Ann Walsh - Cariboo Author

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  I attended school in South Africa, Kansas, England, Holland, Saskatchewan, and finally ended up in Vancouver, B.C. in 1953 where I spent the rest of my growing-up years.

After I finished university, my husband and I moved to Williams Lake for a "few years" to teach. Those "few" years stretched into many more as we settled here, bought a house and raised two children to adulthood; one is now a nurse, the other a teacher.

We lived on eighteen acres a short distance from the town of Williams Lake, and still have a tiny summer cabin on a nearby lake that I visit each summer. There is no power, road or phone at our cabin so it is lit by oil lamps, heated by a wood stove. Visitors stand on the far shore and shout until we hear them and boat over to pick them up.

I now live in Victoria, BC, but still have a great fondness for The Cariboo Region of BC where I lived for many years.

My first book,
Your Time, My Time, was written after a ten day short writing course in Wells, B.C. with Robin Skelton. It took ten months, and I wrote it on the kitchen table on a manual typewriter, each page typed at least three times, 230 pages in the completed manuscript. I was very surprised when I actually finished it and more than surprised when, after a year, it was sold to a publisher.

When I write I do a lot of pre-planning and research (many of my books are set in B.C.'s past) and I plan the plot of the story thoroughly before I begin to write. I am beginning to use a computer; I used an electric typewriter until recently.

I believe that rewriting is the most important part of writing: revising, checking grammar and spelling, deciding if each word is exactly the right choice or if the characters and plot are believable. That is also the hardest part of writing, at least to me.
I don't know where I get my ideas from, except that they often come from historical events and places. Some locations, such as Barkerville, seem to cry out to be written about.

I also write short stories for adult magazines, poetry, the occasional article for the newspaper, and am working on a mystery novel, also for adults.

I enjoy speaking to kids, and do a lot of travelling and talking in schools about my books and B.C.'s history. My short stories and articles for adults have appeared in Canadian Living, been heard on CBC and been printed in journals and magazines around the world.
  • 2014 – Whatever  short listed for The Chocolate Lily
  • 2006 – Flower Power, short-listed for The Chocolate Lily Award
  • 2005 – Beginnings, Stories of Canada’s Past, short listed for The Golden Oak Award
  • 1999 – The Doctor’s Apprentice – Nominated for The B.C. Book Prizes, 1999; short-listed for the Geoffrey Bilson Award for Historical Fiction
  • Shabash! – Short listed for the Silver Birch Award.
  • 1990 – The Ghost of Soda Creek – Canadian Library Association Notable selection
  • 1989 – Moses, Me and Murder! – Short listed for the Geoffrey Bilson Award for Historical Fiction
  • 1984 – Your Time, My Time – Short listed for the Y. A. Novel Award (Saskatchewan Librarians’ Association); chosen by Emergency Librarian as the best Canadian children’s book of 1984.