Inspirational words from our SCBWI QLD illustrators

A post from Helen Ross, SCBWI Qld member.

As children’s writers we know the magic that books can weave – and their importance in a child’s literacy and language development. We love words and pictures and feel very contented spending endless hours playing with ideas. We love to play.  Sometimes our best work has come out of an idea that might have seemed silly to begin with. But after tossing in a mix of creativity, thought, play and flair, metamorphosis has occurred. And a wonderful picture or story has emerged glistening, dynamic and spirited. And we have had fun! Though it can be a little hard going at times.

However, many adults tend to lose of sense of play – especially with art.

As roving reporter during Brisbane’s One Word One Day (OWOD) 2012  illustrator event, each artist kindly offered me their words of inspiration to children – in relation to art.

The following pearls of wisdom are from the talented SCBWI QLD members who attended this event.

 ‘They have to play.  They have to be free to draw something even if they think it is bad.  Each time they draw something they improve.’   (Angela Sunde)

‘Unlike mathematics and some other subjects, in Art there are no errors, just a continuous experiment; no mistakes. So this is a good thing for children to remember when they draw – you just keep learning.’   (Lucia Masciullo)

 ‘Use nature as inspiration.  For example, the words wind and rain can be very inspirational as they can be interpreted in so many different ways.  Kids can use nature as inspiration.’   (Peter Taylor)

Paint with your heart.’   (Lynn Priestley)

Great words of wisdom! Now go have fun!

Please feel free to offer your own inspirational thoughts in the comment section.

To enter writing competitions or not? That is the question….

Another post from Taryn Bashford, SCBWI Qld member.

Do you face this dilemma? Trying to get novels published and spending too much spare time wondering if one should enter competitions?  Is this a useful way to spend one’s writing time or is it a hurdle to distract from writing a new novel? Another delaying tactic? 

I’m aware how writers can get lost and take refuge in research for their books and delay actually writing the novel itself.  Yet everyone says if you win a competition it’s great to add to your CV; yet it distracts me from writing my novel – and so the vicious circle develops.

Having recently come to my own conclusion about this question, I thought I’d share it with you. 

I decided to enter a few competitions and so spent some time letting my mind wander and hover over new story ideas and concepts, new characters and their friends, new beginnings and new endings. It became a great way to exercise the imagination, to flex that writing muscle in the brain and free my mind to write something that wasn’t going to become a year-long project. I was able to experiment, play with tenses, with dialogue and different endings without the worry that if I did a re-write, there were 30,000 words or more to go through. This ability to freely experiment was of benefit to me as I have learnt which styles work for me. 

Taryn Bashford

The most surprising benefit, though, was it lead to a concept for my next novel. As I was writing and formulating the characters and plot for a 4,000 word short story competition, my mind grabbed the idea and ran away with it. I couldn’t stop it flying off on different tangents, collecting new chapters, new characters, new tension and climaxing moments and suddenly I had a whole YA novel in my head itching to be written.

 So I entered the competition but whilst I await the results I have a whole new novel to write. 

Leading Illustrators’ Auction for Indigenous Literacy

As facilitator and roving reporter for the Brisbane One Word One Day (OWOD)  illustrator event held on 11 May at the ABC Studios (South Bank), SCBWI Qld author and blogger, Helen Ross, gives us an update on the auction details scheduled for 25 September 2012.

Earlier this year a host of Australia’s best known and highly acclaimed artists (ASA and non-ASA members) created art for ONE WORD ONE DAY to raise funds for the Indigenous Literacy Foundation (ILF) to help disadvantaged kids in the remotest parts of Australia.

Artists had three hours to create a picture based on an inspirational word that the ASA released in the morning.

And there were many SCBWI Qld artists participating in the Brisbane OWOD event. What talent we have!  – Lucia Masciullo, Lynn Priestley, Angela Sunde,  Peter Taylor …

So now for the drum roll …..

The Australian Society of Authors, in partnership with the ABC and Micador will auction the 101 original artworks by these leading artists including Oscar-winning creator and illustrator Shaun Tan, Children’s Book Laureate Alison Lester and internationally recognised artist, Alison Jane Rice.

