Friday, August 2, 2013

Fun and good times in August...

Okay so I invoked the Borg in my last post, but folks resistance is not futile. And the only thing that is truly final is death, so if you are still breathing (pretty much essential if you are currently reading these words) then you should keep trying. Keep trying to make your way in whatever crazy endeavour makes you happy and/or excited. As long as its not criminal. Or is bad for other people. But I digress. The reason we feel so awful when we are rejected or get a bad review is because we care so much about what have written. This is a good thing. If you care so much then you should keep at it. And don't forget that Jean-Luc did escape the Borg. There is a lesson in that for all of us (and for some of you that lesson will be to go Google Jean-Luc and the Borg).

I had a terrific time yesterday, first of all out at the NZ History Fair out at the Vodafone Event Centre in Manukau. I was invited by the folk from the Kresy Siberia Virtual Museum which is devoted to the experiences of those Poles deported, like my father and mother were, from the Kresy region of Poland to Soviet labour camps in World War 2. I learnt a lot from my two lovely hosts and came away feeling very motivated for my next book projekt. Then in the afternoon I hung out with the fabulous YA Bookclub at my local independent bookshop, Timeout Bookstore. I got to talk about A Winter's Day in 1939 with them and be impressed by how well read, smart and switched on they all were. I was especially interested in their thoughts on book series and the kinds of books they were reading. While their ages ranged through 10 to 14 their reading was much, much wider. And yes some teens do skip YA and go straight to adult books. This bookshop run bookclub is a tremendous initiative. Timeout Bookstore is a shining example of a bookshop that knows how to make itself an indispensable part of its customers' lives. It does interesting, fun things, goes the extra mile and makes the book buying experience such a positive one. Long may they continue. They'll certainly be getting my continued business.

In a few weeks I am visiting the lovely New Windsor Primary School where I was author in residence last year. I am looking forward to catching up with everyone there, reading some stories and getting dressed up in my onesie and drinking Milo for their Milo Storytime on the Wednesday. This evening of stories and song is another example of a great initiative to switch children on to books and reading. What a fun thing to do and i am so lucky to get to be a part of it.

In a few weeks the Storylines Festival will be upon us. Yay I love this time of year when we get to celebrate children's books with a whole crowd of children and children's book loving adults. I'm going to be a part of the Family Day in Auckland on Sunday August 18th and there are some very exciting things planned (a performance of one of my books, and a panel discussion - more details soon). I'm also running a writing workshop for children on Saturday the 17th at the National Library as party of the Storylines workshop programme and I have all sorts of writing tips, ideas and exercises to touch the magic wand to your writing. Come celebrate with us!

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