Students will be challenged/inspired to write their own stories based on some juicy tidbits from Lois’ research. Time for questions from students and staff.

 

Presentation type: Other

Recommended levels: Junior (4-6)

Fees: $150.00/session $250.00/half day

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Recommended levels: Not applicable

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How to Breathe Life into Your Characters

 

 

Why do some characters seem as flat as the paper they are written on, while others spring to life, marching ahead, almost writing the story for you? Fully realized characters are critical to the success of the novel.  In this workshop, Lois reveals the fundamentals of what makes a compelling character, and introduces creative ways to “get inside the head” of your character.   ( Grades 7 - 12)\

 

 

Presentation type: Workshop

Recommended levels: High school (9-12)

Fees: $150.00

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Journey Through Genres

 

 

 

Explore various genres and contemplate how a particular historic event changes in the telling, depending on the choice of genre. After discussing the effect the choice of genre has on content, participants will have the opportunity to experiment with telling the same tale through different genres.

Presentation type: Workshop

Recommended levels: Junior (4-6), Intermediate (7-8), High school (9-12)

Fees: $150.00

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Winds of L'Acadie - The Story Behind the Story

 

This multi-media adventure brings the land of L'Acadie alive as students travel back in time, with the help of a magical Mi’kmaq quill box, to the Nova Scotia of 1755 just as the deportation machine is heating up. From the dykes to the deportation and beyond, it is a touching story of courage and survival. While sharing the story-behind-the-story of Winds of L’Acadie, Lois weaves in her own journey and struggles through the writing process from blank page to publication.

The Acadian presentation can be tailored to fit from Grade 1 – adult.  There are spoons to play with Acadian music for the younger students and more detail of the events leading up to the deportation etc. for high school students. It is an excellent fit for discussions of identity and nationalism in high school social studies. 

 

 

 

Presentation type: Other

Recommended levels: Not applicable

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THE MAKING OF A HERO

Beginning with the student’s idea of a what makes a hero, this multi-media presentation will explore real life heroes and fictitious heroes. Lois will read excerpts from The Journal as students join Lois on her journey through the writing of The Journal, including the controversy surrounding the Famous Five. Themes of family, racism, heroes, making a difference, lead into how the students might weave their own stories into writing fiction. An effective cross-curricular connection between Language Arts and Social Studies. Q &A time at the end.

Recommended levels: Junior (4-6), Intermediate (7-8)

Fees: $150.00