Working with author Donna Mann on creating a website for children’s stories was an opportunity to bring my 25 years of teaching experience to a new role as Narrator.

With Donna Mann at Meadowlane’s website launch in November, 2009.
Artist Anna Gruda’s water colour painting captures the vision of
“A Promise” - one of Donna’s imaginative children’s stories
Photo by Eric Lundsted

Recording stories at Little Box Studios in Durham, Ontario

My story of how MeadowLane Audio Stories was birthed is a little different from Donna's. While exploring the publishing world, I consulted Donna who had offered to share her wealth of knowledge in this field. We spoke about many details, like being careful about copyright issues and respecting artists when an author uses clipart or photographs to enhance a piece of writing. Donna showed me some of her self-published material and other work waiting to be published.

As she showed me story after story of her Grammie books, written for and with her grandchildren, I knew that I wanted to read all of them. I was immediately convinced that lots of other people would want to read them too! Isn't that always the way? We can often see the treasure in other people's work, even before they acknowledge it themselves. Humility is a beautiful trait; yet, sometimes we can all benefit from a little nudge to let our light shine on a whole new audience. It is my honour and privilege to narrate Donna's uplifting tales of real farm animals, whimsical creatures and lovable kids.

With Donna Mann at the Write! Canada Awards Gala (2008) where Donna’s book, Aggie’s Storms, was short-listed for a Word Guild award. “Aggie’s Storms” re-creates the childhood of Agnes Macphail, Canada’s first woman member of parliament. My mother worked as Agnes Macphail’s housekeeper for a period of time during Agnes’ political career. While employed as “Aggie’s girl” my mother met my father who chauffeured Agnes to various functions, and as they say, “the rest is history!”

Photo by Doug Mann

Poetry Speaker, Sharon Sinclair

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