Life, the Universe and Everything


Mr. Clarke from Stranger Things

Mad Scientists of Stranger Things: Part IV – Mr. Clarke

Did you miss the previous instalments in this series? Check the archives for posts on Martin Brenner, Sam Owens, and Dr. Alexei. Today, we're talking about my favourite character, never mind scientist, in all of Stranger Things: Mr. Clarke. Read More  

notebook and pens

Teach Write: An Introduction to Purpose

As part of our preparation for writing a new piece, we need to think about audience - who we are writing for and how the knowledge and needs of that audience affect the way we approach our work. Figuring ... Read More  

Counting on Katherine, by Helaine Becker

STEMinism Sunday: Women in Space

In honour of the recent, first-ever, all-female spacewalk, I thought I'd share three recent, amazing Canadian kids' books united by the theme of women in space. Read More  

shoreline by Jean Mills

Cantastic Authorpalooza: Jean Mills

Warning, readers: I’m not a science writer. But like any scientist, I do incorporate research findings (of a sort) into my stories. Here’s one example that’s especially true of my most recent YA novel, Larkin on the Shore. When stories ... Read More  

Dr. Alexei from Stranger Things

Mad Scientists of Stranger Things: Part III – Alexei

This is Part III in my series on the scientists of Stranger Things. Check the blog archive for thoughts on Martin Brenner and Sam Owens. Today, we take a look at everyone's favourite Russian scientist, Alexei! Read More  

notebook and pens

Teach Write: Age Groups and Audience in Children’s Literature

This will be our final column on audience (at least for now). So buckle up for a crash course on age levels in children's literature! First, a caveat: the categories I'm presenting here are not absolute. Different people use different ... Read More  

Tahrana Lovlin

STEMinism Sunday: Tahrana Lovlin, Snow Specialist

Today, my guest is Tahrana Lovlin, brilliant woman and accomplished engineer... with an unusual specialty. Take it away, Tahrana! So I’m writing this because Lindsey asked me to and I’ve known her for almost 30 years (wow, crazy). And I’m ... Read More  

cover of How Emily Saved the Bridge, by Frieda Wishinsky

Cantastic Authorpalooza: Frieda Wishinsky

A poet and illustrator once said to me, “Why don’t you stick to one kind of writing? You’re all over the place. You should write one kind of book and brand yourself.” It’s true. I write in many genres— picture ... Read More  

Dr. Sam Owens from Stranger Things

Mad Scientists of Stranger Things: Part II – Sam Owens

And we're back for another look at the scientists of Stranger Things. Today, Dr. Sam Owens, successor of the horrible Martin Brenner, new head of Hawkins Lab. Read More  

notebook and pens

Teach Write: The Dual Audiences of Children’s Literature

Last time, we discussed the special, double audience that we have to consider when writing a class assignment for a teacher. Hopefully that advice will help all the students that have now gone back to school! The audience* for ... Read More  

Dr. Linda Campbell in the field

STEMinism Sunday: Dr. Linda Campbell

Today, we're talking to Dr. Linda Campbell of Saint Mary's University. I worked with Campbell at SMU, and she's passionate about both her science and science communication, so she's a perfect fit for this blog! Read More  

Ghost's Journey by Robin Stevenson

Cantastic Authorpalooza: Robin Stevenson

Back in 2015, I became involved in refugee sponsorship when I joined a group sponsoring a Syrian family with four small kids. It was a great experience. In fact, this first sponsorship led me to start three more sponsorship ... Read More  

Martin Brenner from Stranger Things

Mad Scientists of Stranger Things: Part I – Martin Brenner

Time to get a little... strange... over here, with a series of posts about the scientists* of Stranger Things. We're going to start with Martin Brenner, the true Big Bad of Season One, and a textbook example of one ... Read More  

notebook and pens

Teach Write: When Your Teacher is Your Audience

Listen up, students, because this edition of Teach Write is all for you: today, we continue our exploration of audience with a critical one: teachers. When teachers give us writing assignments, they are trying to measure two things: Read More  

Madeline Kahn: flames on the side of my face

STEMinism Sunday: Stigmatization of “Women’s Work” in Netflix’s Point Blank

Today we're branching out - rather than talking about a specific woman in science, we're going to talk about the perception of women - and men - in medicine. Specifically, the perception of nurses. Read More  

Triceratops Stomp by Karen Patkau

Cantastic Authorpalooza: Karen Patkau

A plaster cast of an embryo fossil and three eggs circulated around the room. Dr. David Evans, a paleontologist at the Royal Ontario Museum, described his remarkable find: a dinosaur nursery where he found dinosaur eggs! Read More  

Egon Spengler

Mad Science Mondays: Egon Spengler Edition

Ghostbusters (1984) is one of the first movies I remember seeing in the theatre as a kid. I'm pretty sure it was the VERY first movie my little brother saw in the theatre: he was young enough that he ... Read More  

notebook and pens

Teach Write: Identifying Your Audience

Last time we talked about why it's important for writers to think about audience - the readers we are writing for. Today, let's dig a little deeper into types of readers, and identify some questions we can use to ... Read More