- Agent update
- MFA highlights
- TD Grade One Book Giveaway
- OLA Nomination
- Cooking with Nadia L. Hohn
- interviews by nadia
- Spring/Summer/Fall 2021 Recap
- Upcoming books
Letter from the editor
We did it. Eighteen months in lockdown and the world has begun to open up. I have had quite possibly the busiest time of my life. Which explains why I took an eight months hiatus from writing this newsletter. The delay wasn’t intentional but the result of a busy year.
In 2021 so far, I taught four Writing for Children courses online at institutions— Centennial College, University of Guelph Open Learning, and the University of Toronto School for Continuing Studies. I was an Instructor at the Youth Writing Boot Camp at Vancouver Public Library over the summer. I signed three book deals and found an agent. I also completed the first year of my MFA in Creative Writing program at the University of Guelph and began another one in September. I have taken part in interviews, edited videos, written articles for magazines, conducted research, presented, and hosted a monthly online reading event. An OAC arts grant allowed me to purchase a desktop computer and hire a social media manager/strategist for eight weeks this summer. Malaika’s Costume was a part of the 2021 TD Summer Reading Club. You will also see in my upcoming books that I have a few projects on the go. I also received a TAC grant to work on my middle grade novel. This fall, I began my role Presenter and Judge for Innisfil IDEALab Short Story Contest for Kids.
Making a life as a full time writer means taking on many roles and also learning to say no when necessary. But I am living my dream. I love the work I get to do and wouldn’t change that for anything.
Nadia L. Hohn
I finally have a literary agent for the first time in my #writerlylife. I am happy to say my three and a half year search for representation has landed with Hilary McMahon, senior agent and executive vice-president of Westwood Creative Artists. Hilary is highly recommended and has a 20+ year track record as a literary agent. After 5 years as a published author who has secured 10 book contracts on my own, my priority is about delegating more, especially during these eventful last several years in my personal life. I think the timing for an agent couldn’t be more perfect and I look forward to this partnership with Hilary. I wish to thank the following authors who helped me to make this decision: Rahma Rodaah (for inspiring me to know that it was about time), Richard Scrimger (for making the introduction to Hilary after his initial offer to do so 3 years ago), SK Ali and Susan Yoon (for advice and listening ears), and Joanne Levy, Susin Nielsen, and Susan Juby (as well as Richard and Rahma) for their glowing recommendations of Hilary. I look forward to working with Hilary.
In September, I began my second year of studies in the MFA in Creative Writing program at the University of Guelph. It has been a busy program. I have taken courses in fiction with Dionne Brand, screenwriting, creative nonfiction with Ayelet Tsabari, self-directed studies, and now drama and decolonial fiction. I continue to cohost the monthly online reading series, Speakeasy. My summer mentorship was with Jamaican Poet Laureate, Olive Senior and my thesis advisor is Shyam Selvadurai.
OLA Nomination Malaika’s Surprise was nominated for the 2022 Forest of Reading (Blue Spruce Award).🌳
This is a huge honour. The Forest of Reading is basically the #Canadian equivalent of the Kids’ Choice Awards but for books. This is my first Forest of Reading nomination.
It’s been twelve years now since I had read Blue Spruce nominated picture books 📚 to my second graders and helped them vote on their favourite. That year, Chester by Melanie Watt won!
And now, it’s my turn to be a part of the festivities as an author.
Congratulations to all of the nominees!
Join me for Cooking with Nadia episode 1: Malaika's Surprise as I talk about and make Caribbean dishes featured in my newest picture book, Malaika's Surprise. On today's menu are fried plantains, cornmeal porridge, and doubles. I even take you to Trinidad and Tobago. Enjoy!
You can view my full video here on IGTV or my YouTube channel. Please see this link. For a downloadable copy of the recipes, please visit the link.
interviews by nadia Check out my first episode of #interviewsbynadia with Harriet's Daughter author/poet M. NourbeSe Philip on my YouTube channel here.
Check out my second episode of #interviewsbynadia with Facing the Sun author Janice Lynn Mather here. This book was the 2021 CCBC Amy Mathers Teen Book Award winner.
In the winter term of my MFA in Creative Writing program at the University of Guelph, I did a self-directed reading course with Professor Jennifer Schacker. I decided to focus on books featuring Black adolescent girlhoods. As part of this course, I interviewed two young adult authors— M. NourbeSe Philip and Janice Lynn Mather. I hope you enjoy these interviews.
Articles and Podcasts
“How Harriet’s Daughter Helped Me Find My Way as a Black Canadian and a Writer for Young People”, Arc Poetry magazine (Arc 96 Islands of Influence Caribbean Canadian edition) (Fall 2021).
“Kojo’s Holiday”, Chickadee magazine (December 2021).
“Writer with a Capital W”, University of Waterloo podcast
“Writer Finds Resilience Stories Black Women and Girls”, University of Waterloo magazine (Spring 2021).
Journey to Grandma's House (Groundwood Books), Fall 2024.
Editor of Untitled anthology (Orca Books), Fall 2023.
Malaika #4 (Groundwood Books), Spring 2023.
Contributor to 100+ Voices for Miss Lou: Poetry, Tributes, Interviews, Essays anthology (UWI Press), 2021.
Interview in Contemporary Canadian Picture Books: A Critical Review for Educators, Librarians, Families, Researchers, & Writers by Beverley Brenna, Richard Dionne, and Theresa Tavares (Brill, 2021).
Malaika's Surprise (Groundwood Books), Spring 2021 https://houseofanansi.com/products/malaikas-surprise French version available in 2022 by Éditions Scholastic, Malaika's Surprise Book Trailer
A Likkle Miss Lou: How Jamaican Poet Louise Bennett-Coverley Found Her Voice (Owlkids), Aug. 15, 2019
Harriet Tubman: Freedom Fighter (Harper Collins), 2018
Malaika's Winter Carnival (Groundwood Books), 2017 (available in French and English paperback http://scholastic.ca/editions/livres/view/le-carnaval-de-malaika)
Malaika's Costume (Groundwood Books www.groundwoodbooks.com), 2016 (available in French paperback www.scholastic.ca) 2021 TD Book Giveaway
Music in the Sankofa series (Rubicon Publishing), 2015 www.sankofacollection.com
Media in the Sankofa series (Rubicon Publishing), 2015 www.sankofacollection.com
A Likkle Miss Lou: How Jamaican Poet Louise Bennett-Coverley Found Her Voice
Harriet Tubman: Freedom Fighter
Malaika's Winter Carnival
Monday, November 22 11:00-11:20am ET for OISE/UT Stay at Home Club on Twitter.
A big partnership this December that I can’t tell you about yet. (Follow my social media for details.)
Thursday, December 9 7pm ET Pre-Kwanzaa Pyjama Party on Zoom.
Telling Tales 2021
Toronto International Festival of Authors 2021 (TIFAKids)
Upcoming in Winter 2021 Nadia’s Notables Newsletter…
- MFA Update
- Toronto Arts Council grant
- Innisfil IDEALab Writer in Residence
- TD Book Giveaway on the Road
- MFA Update- The Thesis
© Nadia L. Hohn, 2021
Toronto, ON, Canada