In my Monday morning "Writing for Children" class this week, I talked about how writers need to stretch. What I meant was we need to try challenging things when we write. We need to keep writing even when we want to stop. I asked my students, "Doesn't stretching feel good?"

One student, S.S., called out "No!" -- and everyone laughed. So, to prove my point(and to help wake the class up), I made the students get out of their chairs and do a little stretching exercise. Don't worry, we did some aerobics first so we were warmed up!

I have been thinking a lot about stretching this week. Physical stretching feels good to me, and so does stretching as a writer. Did I tell you that Sarah Harvey, who is editing one of my upcoming books at Orca, did not like the title I suggested for my Nunavik book? I'll admit my original title, On the George River, was a little well... dull. I submitted my revision earlier this week, and at the same time I suggested a few new possibilities for titles. For me, thinking of titles is a STRETCH -- it's something that doesn't come naturally for me, and that takes a lot of effort. And guess what happened? 

(Skipping space here to build suspense...)

 Sarah really liked, no, she LOVED one of my titles. So, in October 2009, look for a book called In the Middle of Nowhere. Let me know what you think of that title. It's after eight and I've been at the computer since four today... time to do a little reading before I call it a day. Ahhh (sound of a writer about to get back to the good book she's reading!)