Beats and Zebras
Owner: Merv Ehrich
Jubilee Medal Awarded to ISDI
Eyes in Norwegian
Speak out on Blues Eyes
Stand on Blue Eyes
Chronicles, Part 1
New ISDI Scandinavia Web Site
Dog Teams in Iqaluit
ISDs in Museum Exhibit
first Nations.... first Dogs
First Novel Published
Seeking to Answer
the Wrong Question
Edition: Imaged and distributed by the IPL
students of the Ulluriaq School,
The Fan Hitch,
Journal of the Inuit Sled Dog International,
is published four times a year. It is
available at no cost online at:
Print subscriptions: in Canada $20.00, in
USA $23.00, elsewhere $32.00 per year,
postage included. All prices are in Canadian
dollars. Make checks payable in Canadian
dollars only to "Mark Brazeau", and send to
Mark Brazeau, Box 151 Kangiqsualujjuaq QC
J0M 1N0 Canada. (Back issues are also
available. Contact Sue Hamilton.)
Hitch welcomes your letters, stories,
comments and suggestions. The editorial staff
reserves the right to edit submissions used
of The Fan Hitch are protected
by international copyright laws. No
photo, drawing or text may be reproduced
in any form without written consent.
Webmasters please note: written consent
is necessary before linking this site to
yours! Please forward requests to Sue
Hamilton, 55 Town Line Rd., Harwinton,
Connecticut 06791, USA or firstname.lastname@example.org
Inuit Sled Dog International
Sled Dog International (ISDI) is a consortium of
enthusiasts whose goal is the preservation of
this ancient arctic breed in its purest form as
a working dog. The ISDI's efforts are
concentrated on restoring the pure Inuit Dog to
its native habitat. The ISDI's coordinators
welcome to your comments and questions.
ISD Enthusiast Publishes First
Scott Miller of Hinckley, Minnesota,
USA has just published
his first novel,
Signs of Winning
F.H. So, are you a musher?
S.M. My wife Terry and I have eighteen dogs: one
two Alaskan Huskies and fifteen Inuit Sled Dogs. The main
dogs get run
over a thousand miles a season.
F.H. Is Signs of Winning about ISDs then?
S.M. No, the protagonist starts with Malamutes and
ends up with
Alaskans. She gets into mid-distance racing and looses
sight of everything
except winning. There's a fair amount of racing and
training and running
dogs in it, but it's mostly about the relationships
between the characters
and how they handle the situations they find themselves
F.H. How much of the story is based on things that
happened to you?
S.M. Most of the things that are painful have
happened to me
or my wife. A lot of the embarrassing things have actually
us too. The part with the black lab at the finish line
really did happen
except it was a Malamute during a training run. I was so
proud of them
I had to include it in the book.
F.H. Have you written other books?
S.M. I'm currently putting the finishing touches on
young adult novels. One is about a young boy who finds an
ISD that belongs
to a neighbor that has a reputation for mistreating dogs.
His parents say
he has to take her back but he's afraid of what will
happen to her if he
does. The other book is about a young girl whose family
comes into possession
of a pair of wolf puppies and the problems that arise. I'm
around an idea of a young adult who runs a big race like
Race to the Sky.
I haven't decided how they get into the race or if they
might race ISDs.
I have a couple of other books I'm working on but they
have nothing to
do with canids.
F.H. What made you decide to write a book?
S.M. Oh, I went through a poetry phase and a short
I've written a lot of songs even though I'm a horrible
singer and only
a slightly better guitar player. But ever since college
I've wanted to
write a novel. I have about five half finished novels
stuffed away somewhere.
F.H. Why were you able to finally finish one?
S.M. I gave up trying to write the great American
novel. I think
writing for young adults allowed me to tell a story
without having to worry
about whether or not a college professor would find
universal truths and
lasting value in it. Kids just want to have fun reading.
Signs of Winning
by Scott Miller
reviewed by Tina Portman
Signs of Winning is story about dogsleds, huskies,
ice hooks and dog booties. But mainly it's a story about
Kaitlin, a deaf girl with a passion for dogs.
As I think back to my childhood and my shocking capacity
and clumsy manipulation, I think Miller has succeeded
wonderfully at making
Kaitlin real. Kaitlin is not an angel, yet she's
thoroughly likable. She's
not a disabled wallflower, yet she doesn't always win.
and humor ("I saw Joe Workman. He was doing the deaf cheer
and as near
as I could tell asking for ice cream."), make Signs of
In Signs of Winning, Kaitlin struggles to define
what makes her
a winner and what makes her a loser. That's not easy for a
deaf girl in
a hearing world, or for a child who feels cheated by her
and resents her father's detachment.
Kaitlin is thrown more challenges in the story, but she
also gains some
friends. George, who knows sign language, helps Kaitlin
train her young
sled dogs. Her new best friend Sarah, is deaf and (as she
and wants to get multiple body piercings and a tattoo of a
dove and an
olive branch on her ankle.
Kaitlin is an aspiring sled dog racer. In the story, she
from the three-mile Snowflake Days race with her two
to the 150-mile Moccasin Run with her newly trained team
of six Alaskan
huskies. It's through sled dog racing, with help from her
friends and family,
that Kaitlin learns that being a winner isn't about
crossing the finish
Signs of Winning is a good story. It doesn't just
zoom to the
finish, it lures with twists and turns. In the end, it's a
Signs of Winning; 192 pages paperback, for ages 12
and up, ISBN
0-9681675-5-1, US $9.00 plus shipping, Cdn $12.00 plus
shipping from Whippoorwill
Press, Box 206, Inwood, MB R0C 1P0 Canada, also available