A Guinness World record...

You know when you are a kid and someone hands you a copy of 'The Guinness Book of World Records' and you feel like it just might be the most important book ever published? The sum of all knowledge, arcane facts, photographs and histories, an entertainment simultaneously wondrous and spellbinding... and you think,“just maybe if you never cut your fingernails, or if you hold your breath, or live a really long time, or grow extremely tall, or strike it rich, or gain a lot of weight, then maybe, just maybe you could get a Guinness World Record”. Then you go outside and play, you go to school, grow up, fall in love, and work. Responsibilities take your life in its own direction and the dreams of childhood get put on the shelf. In this adult life each day seems much like the next, and you think things might never change. Well sometimes they do change, like one day in January my friend Bruce called and told me that a book I published made it into the Guinness Book of World Records.

To find out more about the project see 'Teeny Ted From Turnip Town'
To see the Guinness World Record see Smallest Book

I enjoy the privilege of sharing this record with my brother, Malcolm Douglas Chaplin, and the nano-imaging lab at SFU. One day someone may beat this record, and they will be lucky enough to know how I feel right now.

The Alcuin Society and excellent book design

The Alcuin Society is a national organization dedicated to supporting excellence in book design. Every year the Alcuin society holds an open competition for excellence in Canadian book design. Although this is the second time one of my library editions has received placement in the prestigious Alcuin awards , there is a first time for everything. This week I found out that ‘Brussels Sprouts & Unicorns-library edition’ placed first in the Kids book category. Many excellent Kids books were published in Canada this year, and it was a privilege to be allowed to compete. I'd like to thank Scott Hawthorn and Sian Pairaudeau for helping to make this project possible, The Alcuin society for seeing the value in beautifully produced books, and Mrs Johnston for letting me help in the library when I was a Kid .

Putting a Face on This

Authors always have these fancy photos, on their dust jackets, publishers never do. Neither did the great American writer, Dr Seuss. That said, posting a picture on the internet seems reasonable. So now you can put a human face on this company. This is me, about to cross the street in Vancouver, it's one of those grey days, we get them here, and when its like that you can't see the mountains. Click on the books link to sample the Library Editions titles to date. Read and enjoy.

Photo Credit: Hélène Gauchou
Pecha Kucha: I’m doing a little public speaking, at this thing we do, Pecha Kucha. It is an evening where local people of interest come out and do a show and tell. People like it. It’s fun to see and learn about what other creative people do, and learn about their influences, struggles and success. It’s inspirational to hear other peoples stories, and we at Library Editions appreciate the opportunity.

The need to read: Can you imagine the life of an adult who doesn’t know how to read? I never could, I mean it’s been so long since I learned how, that I’d taken it for granted. These people don’t, and it’s something you might like to think about. Despite the fact that Canada has one of the highest literacy rates in the world, these people have fallen through every crack in the system. With multiple barriers to employment, they are trying to make their life better at First United Church. These students are learning to read, studying to get a GED, or otherwise improve their reading comprehension and basic math skills. For their efforts they are provided with a clean well lit space to study, and lunch, so that they can concentrate. That’s me on the left, My friend Sandra Mackay asked me to come to the class room at First United and show the students my books. It was a wonderful experience to meet these people; they were a kind and considerate audience. I would challenge everyone to participate in community literacy. Knowing how to read, and having the ability to understand, is not privilege it is a Right.