Trillium Book Awards Author Reading 2015


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Today's Whazamo comic comes from Tory Woollcott, a Toronto-based cartoonist who made her debut with the graphic memoir Mirror Mind: Growing up Dyslexic. Besides being well told, what made Mirror Mind stand out is that it is one of the first stories in any medium that really got across what dyslexia actually is, and how it affects those who struggle with it.

By using the visual language of comics, Tory captured all the different ways and confusing tricks the 'mirror mind' plays on those affected by it. Her memoir also shows how in many ways, dyslexia just made her more determined to read and to draw.

For her Whazamo! Comic, Tory chose Douglas Adams' The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, one of the first books she was able to navigate on her own, despite dyslexia, with a little help from the audio version. Her comic also makes a fitting coda to the cliched understanding of the condition: about a dream date with Ford Prefect, who she can only describe as 'perfect.'

You can learn more about Tory's comics at her website: (Oh and if you happen to find her at a convention, she's also been known to knit the occasional septapus. Don't worry--they're not as dangerous as they look.)

WHAZAMO! Comics: Graphic vs Novel
Every TUESDAY and THURSDAY for the month of May, Open Book: Toronto will feature an original comic by a Canadian cartoonist. We asked them to share a story of one book that has inspired them as artists, as storytellers, as people. Together, their comics will open a window, a panel if you will, into the mysterious process of inspiration.

Click on the illustrations for a better look. (The images can be further enlarged by clicking on the icon with four arrows that will appear.)

The views expressed in the Writer-in-Residence blogs are those held by the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of Open Book: Toronto.

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Ian Daffern

Ian Daffern directs and produces documentary videos and writes about books and comics for places like Quill and Quire, The Globe and Mail and The National Post. He's also half of the mighty writing team behind Freelance Blues, your favourite new supernatural-horror-comedy comic (tm).

His website can be found here at
Video blog:
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Go to Ian Daffern’s Author Page