Australia Illustrated and Australia Day

Wednesday, 25 January 2017

The modus operandi behind the creation of Australia Illustrated was to celebrate Australia in a way that's inclusive, is respectful of our First Australians, and celebrates diversity and multiculturalism.

I am happy to celebrate an 'Australia day' when the date can be changed, and we can honour, with equality, the original custodians of this land and the enriching ethnicities that have come to call this land home.

#peace #changethedate

In the meantime, it's so great to see the book going strong since its release last year. An author's greatest fear is that your book will melt into the ether and disappear from shelves let alone the consciousness of beloved readers. EK Books have a strong publicity arm (thanks, Alison!) and I'm so grateful for it. Indeed, I've had a week of radio interviews for Australia Day, and gosh, there are some gorgeous radio hosts out there; have had SO much fun chatting and talking about the importance of multiculturalism and diversity.

My kids are still off school (back next week), and today I ran them around a little and went to a new bookstore, Book Face, in Gungahlin. No matter how long you're in this game (10 years next year for me), seeing your book facing outwards (with over a dozen copies!!) in a bookstore is just the most beautiful feeling.

And on top of that, when I rounded the corner, a woman was leafing through the book while her kids played at her feet. I wanted to say 'OMG, you're holding my book!' but I would never dare!

I did, however, introduce myself to the bookstore manager and signed a few copies. It's so nice to see local stores supporting local authors.

On the way out, I grabbed their Summer Reading Guide and was surprised to see Australia Illustrated tucked inside. It's the loveliest feeling because writing books is such a 'blind' career--you rarely get direct feedback, and often feel like you're stumbling along in a darkened room!

It was also lovely to get EK Books' latest kids' catalogue last week and my little bee from Australia Illustrated is on the cover!

And there are some lovely book promos inside... You might even see a little new book(s) preview if you look hard enough...

And in super lovely news, Smile Cry is coming out in paperback and Jess Racklyeft and I are working on a sequel AS I TYPE! We also have some VERY exciting potential book news ... but need to await confirmation; hopefully soon.

The year is about to begin in earnest, and I have a lot planned and a lot to embark upon, which I'll reveal these coming months. Trust me when I say I will be stepping outside my comfort zone... a good thing!

Tomorrow I'm hosting a This is Banjo Paterson blog launch right here, so check back then for some cool posts on the production of the book, and more about Banjo's life. You can even win a copy of the book. Click the poster below for more.

And if you're in or near Canberra, don't miss the book's launch at the National Library on Sunday 12 February--more details here! I'll also be appearing in a live Periscope video (my very first, yikes!) on 17 February--Banjo's birthday. More on that soon.

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