Thursday, December 13, 2012

Dem some BIG BOOTS yer steppin into....

I am trying to remember the approximate date that I met Christine Tripp online. I had illustrated a big corporate job, and one or two books for Scholastic LPFEY... and I had just joined the SCBWI forums.
I watched, and learned for a bit - and noticed one person, in particular, was responding to people's questions in a very thoughtful and professional manner. As time went by I realized she was CANADIAN!!

I was still pretty quiet online, until one day I was offered a trade book contract.

The contract was not ideal. But in my rookie state I was just excited to GET a contract at all - to write and illustrate MY own books. I posted a few vague questions about rights, royalties etc. and Christine was amazing in her thoughtful, and eloquent responses. I also thought it was cool that she said she knew my work (which may or may not have been true, but it felt awesome to have someone say that)

What she did for me over those few weeks of negotiations was far more helpful than even helping me to negotiate a better contract - she helped me to understand how the system works. She explained it to me from a Canadian context - which IS different than anywhere else, and she helped me develop something else - a backbone for negotiations.

It was not until I finally went to a SCBWI conference at Kempenfelt, in Barrie, that I met her in person. She is one of those people that as soon as you meet them - you feel like you have KNOWN them your whole life. She is funny and passionate and SUPER, SUPER talented. She has a humble demeanour and did I mention funny? Actually, ALL the organizers were awesome. I also met Lizann Flatt and Alma Fullerton that weekend too.

I am an involved person. I have a hard time saying no... which is why I end up on boards and committees and parent councils - that's me. Not because I have endless amounts of time, but because I care, and I can't go to an event without trying to help.

SO, it is with excitement and trepidation I announce officially that Chris has stepped down as Illustrator Co-ordinator for SCBWI Canada East, and I am stepping up to take the reins. I look forward to working with Chris still, Lizann, Alma, Rachel and Michelle. I am thrilled they have taken me into the fold...

So, THANK you Christine - you rock.


  1. Big shoes to fill Peggy, but I have not doubt that you will knock this out of the park! And just for the record everyone, I knew Peggy when she was just an art college student with paint all over!

  2. Do you know Peggy that I just found this post for the first time? I am embarrassed, humbled, honoured, thank you but you are far too complimentary. I'm the lucky one to know you and I'm REALLY lucky someone with your energy, passion and talent has a 28 hour day, unlike the rest of us mere mortals, to take on the task of IC! You have already done a bang up job of it in just a few months, with the Children's Illustrators Blog "Mashup" and the Fall conference coming soon.
    Thank YOU!:)