Wednesday, February 18, 2009

My passion is oral storytelling with any age group and writing for younger children. I also enjoy writing short fiction for older age groups - especially historical fiction (for which I've won a few awards).

Imagine if you will an image of the book cover right here! A smiling aeroplance with pigeons sitting on its wings I'd really love to be able to market my children's stories to a publisher. Last year I self published a picture book: Connie and the Pigeons. I found that a very interesting and useful experience but not one that I can afford to repeat. Nonetheless, my book has sold quite well, I think. 400 copies in twelve months.

I completed an e-course on Writing for Children over the November-January period. I learned a lot I didn't previously know about, not so much on the writing side, but more importantly about how to find publishers - including kids' magazines. I've got two confirmed offers to publish some children's stories in September from Magazine editors - and I've started to prepare manuscripts for the emerging reader market. So this could be an exciting year.

Last weekend I was invited to conduct a storytelling elective as part of a Children's Workers' Training Day.The numbers were mind boggling! The organizers began with an expectation of 100-150 participants all told. By the actual day there were over 400 - and by the time they reached 430 they had to close off and put people on 'wait' lists. The numbers for my elective started at 25-30 and grew each day until it was 150. At which point the organisers decided to have two sessions. Even with 75 I had to rethink my strategy several times to cope with that number in a fairly confined space. I began with telling 'The Freedom Bird' (a story I'd found two versions of: one by David Holt and another by Elizabeth Gibson - I took what I liked best from each and then revamped it until it was my kind of story and added a piƱata that was split open at the end of the story to release an origami freedom bird for each of the participants to catch, take home and release.

The other thing I greatly enjoy is editing other people's writing. I've recently completed edits of two 100.000+ word novels. It's been a great experience. I am in awe of writers who can create that size manuscript - and maintain coherent thread between all the intricacies of plot and subplots.

Well, I'm done for now. It'll be interesting to see what the total blog looks like and whether anyone will read it.Bye for now!

1 comment:

  1. Hi Belka
    Your blog looks lovely and it is interesting to read about your work.
    Good luck with it all!