Friday, November 12, 2010

Pigeons Projects: fundraiser at Trades Hall

Pigeons Projects Children's Literacy Projects is something rare and special to emerge onto the educational and literary scene. The creators behind the project, Lachlan Carter and Jenna Williams, are indefatigable in their drive and vision to support young people in developing a passion for reading and writing.

In this round, over 20 Melbourne based authors have been paired with students from Footscray City PS. The result will be a published anthology of brilliant short stories to be launched in December.

The fundraiser was organised and MCd for Pigeons by Michaela McGuire. Special guests included Tony Wilson, DJ Jess McGuire. Michael williams and Andrew McDonald.

Pictured at the mic are Jenna and Lach. I have so much respect for these two and their abilities. They are awesome and worth all the support you can offer.

You can now donate on line

YABBA and George Ivanoff

The Young Australian Best Book Awards conducted its 2010 ceremony at Bayside College Williamstown Campus on Wednesday 10 November. This was my first YABBA. Greeted by friendly and enthusiastic Bayside students, we were ushered into the Hall - authors, publishers and a couple of hundred students from all around Melbourne.

There were awards for writers young and old. You can read the winning tales on the YABBA website and if you click on creator's profiles you can read about some of Australia's favourite children's authors.

After the ceremony the authors were invited to sit at tables arranged in the library, sign copies of their books and chat to the students.

My table buddy was George Ivanoff. How lucky was I?
Turns out that George is a fellow Pigeons author but most excitingly, he has a wonderful new book on the shelves, Gamer's Quest. Check out the website - George has raised the bar in web presentation!

Thanks YABBA and Bayside for a fabulous day. Writing can be an isolating business - it's terrific to get out and about and meet the readers and other writers.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

The Village: 4 - 7 November

Back at The Village Festival ...

... this time telling stories with story buddy Matteo in a yurt - all the way from Mongolia and still smelling of goat.

On Friday night we had a packed yurt and offered tales from Germany, Thailand and the Mountain Ash covered slopes of Mt Dandenong.

The weather was perfect, the people were perfect, the yurt was perfect.

Deep and sincere thanks to The Village people who make it possible for artists like myself and Matteo to practice our craft in such a magical setting.

The Village:

Newport Artists Market : The Story Space

The Newport Artist's Market supports performers.

As well as the jewellery makers, visual artists, clothes designers, chefs, pastry cooks and wine makers, there are musicians and storytellers - both authors and spoken tale weavers.

There is a need to provide something for children on trading days and the Market is the perfect place for intimate storytelling. When I take to the chair, I have a wonderful sense of being part of an ancient tradition - stories alongside food and wine - the staples of a good life.

Of course being November, it's the racing season and time to tell the story of Phar Lap. There are some who still confuse zebras with thoroughbred racehorses - but I think it makes for a heartwarming photo.

Big thanks to the Substation for their support of artists of all kinds

The Substation is a not for profit association whose aims are to transform the Newport Substation building and create a community arts centre which will provide a venue for the cultural development of the local community.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Phar Lap the wonder horse: Museum Victoria

My book Phar Lap the wonder horse , published in 2008, still sells like hot cakes. The suit I bought for the launch still fits and the folk still wipe away the tears even though they know the ending to the story.

Today the museum was packed to the rafters - it was an exercise in queueing. I queued to get in, queued for a cuppa, queued for the loo.

We had a crowd in the Melbourne Gallery where Phar Lap's skeleton is being exhibited alongside the mount. The Museum had a table of horse activities, a big screen showing the the live action at Flemington Race Course and I was scheduled for two performances.

It's wonderful to see so many people exploring the wonderful galleries and exhibitions.

Here's hoping the suit will still fit in 2011.


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