Well, what a time it has been. I dragged my poor SO out of bed at 5.30am last friday morning so he could drop me at the airport in time for my 6.30am flight to Christchurch (thank you honey, you are a peach). I almost didn't get on as the machine wouldn't accept my e-ticket and the queue to sort things out was impressive. The two gents in front of me had tried to get to Christchurch the night before and failed because of fog. They'd come back via Wellington. Through luck we all got on the plane in time and flew down south to be told just outside of Christchurch that we might not land because of fog and would probably head to Wellington. Mother Nature eh? The power of water vapour over invention, engineering, and sophisticated instrument landing systems.
Well the pilots were good at their job and we landed. Phew. because I had a date with some very cool children from Hammersley School at Shirley Library. I had breakfast with fab book designer Kim Dovey and met up with book-fiend and brilliant blogging librarian Zac Harding. In the afternoon I kept Kim company while she completed her preparations for the Storylines Family Day on Sunday.
I had Saturday to myself. My accommodation was at the north end of the city and I took a wander round to see what nature had done to Christchurch. She'd been pretty mean. I'd seen a lot of images on tv and in the papers but it gives you a deeper level of understanding to see it for yourself. It is broken and I admire and respect all those people who have lived through it all. It made me sad and it would be hard living with that kind of sadness every day.
On Sunday wonderful fellow writer, Jane Bloomfield and I walked down to the Catholic Cathedral College for the Christchurch Storylines Family Day where we met up with our third Kiwiwrite4kidz musketeer, award winning author Leonie Agnew. What an excellent day we had: meeting with keen readers who checked out the books of our kiwiwrite4kidz members, talking with keen writers and meeting other folk from the writing community. It was very exciting for me to meet Trevor Agnew and Bill Nagelkerke and his wife. And its always wonderful to see so many families coming out to support their children's love of books and reading.
On Monday I got to visit two Christchurch schools, Redcliffs and Redwood Primary, both filled with enthusiastic students and teachers. I wished I had more time at both schools. At the end of the day I got the chance to meet my Canterbury University tutor and then it was time for me to catch the plane home.
Tuesday was my first visit as author-in-residence at New Windsor School. I got a fantastic welcome and spent the morning talking with the whole school and then had the chance to chat to some smaller groups and meet with their bookclub who had started with my novel Jack the Viking. What a great school. And wednesday night I got to read some of my books at their Milo Storytime. I dressed up in my jammies, dressing gown and slippers and had a lovely evening. Thank you so much New Windsor. I'm looking forward to my next visit in September.
This coming weekend I am running a writing workshop on plotting for older children at the National Library and Sunday I will be at the Auckland Storylines Family Day. I'm really looking forward to meeting more keen book fans and having the chance to talk about YA books at the panel discussion on Sunday afternoon. I hope I get to meet you there. See you then :)
Educational Resource: A Winter's Day in 1939
- Educational Resource: The Were-Nana
- Educational Resource: The Half Life of Ryan Davis
- Educational Resource: Made With Love
- Educational Resource: The House That Went to Sea
- Educational Resource: A Winter's Day in 1939
- Educational Resource: While You Are Sleeping
- Educational Resource: The Song of Kauri
- Educational Resource: Fuzzy Doodle
- Book List - Complete List of my Publications