Friday, June 06, 2014

How to find posts that interest you

The last guest author's post was published on Monday to complete this online literary festival -  42 posts altogether and a baker's dozen of brilliant guest authors. That's a lot of good writing - which mention, discuss and feature lots of books, also raising lots of interesting ideas for us to think about and consider. 

To make it easier to find posts you find interesting, I've listed all the featured guest posts here with brief descriptions of the topics covered:

Kids' Lit Quiz 

Welcome by Wayne Mills
Team Australia - Canberra Grammar School
Team Canada - Royal St George's College, Toronto
Team South Africa - St John's Preparatory School, Johannesburg
Team Singapore - Clementi Primary School
Team USA  - Sedgwick Middle School, Connecticut (this is a link to an newspaper article)
Tena Koutou Katoa - New Zealand Update
Cornwall 2014

We also got to meet the some of the winners of the Phendulani Literary Quiz, an extension of the Kids' Lit Quiz to under-resourced schools in South Africa. Phendulani schools are always looking to build their school libraries - if you have books you'd like to donate to a good cause, please send them to the address given in the post on Team South Africa.

Guest Authors' Posts

The 2014 Australian Children's Laureate, Jackie French, started this month's literary adventure by writing about some of the places books can take us - Surfing Strange Tsunamis is a giant wave of ideas and information about the value of reading.

I was reminded of Isobelle Carmody's atmospheric photo essay, The Story Road. It's definitely worth revisiting The Story Road after you've read Surfing Strange Tsunamis.

Reading Up: Why it's important to stretch yourself by Tania McCartney is about challenging yourself as a reader. Using the example of the children's classic, The Magic Faraway Tree by Enid Blyton, Tania shows why it is never a good idea to "dumb down" books for kids.

In Research? But I write Fiction! Sherryl Clark explains why it's important for an author to research the background to a story before starting the creative part of the project.

Pamela Rushby tells us about her work writing historical fiction, Why I Love Writing History; where she gets her ideas and how she does her research.

In Food Glorious Food  Goldie Alexander explains how children's authors often use descriptions of food (or its absence) to illustrate and develop plots, settings and characters. Delicious!

Sally Murphy writes about sad themes in children's literature in her guest post, Why So Sad?

In Living the Dream, Barry Jonsberg tells us how he fulfilled his childhood dream of becoming a writer by...writing. A very funny account of one writer's start in the book publishing world.

Dianne Wolfer writes of her love of writing historical fiction in Small moments in big pictures.

Jess Black looks at the elements of successful book series in What Makes a Book Series Seriously Good?

Bruce Pascoe's lyrical and atmospheric post, Canoes, reminds us of the significant (but often unrecognised) contribution Indigenous Australians have made to the landscape of this country.

In Are you a true Dr Frankenstein? Josie Montano explains how she develops and builds her characters. If you're interested in this subject, also have a look at Charlotte Calder's guest post (in May 2013), Are you a real life thief? about using your real life experiences in your stories.

Andy Griffiths tells us how he became a writer in his very funny post, How I got started as a writer.

In Conversations about Australian Identity, Anita Heiss tells us about the way various conversations about Australian identity have impacted her life as a writer and her role as an ambassador for the Indigenous Literacy Day and Books in Homes literacy initiatives.


Don't forget to check out the book reviews by kids listed on the left sidebar - great reviews and great books too. Also, the Friday recaps contain news, information and links to other book sites.

Some other highlights from our first year online:

May 2013: First Literary Festival

You can find all of the articles written by our guest authors at the first link and find books they recommend as good reads at the second link:

Guest authors' posts
Guest authors' book recommendations

South Africa 2013

Some of the fun and excitement of our adventures in southern Africa at and around the very exciting 2013 Kids' Lit Quiz world final in Durban:

South Africa 2013 by Marj Brown
There and Back Again
The Big Five
Prisoner 44664: master of his fate, captain of his soul

November 2013: Second Literary Festival

You can find all of the articles written by our guest authors at the first link and find books they recommend as good reads at the second link:

Guest authors' posts
Guest authors' book recommendations

Kids' Lit Quiz 2014 Australian competition

These descriptions of the 2014 Australian competition will make you feel like you were there:

Stripes and Stars: Queensland heat
Kings and Queens, Insects and Mice: NSW regional heat (Orange)
Cannibalism and other stories: ACT heat
The Day the Kids' Lit Quiz came to south-west Sydney: Sydney heat
2014 Australian Final

Favourites from 2013

Here (in no particular order) are a just a few of my favourite guest posts from 2013, together the most popular book reviews by kids and the most popular guest post, a small fraction of the wide range of wonderful writing we've been lucky enough to share with our readers over the last year:

On Killing your Characters by Anthony Eaton
Windows and Mirrors by Erica Wagner (a reflection on 25 years in children's publishing)
Maus: my favourite illustrated book by Adrienne Doig
A Reader's Story by Finegan Kruckemeyer
The Squid and the Whale by Rod Clement
Boy Soldier by David Mussared
Nowhere Boys by CS McMullen
Book Review - The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness
Book Review - Mortal Engines by Philip Reeves

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