Hitting The Ex every year has become a tradition for us. There's something about the fact that it's only open 18 days a year (and that it's close unofficially marks the end of summer) that makes the experience kind of bittersweet. So this year we couldn't resist the temptation to visit not once but twice.
Kristen Johnson, escape artist

We managed to catch escape artist Kristen Johnson this time around. Kristen performs Houdini's Water Torture Cell escape with a difference—she does it in full view!

Kristen Johnson, escape artist
Canadian Forces Exhibit

Canadian Forces Exhibit

I didn't notice this while snapping the above photo of the Canadian Forces exhibit but if you look closely you'll be able to spot one way you can tell American and Canadian soldiers apart—that's right, a cup of Tim Hortons coffee.
Take Me Home!

The Midway at Sunset

The magic hour, CNE
Mega Drop at Sunset

Ferris Wheel at sunset

Farewell, Ex. It's been a blast! See you next year...
I Know It's OverI Know It's Over will hit bookstores soon and to help celebrate I'm holding a contest at my website!

One I Know It's Over prize pack will be randomly awarded. The prize pack includes: a signed copy of I Know It's Over, a 12"x18" IKIO poster, the winner's choice of a courier or tote bag, a Magic 8 Ball and an advance reader copy of One Lonely Degree (when it becomes available!).

To enter email me with your name, the subject line "IKIO Contest" and the answer to the below question by September 22nd.

 * What's the first song on the I Know It's Over soundtrack/playlist? (hint: the answer appears on my website)Good luck everybody!

Draw date is September 23rd, the novel's release date!
I Know It's Over tape
jacket photograph copyright © 2008 by Ali Smith
Umm....Publishers Weekly just gave I Know It's Over a starred review.

Spoiler alert in effect! Don't peek if you don't want to know the outcome of certain plot points.

It's one hell of a review. I'm completely chuffed and will likely remain that way for days!

Weird to think that with every day that goes by Nick and Sasha, who I spent so much time with while writing I Know It's Over, belong less exclusively to me. I wonder at what point that will begin to feel natural. As it is I still feel a little strange hearing other people discuss them...
As usual, I don't want to admit we're in the dog days of summer. In the Toronto area, this summer has been full of insane amounts of rain, lightning bolts, thunder and even hail, which makes our inevitable march towards fall (and, gasp, winter!) all the more painful. By August 9th we'd broken the previous summer rainfall record set back in 1986. Yup, we've had the wettest summer since they started keeping track.

But today, the second day of the Canadian National Exhibition, the weather cooperated and delivered a perfectly sunny twenty-six degree day so I offer mother nature a bow along with a cheerful smile of thanks. As you can see, my fellows riders on the Crazy Mouse were also offering grins of thanks (I suspect they may be involved in the witness protection program but it would've been impolite to ask).

If you plan on hitting The Ex tomorrow don't forget to check out the TTC subway musician auditions being held beside the Food Building (west side). The talent level varies but some of them will blow you away.

On the Crazy Mouse, CNE, August 16, 2008
I really want to thank Carol of Bookluver-Carol's Reviews for interviewing me for Genre of the Month.

The interview's up now and you can find it here.

Thanks again for the interview opportunity, Carol! It was a pleasure.
I spoke to my local newspaper recently. You can check the article out online here: Author explores teen issues in book.
Olympic symbol
Best of luck to all the Canadian & Irish Olympic athletes!

Irish flag

Canadian flag

Planned Parenthood have a funny & informative new website called takecaredownthere.org which includes videos about condom use, STDs and various other sexual health topics.

Predictably, some people aren't happy about it, calling the videos "twisted" and an "attack on your children."

But information is power. The more you know about what's going on down there and what you can do to keep yourself healthy, the more empowered you are. Some folks just don't like that idea and that's what I call really twisted.

Stay safe!
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