Christmas wishlist – Christmas books

Our Advent calendar is a white wooden frame with twenty-four little doors, each with a different Christmas picture on it. It’s about ten years old now, and some of the doors are a little wonky. I created a collection of shipping tags with a Christmas stamp and a suggestion of something Christmasy to do. The… Continue reading Christmas wishlist – Christmas books

September holidays writing workshops for kids

Photo credit: Mandy Couzens Do you have any imaginative and creative children or grandchildren who would like to spend a few hours in the holidays writing a story? I’m running four writing workshops for kids in the September/October school holidays. I’ve presented these workshops in primary schools but this is the first time I’ve run… Continue reading September holidays writing workshops for kids

The extremely inconvenient adventures of Bronte Mettlestone – book review

I read a lot of fabulous books over the summer holidays, and this book, The extremely inconvenient adventures of Bronte Mettlestone by Jaclyn Moriarty, was one of my favourites. Miss 11 received it for Christmas, and demolished it over a day or two. And yes, Jaclyn Moriarty is Liane Moriarty’s sister – the latter wrote… Continue reading The extremely inconvenient adventures of Bronte Mettlestone – book review

Christmas book ideas for 5-8 year-olds

For 5-8 year-old readers, I have a list of book series. Kids at this age love to read books again and again. They’ll begin with listening to an adult read the whole book, then they might take it in turns to read a few pages, then they can read it to themselves. Kids are avid collectors,… Continue reading Christmas book ideas for 5-8 year-olds

Christmas book ideas for 9-12 year-old girls

It’s seven and a half weeks until Christmas – gulp! In order to make your Christmas shopping a little easier, I am putting together a few lists of books to buy for different age groups over the next few weeks. A book is an easy thing to buy – it doesn’t take up a lot… Continue reading Christmas book ideas for 9-12 year-old girls

Carole Poustie – author interview

I met author Carole Poustie at a meet-up for the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI). It was my first time there, and I didn’t know anyone. Carole very kindly chatted to me and introduced me to other writers and illustrators. Her second middle-grade book, In the dark, has just been released. It follows… Continue reading Carole Poustie – author interview

Three strong, original books

I’ve been reading quite a few wonderful books lately so I thought I’d bundle a few together in a review. I have so many library books teetering in a pile on my bedside table that I’m worried I’ll be decapitated during the night! I’ve reviewed an adult novel by a well-known Australian writer, a young… Continue reading Three strong, original books

Van Gogh – ‘arrive at the truthful’

Last weekend – because there was no sport in the school holidays – hooray! – we all went to the Vincent van Gogh exhibition at the National Gallery of Victoria. It was beautiful and crowded. Beautiful because the paintings were amazing. I loved seeing the brush strokes and the vivid colours. I must admit, I… Continue reading Van Gogh – ‘arrive at the truthful’