Hey there, friends of Wally!  It’s been a while!

Things have been moving along steadily for Wally and myself.  Sales have continued to trickle on, and just this past month Armchair books ordered my very last 25 copies of Wally Learns to Ski, making a re-print necessary.

That’s 2500 copies since 2010!!  GO WALLY!!!

I’ve been working for a couple of years now on a new project, called Tippet, the Whippet of the North, and hope to use Wally’s success to help me find an agent and publishing house, so it won’t be necessary for me to drag a bag of books across the continent this time.  (As much as I love that, it’s more challenging now with two little kids…)

Thanks, as always, for your constant support.

Hey there Wally Followers…

It’s been a busy Fall, Winter and Spring for Wally’s Little Helper…

I haven’t been as diligent with the Wally project as I should be, mainly because I’ve been barrelling down the hill into motherhood like Wally barrels down the hill.  Two weeks after I left on the second leg of my Wally tour last year, I discovered that my fiance and I were expecting our first child.  I didn’t mention it beforehand because it was still so early on, but now I’m happy to announce that I have a new son named Raven, who makes my world a better place.  He’ll be seven weeks old on Tuesday.

Anyway, blogging wasn’t necessarily the first thing on my mind these past months, but I’m going to try to pick it up a bit.

In November, Wally got the great news that Whistler/Blackcomb had decided to pick up the book, and has been sold on both mountains and ski shops since.  I think the sales have been a bit better in the Valley than on the hill, so if you’re on the hill, it would be great if you wanted to pick it up from one of the mountaintop shops.

Sales in Whistler Valley have been great!  Armchair books continues to sell Wally like hotcakes,  and the Whistler/Blackcomb ski shops are doing well too.  Wally’s also available in Whistler at the Oracle, the Whistler Museum, and Whoola Toys.

In Vancouver Wally found his way into a fantastic little toy store on Commercial Drive called Dilly Dally.  It has amazing toys for kids of all ages, with a focus on hand made and wooden toys, and fantastic displays.  If you’re on the Drive, you should definitely check it out.

I was disappointed to find out that Wally didn’t make it into the running of the BC Book Awards finalists, but I wish all the finalists the best of luck and look forward to finding out who won at the winners gala in April.

I was also disappointed to check the Vancouver Kidsbooks website a while back and realize that they had taken Wally off the site.  According to the owner, it’s still there, but I haven’t been able to find it in any of my searches.  They sold almost 40 copies last year, so I’m surprised that they took it down, but she assured me that it’s still available to order from their website, so if anyone wanted to order it online from them, it’s still there even though it doesn’t appear to be.

Apart from that, I’ve been spending my time finishing up my new book, Tippet the Whippet of the North.  It’s written in the same style as Wally and focuses on a skinny little dog trying to find his place in a Northern community.  If all goes according to plan, it should be available for purchase within the next few months.  I have a few paintings left to complete, then editing and the publishing process, and hopefully i can find time in between Mommy duties.

Thanks for reading, and I’ll work hard on keeping more up to date!

Wally’s Little Helper

Hi There Wally Fans!!!

Sorry it’s been such a while again- Wally’s little helper here has been doing a lot of legwork, and her legs are tired!!!

I’m currently in Ireland, visiting some old friends and getting my thoughts together for a novel i’ve been working on for years now, which takes place here.  I’m quietly going about finding distributors that may be interested in Wally but i’m mostly keeping my head down.  I got a lot of resistance at the border from the cranky border man who looked sorry at his lot in life.  I think he has something against hippie chicks.  Anyway, i’m here on a tourist visa, so i’ve got to keep my eyes open but my mouth shut, if you know what i mean.

I was pretty tired upon hitting Toronto, and i made the mistake of thinking that walking would help me find places to sell.  Oops.  Word to the wise, if you’re seeking something in Toronto, save yourself the time and google the address first.  The city is ENORMOUS!!!

I don’t have much to report in the way of sales unfortunately, though i did get Wally into a couple of stores in Orangeville Ontario.  Personal sales have been going well, I sold a number to friends who live in Ontario, and also a few to a lovely Scottish lady that was on my flight to Glasgow.  I think they’re for her grandchildren.  I like Grannies.

Also, a wonderful young lady I shared a hostel dorm with, Tuulikki from Finland, bought a copy even though her younger siblings won’t be able to read it for quite some time, speaking only Finnish.  Still, it’s exciting to think that Wally’s making his way around the world.

I received an amazing letter from a couple from Alberta that i’m hoping to post once i get in touch with them.  Online access has been patchy, but i’m trying to reply to emails as quick as i can.

Thanks for reading guys! I’ll try to update more frequently from now on!

Kelsey

First he skied,  now he tweets!!! What is next for this precocious Alpaca? Well you will just have to  follow him to find out!.

To fine him on Twitter® all you have to do is click

You can also join Wally’s Facebook® group 

So despite being very pretty, Saskatchewan hasn’t really been much help in the Wally department.  I think perhaps it’s a mountains vs prairies thing, but who can be sure.

I did manage to make three personal sales, which was nice.  I had a hotdog for breakfast on a street bench, and the man beside me started up a conversation, which lead to my mentioning the Wally project.  As it turns out, his daughter’s name is also Kelsey, and he has little people in his life, so I was very happy to sell him two copies.

I visited White Cat Books in downtown Saskatoon, which deals entirely in the second hand variety, but the owner was kind enough to purchase one for himself, and tell me how to get to another big bookstore.

