March 21, 2016

Technically, this is the second blog for the month, which is supposed to be a recap of the books I’ve reviews on Bay 93.9’s Catch Up. I have a brief review of two wonderful young adult novels I read this week, I promise, but first I wanted to talk school visits.

One of my favourite things about being a young adult and children’s writer, is visiting schools and working with students. Their creativity, willingness to trust and try new techniques is inspiring. Last week, along with other authors and illustrators, I visited two schools for different events.

A literary fest...or feast

 

The first was the Tucker Road, Bentleigh Primary School Literary Festival, organised by the incredible Robyn Donoghue and the team at Creative Net and Ford Street. A group of creative types ( a craze of creatives?) ran workshops on everything from scary stories to vanilla slices…I know, you had to be there. Adam Wallace – enough said!

 

 

This was my third visit to Tucker Road, so I was knew the students would be excited, well prepared and a delight to work with, and yet, I was still blown away by them and the event. Honestly, I visit many wonderful schools, but Tucker Road is the best prepared, most engaged and fun of all! I know, it’s a big call…but if you visit the next event and take a look at all the work the staff and students put into our visit, you’ll agree.

And what makes it such a fantastic experience? Robyn and her support team.

Robyn

Organiser extraordinaire – Robyn Donoghue. Tucker Road PS are so lucky to have her!

There is an added bonus to visiting Tucker Road PS. My gorgeous cousin’s children are there. That was special. For me, anyway.

Cousin love.

Charley and Ava showing the students my new book – Protest in Australia

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2016 Year 6, Tucker Road students’ motto.

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Andrew Plant and Adam Wallace, behaving! Meredith Costain – not so much! Also, Jude Rossell, Claire Saxby and Paul Collins.

Two days later, along the delightful Claire Saxby, Scot Gardner and I headed to Drysdale for a day of workshops with the St Ignatius Geelong Year 7 students. What an incredible bunch of young people! Thank you to Leonie and Rosemary to looking after us, and to the Year 7s for sharing their stories and writing, and making us laugh.

TWWRcov wil

 

 

 

 

 

 

Now to the quick reviews – the latest books by talented young adult writers, Scot Gardner and Will Kostakis.

In a nutshell – I loved them. Engaging, well developed and believable characters dealing with heart breaking events. The Way We Roll is grittier than The Sidekicks, and both deal with different situations and characters – but both are brilliant reads. Though you’d expect nothing less from these two accomplished writers. Congratulations Scot and Will. Love, love, love your work.

Please don’t make me pick a favourite! Although the goat may have it, but a shopping cart wheel.