Trillium Book Awards Author Reading 2015

Toronto Gets Ready for Storybook Confidential!

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Storybook Confidential

On September 16th, everyone is invited to Storybook Confidential, a big benefit for Small Print Toronto! Small Print Toronto was founded in 2008 by Chris Reed, Don Kerr and Lauren Stewart. Small Print is a non-profit organization that creates workshops and interactive literary events for children throughout the GTA. For the past five years, Small Print Toronto has grown to include many popular events such as Totsapalooza, Toronto Roald Dahl Day and Comic Arts for Kids Expo (CAKE) . Its workshops invite children up to age of 12 to participate in creating and telling their own stories with the guidance of professional illustrators and authors.

For its fifth anniversary, Small Print Toronto decided to host its first Storybook Confidential in support of the project’s interactive literary programs for children. The event takes place at the Gladstone Hotel on September 16th, and it promises to be a celebration of Toronto’s literary, art and indie rock worlds as they collide to bring attendees a night full of fun and amusement. Some activities to look forward to include authors reading from the stories they wrote from when they were children, top picture book artists, designers and illustrators running a Body Art booth and a Make Me a Storybook booth, and a whole lot of dancing. The night promises to be one of excitement and laughs as attendees are encouraged to leave the kids at home and have a great time!

To tell us more about Storybook Confidential and Small Print Toronto, Chris Reed answers some of our questions and encourages everyone to come out and have fun!

Open Book:

Why did you decide to hold the benefit?

Chris Reed:

Small Print Toronto is currently in the midst of a growth spurt, both operationally and in terms of our programming. We need support to secure the resources needed to sustain our growth. Behind the scenes, we are turning our grassroots, volunteer–based group into a registered charity. We’ve assembled an amazingly dynamic and dedicated Board of Directors.

In addition to our annual fall offerings like Toronto Roald Dahl Day, we’re staging Cracking The Case with Evan Munday, a murder-mystery scavenger hunt to launch his latest Dead Kid Detective Agency book, Dial M for Morna, and Crayon Creators Club, a Tots Studio session based on Oliver Jeffers’ latest creation, The Day The Crayons Quit.

We’re chuffed that two top Can-Kid-Lit presses asked us to help them celebrate major milestones this fall. We’re baking a CAKE (Comic Arts for Kids Expo) for KidsCan Press’ 40th anniversary, and presenting A Groundswell of Great Stories, an author showcase to celebrate the 35th anniversary of Groundwood Books.

And on top of it all, we’re already starting to prepare our 6th annual Totsapalooza, which takes place Saturday, February 1, 2014. It will feature an exclusive Toronto appearance by renowned Scottish KidLit superstar Julia Donaldson, author of such classics as The Gruffalo.

OB:

Why you think the event is important for the Small Print Toronto project?

CR:

Storybook Confidential is our first–ever benefit, which is significant insofar as it points to a new stage in the evolution of Small Print Toronto. Our project has gone from operating with no profit to being a non-profit. The event is as much a public celebration of what we’ve accomplished as it is a graceful way to ask people to shake out their pockets. Small Print has a history of supporting other community groups, such as The Children’s Storefront, Girl’s Rock Camp and LGBT Parenting Network. We felt that it was time to direct our efforts to our own efforts.

OB:

What are some of your goals for the benefit? What are you trying to accomplish?

CR:

Beyond strengthening our bottom line, we’d like to raise the public profile of Small Print Toronto beyond our traditional audience base of children and their parents/caregivers. Storybook Confidential also marks the start of our fall season, so we’d also like to spread the word about what we have on offer. Most of the performers on the bill have played a part in the Small Print Toronto project over the years. The event is a showcase for their work. Above all else, we hope that everyone will have a fantastically fun evening!

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