I’m really excited to be waking up in Sydney this morning! I’m here for the SCBWI Australia conference, and to meet my wonderful agent Essie White from Storm Literary Agency who has traveled from the US. It’s going to be an amazing few days of catching up with friends, meeting new people and getting to know other authors and illustrators.
This week I’ve been reading the hundreds of submission that have come in for Write On, Issue 51, and I’ve been blown away by the standard and variety of writing. There are some fantastic young writers out there! It’s going to be extremely tough choosing which pieces to include in this issue. With the theme ‘Fun and Games’ I have particularly enjoyed those pieces which have made me laugh, or pieces that have looked at sport and games in a different light. I’m so excited about this issue of Write On – it’s going to be amazing!
I’m so excited about National Poetry Day coming up this Friday, it’s a chance to celebrate all things poetic and it’s particularly exciting this year as the School for Young Writers will be running its first ever Poetry Pentathlon. Think poetry class meets game show meets everyone wins. It’s going to be a lot of fun!
I’m really excited this week to take on my first distance-learning student through the School for Young Writers. I’ve known this particular young writer for a number of years and had the pleasure of teaching her as part of our workshops last year. I just can’t wait to get started.
Delighted to announce that I’m now represented by Essie White of Storm Literary Agency. So excited to become part of this amazing group of authors and illustrators.
I’m really thrilled to hear that I’ve had two pieces accepted into ‘Bonsai’ – a forthcoming anthology of New Zealand Flash Fiction to be published by the University of Canterbury Press in 2018. The two pieces ‘Schrodinger’s Cat’ and ‘What the Science Tells Us’ are both pieces which I initially wrote for Flash Frontier’s science issue so it’s great to see them having a new lease of life in this lovely anthology. And I’m in great company – I’ve heard from some of the other authors included in this book – there’s going to be some amazing writing in there!
Had a fantastic Sunday evening at the Hell Fire Club poetry session in Lyttelton. Amazing to hear so many talented, local poets all in one place. This was my first time doing open mic poetry so I was honestly a bit nervous. I’ve ready plenty of fiction to audiences before but have never really been happy with my poems. So, it was with some trepidation that I stepped up to the mic….
Fun evening, met some great new people, and I’ve been invited back as a guest poet next time!
On Thursday next week, some of Christchurch’s brightest and bravest young poets will take to the mic to perform their work for National Poetry Day. And I’m thrilled that some of them are my students.
In the build up to this celebration of poetry, I’ve been doing lots of work on poems with my classes. It’s great fun to explore concepts such as rhyme and rhythm, which children’s poetry does so well. National Poetry Day, is also an opportunity for all of us parents and teachers to read more poetry to our children. Not just the funny, bouncing rhymes of childhood, but poetry that explores feelings, ideas, places and things. That way we can help inspire the next generation of poets.
Sometimes there are those magic moments. I had a lovely phone call on Monday evening from a parent of a student in one of my writing classes. He phoned to let me know what a HUGE difference my class was making to his daughter’s writing. She’s gone from being a reluctant writer to writing three books over the last school holidays. Yay!
Today, Dr Jane Goodall is in Christchurch. She has been a hero of mine for many years and today, at last, I get to hear her speak. Can’t wait!