Author Tags: Advice

Born in Milwaukee in 1948, Mary Schendlinger was the guiding force behind Maria Von Couver, a pseudonym for a six-member 'Power Parenting Collective' that co-wrote a semi-facetious guide to raising teenagers, Don't Say No, Just Let Go: Living With Teenagers The Power Parenting Solution (Arsenal Pulp, 1991). Other members who 'have had the responsibility for a total of eleven teenagers and lived to tell about it' are Nora Randall, Sandra Currie, screenwriter Peggy Thompson and Steve Osborne. Schendlinger also co-edited Quotations from Chairman Zalm, and as Eve Corbel she was the author/illustrator of Power Parenting Your Teenager (Hysteria Publications, 1997). She has edited The Little Greenish-Brown Book of Slugs and produced numerous comics that have appeared in Geist magazine, for which she has long served as Senior Editor. Schendlinger is a widely respected freelance editor, notably as the main conduit for novels by Anne Cameron. Her juvenile guide to ten famous magicians is Prepare to be Amazed (Annick, 2005), shortlisted for the 2007 Silver Birch Award, hosted by the Ontario Library Association.

[BCBW 2006] "Editor" "Advice"

Don't Say No, Just Let Go (Arsenal)

Don't Say No, Just Let Go (Arsenal), the humourous guide by Maria von Couver (aka Mary Schendlinger of Harbour Publishing) will be published this year by Andrews & McMeel, best known for its Calvin & Hobbes and Bloomsbury books.

[BCBW 1997]

Prepare to Be Amazed by Mary Schendlinger (Annick $14.95)

When she’s not transforming words into seamless prose for others—who usually get all the credit—topnotch editor Mary Schendlinger always has a few other tricks up her sleeve. As a member of a collective named Maria Von Couver, she co-wrote a book about parenting called Don’t Say No – Just let Go (Arsenal, 1991). As Eve Corbel, she has also developed a reputation as a cartoonist.
Schendlinger is one of the brains—and the workers—behind Geist magazine, plus she’s a member of a serious writers’ sorority that meets on a regular basis to critique one another’s work. Along those lines, Colleen MacMillan of Annick Press suggested there ought to be a decent kids’ book about magic.
“Like most mortals I love a good magic show,” says Schendlinger, “and another of my favourite things is to read up on people's lives.” After a year of research and a 90-degree learning curve, Schendlinger surprised herself by pulling a book out of a hat. Prepare to Be Amazed consists of 10 stories of some of the most awesome magicians from the 1840s to the present. Sorry, but the man they call Reveen doesn’t make the cut. Nor do Penn & Teller. Or New Westminster-born Mandrake, who honed his act at the PNE, performed as a tuxedo-clad illusionist for 47 years, inspired the comic strip Mandrake, and died in 1993.
Schendlinger begins her survey with the man who took magic out of the carnivals and circuses and took it into the theatre, Jean-Eugene Robert-Houdin, a pioneer trickster not to be confused with Harry Houdini, the showman who once visited Vancouver and dangled from an office building. Along the way we also meet Chung Ling Soo, who died onstage while performing the daring Bullet Catch trick, and David Copperfield, known for his state-of-the-art magic show with lasers and live video feeds. Each magician’s story is accompanied by a simple trick, in the spirit of that performer, that kids can learn. Included are:
Jean-Eugene Robert-Houdin
Adelaide Herrmann (1853–1932)
Chung Ling Soo (1861–1918)
Great Lafayette (1872–1911)
Harry Houdini (1874–1926)
Harry Blackstone (1885–1965)
P. C. Sorcar (1913-1971)
Siegfried and Roy (1939–, 1944–)
Doug Henning (1947–2000)
David Copperfield (1956– )


[BCBW 2005]