Yay! It’s Library Day!

Yay! It’s Library Day! is a picture book written by Australian author Aleesah Darlison published by Wombat Books and illustrated by students from all over Australia, who chosen to work on this project after an illustration competition. Aleesah Darlison has written over 36 books and is an award-winning author. She is currently touring Australia to launch Yay! It’s Library Day! and hold creative workshops at various schools and venues.

In this newly launched book, Oliver and Ivy wake up one morning, run into their parents bedroom and wake them with shouts of joy, “Yay! It’s Library Day!” As he promised, their dad takes them to the library and they scour the shelves looking for the perfect books. As they pick up and start reading a book, they get so absorbed in it that they feel it real and their whole world transforms around them. They see dancing elephants in tuxedos, go to fairytale lands, have ocean adventures, and fly across the sky on a magic carpet.

This book is a good read, exciting and easy to relate to. The experiences described in the book are those of every day readers, as we tend to let our imagination loose and build a whole world in our minds as we read.

I enjoyed being part of the launch event, hearing Aleesah talk about the way she writes, and looking at the students’ illustrations in the book. Our school is lucky to have one of our former student’s drawing featured in Yay! It’s Library Day! 


Creative Writing Workshop with Belinda Murrell

It was a cold July morning, a bit windy and cloudy. The minute we walked into Beecroft Children’s Bookshop the warm heat and the smell of newly printed books wrapped around us and welcomed us in the world of magic and knowledge.

We were all ready for a writing workshop for young children presented by Belinda Murrell who is a creative writer and the author of 27 books, collected in three different series: the LULU BELL series, the TIME-SLIP series and the SUN SWORD TRILOGY.

We were welcomed by the bookshop’s owner himself, Paul Macdonald, and lead to the classroom where Belinda was waiting with everything set up and ready to go.

We spent three compact hours reading fragments from Belinda’s books, learning about the structure of a story, planning our own stories and the characters in them, playing brainstorming games, and writing a few sketches of our own.

At the end of the workshop some of us presented one of our stories to the parents and grandparents present and Paul handed us certificates of participation.

It was a great day in the company of the inspiring Belinda Murrell, a day full of excitement and the magic of writing. I will remember it for a long time and I’m going to use the techniques that I learned in my own writing.




The Big Book Day Out – September 2015

Sunday, 13th of September I went to The Big Book Day Out event held at Garry Owen House (The NSW Writers’ Centre) in Rozelle.

There I saw some of my favourite authors, illustrators and participated in fun activities: book binding workshop, colouring in. I also enjoyed seeing some great books being launched, speaking to some of these awesome artists and nibbling on a tasty egg-and-bacon roll whilst listening to the tunes of Rozelle Public School Band.

The morning started with Jacqueline Harvey launching Alice-Miranda in the Alps book number 12 in the Alice Miranda series. She also read a fragment from Alice Miranda in the Alps and Clementine Rose and The Birthday Emergency.

Then I discovered the beautiful work of the talented illustrator Aura Parker. I also took a peek at her current project.

The lovely Margret from Ralph Lewis Bindery showed us three different ways to bind books. It was hard at the start, but we got the hang of it and enjoyed the experience.

I also got to talk to the lovely Belinda Murrell whose LULU BELL series I reviewed recently. It was great to meet her lovely sister, Kate Forsyth, also a very popular writer whose books I’m planning to start reading soon.

And I couldn’t leave without having a peek at Jess Black’s gorgeous crystals. She has just launched Eve and the Mermaid’s Tears, the third book in the KEEPER OF THE CRYSTALS series. And along with the book I received this surprise bag with beads inside to put together my own crystal necklace.

It was a lovely experience that I will remember for a long time.