Winners' Circle: Corinne Mordaunt

August 28, 2020

Welcome to the Winners' Circle where we celebrate the success of our ICL students. Today we are celebrating published author Corinne Mordaunt!

What is the title of your article? Who is the publisher?

My first book, Keep the Light Burning, has just been published by Brucedale Press, Canada.

Give us a short summary of your article.

Will Lindsay, son of the Point Clark lightkeeper, is nearly thirteen—old enough to put down hay, drive the old horse for the school-day run, and catch wild turkeys with his friend, Angus. When his father leaves for town, Will takes responsibility for the light. He has practised in the lantern room during calm weather, but the deadliest storm to ever hit the great lakes is blowing. Ice smears the windows through which the beacon must shine to aid ships in danger on Lake Huron.

Tell us a bit about your path to publishing, from idea to submission to published book.

For me, this path has stretched over nine years: seven months to write the first draft and seven years to rewrite it. Had I given up anywhere along the road, I wouldn't be enjoying this time right now. During these years, I wrote in several other genres like blogs, poetry, children's picture books. Some years, months would go by before I would revisit the manuscript and tweak it here and there. At a writers' conference, I connected with a gal who is an editor who helped me edit the story. I sent it to a publisher who didn't reject it outright in 2016 when I first sent the story out. She is the publisher at Brucedale Press who gave me the contract. And now the book is published!

How long have you been writing?

I have to admit that I've been writing for fifty years. Gulp. I started writing songs, then dramas, a children's musical, articles, blogs, and then: a book.

What's your favorite genre to write and why?
I really don't have a favourite genre. It's easier to write novels and plays than children's picture books but I love the process of every one of them.

What ICL courses have your taken?
I've completed three courses. The first was Writing for Children and Teens, the second, Creating and Selling Short Stories and Articles and the final course was Writing and Selling Children's Books.

How has taking our course helped your writing and/or career?

I would never have known how to proceed without the instruction I received through the courses, particularly the course in writing the novel. The instructors were so helpful as well as encouraging.

Have any of your class assignments been published?

Yes, an article titled, "In the Beginning, God Created Gannets," was published by Nature Friend magazine in the September 2010 issue. I also received an award for that article from The Word Guild.

Do you have a favorite writing tip you'd like to share?

My favorite writing tip at the moment is, don't give up. If you give up you will never be published, If you stay with it, keep at it, it's just a matter of time and you will be published.

If you could travel back in time and give yourself one piece of writing advice, how far back would you go, and what would you tell yourself?

My writing advice would be to always enjoy the process.

Please tell us the best or most valuable thing you learned from your experience with ICL.

The most valuable thing I learned by taking courses from ICL was that I could do it. The instructors were so encouraging and their editing of my submissions were always given in a positive, educational manner.

Now that you've written your first book, what are your plans for writing other books?
I've started research for the next segment of time in the life of my tweenage characters. I want to find out what kind of people they grow into and what happens next in their lives.


Cori Mordaunt studied fashion at Ryerson, English at the University of Toronto, and graduated in library techniques from Seneca College. While studying at The Institute of Children’s Literature, Cori wrote the first draft of her now published historical fiction novel, Keep the Light Burning. She is currently researching material for her next book.


To start your own path to the Winners' Circle, show us a sample of work and let us help you become the writer you want to be. Click here.

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