Adventures in Book Week 2015

WOW! That was a week!

I was exhausted come Friday afternoon but it was so so fun and yep, I’m already looking forward to next years!

This was my first Book Week as a published author / illustrator and although I have done several school visits before, I’ve never done a week on this kind of scale.

The week began Friday August 21 when I was invited to Palmyra Primary School where the students from Room 24 had turned my book into a play for their assembly. Of all the honours in all the world…! I even had a tear in my eye as I watched, it was fantastic and so well done. When the assembly was over we all headed back to their classroom and did some drawing…after answering many many questions about the book and about being an author and about drawing, that is!

Friday evening it was the Children’s Book Council of Australia (WA Branch) dinner to launch book week, hear who had won what (although most of us had eyes glued to twitter from around midday), and eat cake… Norman Jorgensen was the guest speaker and had us all enthralled and inspired.

Sunday it was my turn to be a guest speaker (yikes!) at the CBCA-WA “Make Your Own Story Book” awards ceremony. I have a ridiculous, almost paralysing, fear of public speaking so this was quite the challenge! Talk about throw yourself in at the deep end. The good news is though, I think I have now conquered that fear!

Some pics from Friday to Sunday…pictured in the main photo are: Meg McKinlay, Rebecca Newman, Norman Jorgensen, Deb Fitzpatrick, Jen Banyard, Renae Gibson and myself – yep, very serious literary people doing silly things with torches!


Next came Book Week and several school visits, about 500 students and driving to the wrong campus of one school but still making it on time to the right campus! Phew.

The week also included reading books, charcoal drawings, slide shows, sketchbooks, Olives, Pickles and a tasty cheeseboard in a library. Hopefully there were also a lot of laughs.

The great great thing about presenting to a group of children is that, if you can draw, you’re already awesome in their eyes! You walk into the room and they’re all already on your side so it only gets better from that moment on.

Some Book Week 2015 highlights:


Then of course, it wouldn’t be Book Week without costumes, right?! So on the last day of Book Week, before I headed off to another school, I was able to watch my son’s costume parade. This year he chose to dress as the penguin from Oliver Jeffers beautiful book “Lost and Found”…


And then Saturday came and it was all over  😦

So now I’m just going to end this (already quite long blog post) with a big thank you to ALL the teachers and librarians who make Book Week so special and so fun, for us visiting authors and illustrators, and for all the kids who take part. You’re all so awesome!

Also big thanks to CBCA-WA, The Literature Centre, Palmyra Primary School, Subiaco Primary School, John Septimus Roe Primary School, Helena Valley Primary School and my good good friend Narissa for picking up my son when the traffic was so bad that I wasn’t going to make it to collect him  from school on time.

You all deserve a big pat on the back! And cake.

Alrighty, see you later Book Week, until next year!