Eva Stachniak provides a much-needed writer recharge

Alright already, I know it’s been awhile… In fact, I’m acutely aware of it. With the monumental elephant-in-the-room distraction of school, it’s been a slim couple of months in terms of my personal writing and author mental health. You know what I’m talking about, right? When I don’t carve out …


Sugar Hangover: A Diabetic Post-Halloween [COMIC]

Now that I’ve emerged from Halloween alive and healthy, I feel this holiday deserves some reflection on strategy (hey, every year it’s kind of a toss up as to the survival of sugar binge. I’m pretty sure the Keebler elves are out to get me). Like clockwork, every Halloween since I was six years old has been met with an onslaught of pity from the regular sugary folk out there.

“Poor dear, you can’t enjoy Halloween like a normal kid.” (Aka: you can’t gorge yourself silly on sugar mini choco bars of heaven and wake up the next morning in a pile of empty wrappers and your own drool while stray raccoons poke you).

My initial urge was always to jump up and down and shriek like a demented leprechaun: I am too a normal kid! I eat candy for Halloween! My dad will beat you up if you don’t give me candy! [NOTE: while my dad was never one for candy-related fisticuffs, I feel confident that he would have totally thrown a few punches for a mini-O'Henry.]

This policy shifted subtly as I grew older. It became apparent that when a trick-or-treat stash dwindled overnight, or (let’s be honest) flat-out disappeared into ooey-gooey yumness in my belly, the last person accused was the sad little Diabetic girl in the corner making puppy dog eyes at her box of raisins. Before you chase me with pitchforks for this “alleged” choco-cide, let me just say that this evil stage of adolescence did not last long. It only takes one time getting caught before you become the go-to suspect for chocolate disappearances.

I shifted to my current model of Halloween celebration. It starts with good intentions, trying to look down my nose at the people around me partaking in an all-around sugar orgy as I try to valiantly convince myself as I eat my salad that yes, I am a fun person. Then comes the roller coaster ride of the sugar high, the sugar crash, and, as I mentioned before, the raccoons. FYI: they are not as cuddly and cute as they seem.


YA Book Talks: Lessons from Scott Westerfeld and James Dashner

maze runner

Kidsbooks, where have you been all my life? When I recently discovered this amazing little bookstore on Vancouver’s West Broadway, it was akin to learning for the first time at 26 that Santa Claus really does exist. A giddy, self-righteous, “holy crap really? This is AWESOME!” kind of feeling.

Within a week I had purchased two tickets to readings hosted by Kidsbooks, one for Scott Westerfeld (author of the Uglies and Leviathan series), and James Dashner, author of the Maze Runner series. Both authors had recently released the final books in these trilogies, and were bringing the YA love to Canada.


Author Groupie: A Frenzied Encounter with the Creator of the Oatmeal


Allow me to preface this with a note: I do not get starstruck.

If I met Justin Bieber at the malt shoppe, or wherever it is these whippersnappers hang out these days, I would quite possibly cut through the hordes of screaming teen girls and tell him to get a haircut. Same with just about any celebrity: haircut.

But when I set out to meet Matthew Inman, the writer/comic behind the Oatmeal, there was a percolating feeling of groupie craziness coursing through my veins—the bookish equivalent of that urge to toss one’s panties onstage at a rock concert (SIGN MY TITLES!). After all, this was the awesome factor 10 creative cybernerd behind some of my favourite comics:


Willy Wonka Chocolate Factory for Book Nerds


On Saturday, me and Count Chocula (my sugar-loving graphic designer boyfriend) headed to the Alcuin Wayzgoose print fair. In case you think I’ve started drinking in the mornings (as the only explanation for going to an event with goose in the title that didn’t involve barbeque sauce), allow me to clarify. For a number of reasons, this event was a must-see for this starry eyed publishing newbie:

  • I am a book nerd: the smell of linen paper and hot type is akin to crack. It’s what sends shivers up my neck to my librarian’s bob.
  • Hello? FREE.
  • What the hell is a Wayzgoose? This mystery just could not be left alone.

eBooks-My Very Own Consumer Research Panel (Mom)

I’ve been tardy with you my dear blogosphere. The last month and a half ushered in my first foray back to school in a few years for a Master’s in Publishing degree. The past month has been something of a work-your-butt-off-cry-home-to-your-mama fest, also precipitating my induction to modern technology with …


Diabetes Viking: How I learned to embrace pillaging and plundering

I unhooked my pump and glanced up the mountain. The freaking-steep-trip-and-fall-on-your-skull mountain. I rehooked the tubing of my pump, unhooked, re-hooked; my own soothing OCD routine to cope with nerves. I hear the little click and feel the snap of plastic catching in place. I’m not sure when such security-blanket …


Traditional or Self Publishing? Figure it out genius (but don’t ask any more damn questions about copyright please . . .)

I’m often asked by writers/authors whether one should seek to publish traditionally, or go the self-publishing route. Doe-eyed authors look up at me, all dewy and misty around the lashes, and look at me for a magic bullet I could offer to publishing success and fortune. I usually respond by …


Chronically ill mud-wrestling: to the victor goes the cure!

Since the moment I was diagnosed with Type One Diabetes twenty years ago, I have been hearing that a cure is right around the corner. Really soon! Maybe this year! Right around the corner! In your lifetime for sure! People wanted me to give money to find a cure, say …


Bookstore Etiquette: 5 simple steps to avoid looking like an ass among the stacks

I’m a geek, alright? One of those lisping, former braces-wearing, snorts when laughing, loves dried prunes kind of nerdly behemoths—if it was socially acceptable I’m sure my pants would be well above my belly button. We’re talking Urkel style: he is my messiah. I visit the library on average about …


Short bio about me for those of you who want to skip to the important bits:

I am a writer, publishing geek, and hardcore word nerd from BC Canada. I am also a Type One Diabetic. Some additional essential information:

  • I don't think the book is dying anytime soon. Those who say it is are probably trying to sell you a new tablet of some sort.
  • Don't ask me who my favourite author is unless you have about two hours to spare staring down the butt-end of a nerdy diatribe
  • I like treats of the chocolate variety (don't tell my doctor!).
  • I have a penchant for fat, cuddly cats.
  • After 20 years of 3+ needles per day, I am almost to the point where they no longer scare me.

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