Tuesday 25 September, 6pm – 8pm
ABC Studios, 700 Harris St, Ultimo NSW
Registration essential – RSVP   events@asauthors.org

Bid in person, by phone or absentee http://www.onewordoneday.com.au/auction
Visit www.onewordoneday.com.au

Times: 10am – 2.30pm
Cost: $15
Bookings: Bookings essential – book online below or phone 1800 257 121 or (02) 9211 1004

To view all the fabulous artwork, click on:

www.onewordoneday.com.au

BUT before you go. All SCBWI illustrators please put the 2013 date in your diary. It really was a fun day!

Brisbane                  Wed 15 May 2013, 10am – 2.30pm
Code:
13OWOD05B

For other OWOD 2013 event dates, click here.

And, to find out more about  Brisbane’s fabulous  OWOD 2012 event, click here.

And if you want to bid, or know of anyone who might be interested, please kindly pass this information on.

The 2012 Byron Bay Writers Festival … impressions from a children’s writer

SCBWI Qld author and blogger, Taryn Bashford blogs on her experiences at the recent Annual Byron Bay Writers Festival. Visit her blog or website to find out more about Taryn.

Beautiful Byron Bay (image courtesy of the Byron Bay Community Markets)

Firstly, I went along as a volunteer and I highly recommend doing this if you want to save the entry fee because it’s lots of fun, you meet lots of people and you feel like you’re a real part of the Festival. I was a host and had 8 writers assigned to me (I was like their PA for a day). Just contact them via the website.

Anyhow, this was my first visit and the general impression was that the visitors loved it, thought there was a good breadth of topics and some great authors there. I was surprised at the number of children and YA authors in attendance; Morris Gleiztman, Andy Griffiths, Isobelle Carmody, Shamini Flint and Sarah Brennan to name a few.

From the standpoint of a writer though, there was very little there in terms of learning your craft. The only session catering for us writers was the pitch session (45 mins for 6 pre-determined people to do a 5 min pitch) but this was interesting as ever with publishers from Harper Collins and Harlequin Teen.

I have to say the most exciting day for me was the Sunday as it was Children’s Day. To see a whole marquee full of 5 to 14 year olds, all there to listen to authors, buy their books and get them autographed, was very exciting. We should thank these authors for attending because they are creating so much interest in reading books and that will certainly benefit those of us wishing to publish in this market – and their own sales of course!

All in all, a great venue, some brilliant authors to talk to and listen to but more geared to readers than writers.

EXHIBITION: JOURNEY OF A BOOK: Celebrating books-from idea to publication

A SPECIAL EXHIBITION at the Brisbane Square Library, George St, Brisbane city Level 2 … 13th July to August 30th

Showcasing the work of many of Queensland Children’s Authors and Illustrators – organised by the SCBWI Qld team and the Brisbane City Council events organiser, Michelle Richards.

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The Exhibition launch was held on Friday 13th July 2012 and will run until the end of August. Many supporters turned up to the launch and celebrated with the authors and illustrators.

The exhibition was launched by Jenny Stubbs, organiser of the Ipswich Children’s Literary Festival, co-ordinate the Ipswich District Teacher-Librarian Network, president of Book Links Qld and passionate supporter of children’s books and their creators.

Authors’ work is displayed in individual glass cases, and illustrators’ framed images hang on large wall spaces.

Each exhibit demonstrates how authors create books – from the first glimmer of an idea to the finished product. They feature artifacts, photographs, images, first drafts, final manuscripts and the book itself.

Featured authors:

David McRobbie – Vinnie’s War

Josie Montano – Little Penguin

Judy Paulson – Baby Tawnies

Kim Michelle Toft – Recipe for Perfect Planet Pie

Nette Hilton – The Web

Tina Marie Clark – African Orphans

Peter Taylor – Calligraphy

Katherine Battersby – two Squish Rabbit books

Pam Rushby – The Horses Didn’t Come Home

Sheryl Gwyther – Secrets of Eromanga

Jennifer Poulter – Mending Lucille

Prue Mason – Camel Rider

Angela Sunde – Pond Magic

Featured Illustrator:

Peter Allert

Lynn Priestley

Anil Tortop

Ozan Tortop

Lynelle Westlake