The D Word – Diversity at the AAA

Well, the dust has well and truly settled on the The CBCA  Anticipate, Appreciate, Applaud (AAA) shortlist announcement in March this year, and in my mind, the gold has sifted to top to be extracted here in this post. The day started with Freya Blackwood speaking on ‘Escape to the everyday’ and the adventures that can be had in the seemingly ordinary moments of life – a theme many of her books pursue – before receiving the IBBY honour book for illustration award. The morning panelists spoke abou...
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So- how did you go?

At the beginning of last year I posted this matrix of things to do spread throughout the year. I think it’s a good strategy for everyone to review their goals from time to time, and when better than at the beginning of the year? So, how did you go with these goals and what were the results for your efforts? Here’s how I went: Subscribe: I discovered Jen Storer’s vlog Q&Q Fridays – invaluable information delivered her in her warm, fun, quirky way. Just a delight! Join:  I join...
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Reflecting on 2016 with the JWFK Team

2016 has been a tremendously eventful year on the blog, with establishing the Directory, a cascade of amazing interviewees and guest posters, and invaluable tips and news updates made available. And I couldn't have done it all without the support and dedication of my wonderful team of bloggers and the Australian kidlit community. So, thank you! I feel blessed to be a part of this always-inspiring world. To celebrate, a few of us Just Write For Kids bloggers got together to reflect personally ...
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In the Presence of Giants

The title of this article might seem a misnomer given the physical stature of both Margaret Wild and Julie Vivas, however there is no doubt about their giant status in the picture book world. It was an absolute pleasure to hear them speak in conversation with Belinda Murrell at the CBCA Northern Sydney sub-branch Christmas party on the last day of November 2016. Margaret’s writing has long been a touchstone of mine with her exquisite use of words and her perfect emotional pitch. I return agai...
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Deborah Kelly – Star Ascending Part 2

In Part 1 of this interview with Deb Kelly, we found out how she got started on the road to writing books for children. This week we focus more on how the books came to be picked up for publication and the setbacks and encouragements along the way: Deb, can you tell us the path your books have taken to be picked up by publishers? Is it similar/different for each? My name was pulled out of a hat to pitch a story idea to a panel of publishers at the Kids and YA festival one year at the NSWWC...
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Ten Interesting Facts: CBCA book of the year awards 2016

This week my local CBCA Sub-branch listened to an address by Book of the Year judge, Cathie Tasker about the awards and judging process. These are ten items of interest I thought I'd share from this talk: 1. It is important to note that the CBCA Book of the year awards are judged for literary merit, not popularity or enjoyment etc. (There are other awards judging other criteria, eg. Inkies, ABIA, Readings Children's Book Prize, KOALA awards etc). And the Key Word is outstanding literary merit...
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Writers Action Matrix

I thought the beginning of the year was an apt time to put together a visual writer's action matrix for those who want to progress on their writing path this year. These are all actions that have progressed my writing, my understanding of the industry and my sense of belonging to a supportive community of writers, which in turn has enhanced both my writing and understanding! Try to get through all the actions by the end of the year - you might even manage several of some actions. I'd love to ...
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It’s fun to play at the CBCA

One of the messages that has resounded loud and clear from the interviews with both Shelly Unwin and Lesley Gibbes' is the importance of developing contacts in the kid lit industry. One of the things Shelly and Lesley found invaluable were courses. Something that I have found invaluable is the Children's Book Council of Australia, affectionately known as the CBCA . It is through the CBCA, in fact, that I met both Lesley and Shelley. So I thought I would give a quick 5 reasons why its' fun to pla...
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It’s fun to play at the CBCA

One of the messages that has resounded loud and clear from the interviews with both Shelly Unwin and Lesley Gibbes' is the importance of developing contacts in the kid lit industry. One of the things Shelly and Lesley found invaluable were courses. Something that I have found invaluable is the Children's Book Council of Australia, affectionately known as the CBCA . It is through the CBCA, in fact, that I met both Lesley and Shelley. So I thought I would give a quick 5 reasons why its' fun to pla...
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