I was born in Hamilton Ontario in April 1980. At the age of three I lost my hearing and after seeing several doctors went in for surgery. I regained my hearing but developed a disability called Central Auditory Processing Disorder or CAPD. I struggled with speech, writing, and reading, and school was very difficult, so much so that I didn't learn how to read until I was ten years old.

Boo the CatThanks to very loving and supportive parents and a lot of hard work on my part, and from a support group of tutors and teachers, I managed to graduate from high school. Even though I had several people in the school system tell me that I wouldn't graduate, and would never get into college, I did! I went to Algonquin College in Ottawa Ontario where I received my diploma in Performing Arts.

Tilly the DogA few years after college I moved to the United Kingdom to live and work for three years at a school for adults with learning disabilities. From there, I moved back to my hometown of Bridgewater, Nova Scotia.

Ellie Goes to the Zoo” is my first book. The main character Ellie is based on a stuffed elephant, my favourite childhood toy given to me by my Aunt and Uncle when I was five. I still have Ellie today, and she continues to inspire me. I am currently working on a second book about Ellie and her adventures so stay tuned to my website to find out how she is doing.

 

 

 

Illustrated by Nathalie KennedyNathalie Kennedy

I would like to thank my illustrator, Nathalie. You can visit her website here.

It was a real treat to work on this book. 

A story for children and a chance to share (with Heather) something fun. Ellie Goes to the Zoo is a great story, and was a real treat to work on. Each image was hand drawn and coloured with photoshop. It took several different versions of Ellie to come up with the right one. I combined every good characteristic of each version and molded them into the lovable character we see now. Every page had its own challenges. It took several days to draw and a few more to colour, depending on the detail.