I bussed out to McNally Robinson, a huge bookstore in the back and beyond (it felt like anyway) of Saskatoon.  Unfortunately, the book buyer is away until July, but i left a copy for consideration.  Hopefully they take a few so that Saskatoon isn’t a total loss.

I went to a couple other stores and tried, with no luck.  One independant bookstore owner said that it “Didn’t have enough of a theme of social justice” for them to consider it.  I guess next time I’ll scrap fun things like skiing and move onto “Wally Fights For Suri Rights” against the reign of the fascist Huacayas.

Maybe then buddy at Socially Justified Independant Books would be more interested.

Oh well.

Tonight, redeye bus to Winnipeg.  Perhaps the Manitobans will be more receptive.

Hey there Wally fans,

I’m in Saskatoon right now.  I spent the night at a great little hotel called Hotel Senator, and happened to get a couple of good bookstore leads from a lady walking by.  Thank you kindly, Sheila LaRoque. :)

Time to go reconcile the mountains and the prairies! Wish us luck!

Kelsey & Wally

Hey there Wally fans…

It’s been a while since i’ve written, and there’s a lot to catch up on!

I stayed in Smithers for an evening and got Wally Learns to Ski in two of their local bookstores, Eagle Mountain Books (which makes an excellent chai latte) and Spee Dee books and stationary.  Smithers was very quaint, with an alpine theme to it and gorgeous mountain views.  I’m still considering it as a location for Tippet the Whippet.

Next, I had great success in Prince George, and managed to move 20 books, not including a bunch of personal sales!  Books & Co. was awesome- nice spot and wonderful selection of literature.  The gift shop in the Two Rivers Gallery also took some- that’s the main art gallery in Prince George.  Great gift shop- it was perfect because i also had the oppertunity to score some gorgeous silver earrings in time to send them to my mom for mother’s day.  Another store to bite was called Homework, in downtown PG, and then the gift shop of the Exploration Place, where my friend Amanda helped me set up a couple of readings for their “young explorers”.  It was lots of fun.  The kids enjoyed manhandling my alpaca toque and telling me how soft it was.

I putzed about a bit for the weekend and wound up visiting some dear friends in Lac La Hache, then went to Kamloops.

Kamloops was great, and it felt like summer was in full swing already.  I’ve been noticing the advance of spring by watching the lilacs in different parts of the province.  While the ones up north had yet to bud, these ones were in full bloom, and it was great not to have to wear a parka.

Wally made his way into The Art We Are in downtown Kamloops, the Kamloops Public Library, and the Book Place.  I sold a couple more copies to some friends with kids, and then low and behold!!! SOLD OUT!!!

Back to Vancouver for two weeks to recoup and restock, and then straight to Kelowna to visit my bro, his lovely wife and my beautiful nephew.  Kelowna’s Mosaic Books took 6 copies, the Okanagan Library took 3.

We drove up to Revelstoke and got a few into a bookstore there, sold a few more personal copies, then decided to go to the farmer’s market.  What to my wandering eyes should appear, but a booth with alpaca wool from a local farm, and on their table?  A COPY OF WALLY LEARNS TO SKI!!!! Apparently he’d gotten it from my old employer at the farm where the real Wally lives, but the coincidence was awesome.

I moved on the next day to Canmore to visit my aunt, uncle and cousins.  My uncle drove us back up to Lake Louise, and we went into the magnificent Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise.  The building is just gorgeous, apparently it’s over 100 years old and reminds me of a German castle i once visited.  The man in Mountain Lights Bookstore was very kind, and was happy to take 8 copies of Wally, assuring me that i should let him know as soon as Tippet the Whippet is out.  Bonus.

I also managed to get one store in Banff to take a few copies on consignment, but for the most part i ran into well practiced pretentious snobs who frowned upon my hippie attire and my cheerful demeanor.  I wonder whether it’s a Whistler vs Banff rivalry thing.  They’ll wish they were nicer to me when Wally takes over the world. ;)

Canmore was great, one of the stores downtown took 6 copies and the other i have still yet to ask.  I spent a single day in Calgary but was foolish enough not to google bookstores first, so my cousin and i spent a few hours wandering aimlessly before we found the library.  The Calgary Library took 4 copies though, which makes it worth it.  I think i’ll spend another day in Calgary before i head off to Saskatoon.

And that’s pretty much where things stand in Wally’s World.  I should be taking off in another day or so.  I’m looking forward to the rolling hills of the prairies- i’ve never been there before.  I’ll try to update more frequently so i don’t have to write an essay every time.

Ski well!

It’s been great so far on the Wally tour of 2010!

I started the journey with my mom, dad and Scooby the dog on the 20th of April.  We toured the Sunshine Coast and Texada Island, then began working up and down Vancouver Island.

Travelling with Mom & Pops was pretty casual and laid back- we were more concerned with having a good time than working too hard, but there was still some payoff to be spoken of.

Wally made his way into bookstores in Cambell River, Courtney, Tofino, Port Alberni, and Victoria, then i headed up North to Port Hardy to catch a ferry up to Prince Rupert.

I’ve been in Prince Rupert for two days now and have had great success.

Rainforest Books bought 6 copies which are now available, and i got three other personal sales in as well.  I’m pretty pleased, and have been enjoying the beautiful scenery.

Tomorrow, it’s off to Smithers, where I hope to speak to some bookstores and get some research done for my next book, Tippet, the Whippet of the North.

Wally is going across Canada and visiting various locations for book readings and book signings.

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Also you can check here often for next book reading location and upcoming schedule!