THE HAPPY BOOK Children's Book Podcast

Wednesday, 2 January 2019

Hello, I’m Tania McCartney. I’m an author, illustrator and editor of children’s books. I’ve always wanted to live inside a book, and now I practically do.

I'm here to share with you over thirty years of writing and publishing experience. This is where you'll find insights, insider info, interviews and inspiration to take with you on your kids' book journey. I’ll be discussing the publication journey in all its incarnations—from baby books to young adult literature—from emerging status right through to taking your career up a level.

I’ll share with you my own journey and experience, and will also regularly pick the brains of some amazing people—authors, illustrators, editors, publishers, booksellers, librarians and other industry professionals.

In Series One, we’ll be covering a wealth of ideas, from sowing story seeds through editing, picture book construction and into illustrator journeys. We’ll look at assessments, plotting and planning middle grade, conferences and festivals—there’s just SO much to cover.

As the series of 10 podcasts goes live, you’ll see details of each one listed in the space below. Content will suit both emerging creators and those who’ve been in the game a while.

If you have any questions or comments, you can say hello at books@taniamccartney.com.

So, let’s get started. Fire up your device, cram in those earbuds and enjoy this foray into the magical world of kids’ book creation. Welcome to this happy place—The Happy Book.

HELLO! Click my pic to learn more about me. Photo by Maree Azzopardi.
What peeps are saying...
Sooo inspiring, meaningful and heartfelt. Listening to them as I create has helped me feel less isolated here in my own little imaginative world. I look forward to each new week!

I'm thoroughly enjoying the Happy Book podcast. Part of today's did more than just resonate with me - I felt the reverberations in my bones. So much so, I took action I've been procrastinating over for several months.

Just tuned into Ep. One! You are always so generous with advice and industry insight, T. A fantastic podcast concept, and one which will benefit creators at any stage of their journey. Bring on Ep. Two!!

Listened to Chapter One this morning- what a lovely inspirational and motivational experience. So excited to have another fabulous Australian Kidlit podcast to delight in!

A gem of warmth, glorious voice giving great advice and reminders. Thanks, Tania. A triumph.

Thoroughly enjoyed listening to this! Tania, you're a renaissance woman!

Great content, fabulous advice. I’m looking forward to chapter 2!

Tania this is such a wonderful podcast. Without meaning to use any writer puns, your voice and pacing are perfect. And it's so interesting. Lucky listeners.

You are AMAZING! Just finished listening to both episodes now that it is on iTunes. You magically crammed so much into two episodes. I can't wait to tune in for more.

I absolutely love the The Happy Book podcast and I am definitely looking forward to series two! The information Tania generously shares is invaluable and essential to all, especially aspiring children’s book authors. Now to put all this delicious information to paper.

Seriously, I wish I could listen to it ALL DAY!

The Happy Book Facebook Page
Please do leave a review/recommendation if you love The Happy Book's content! x

THE PODCASTS . . . 



The Happy Book – Chapter 13

Making money in this kids’ book game (and accounts … groan)

Air date: 17 April 2019

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CLICK TO LISTEN ON iTUNES
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HELLO!
Welcome to Chapter 13 of The Happy Book. In this chapter, I’ll be talking to you about money money money. How to make money in this kids’ book game, optional revenue earners—both as author and illustrator—and unexpected sources of income you may not have heard of.

I’ll also be covering accounts… yes, yes, groan. But they are important, and there are ways to stay on top of them and still retain every hair on your head. If you’re keen to make this career a fulltime one, this podcast is for you.

Fire up your device, cram in those earbuds and enjoy this foray into the magical world of kids’ book creation. If you have any questions or comments, you can say hello at books@taniamccartney.com.

I’m Tania McCartney and I’m an author, illustrator and editor of children’s books. I’ve always wanted to live inside a book, and now I practically do. Welcome to this happy place—The Happy Book.

SHOW NOTES
00:35 Introduction
01:37 My bevy of choice—mineral water with a whisper elderflower cordial
01:57 Money and the creative arts
02:58 The lion’s share of your income will not come from books (at first)
03:39 Doubling my revenue with illustrating
04:04 The multi-hatted creator and the need to diversify revenue streams
04:19 Writing across genres and styles
04:25 Magazine work
04:36 Editing books and magazine articles
04:48 The School Magazine
04:56 Online sites or reviewing
05:11 Kids’ Book Review
05:35 Monetising websites
06:09 Weighing up gratis work for ‘exposure’
06:32 Doing something for exposure
06:45 Teaching and speaking
07:28 Being paid to speak at events
07:51 Professional development days for teachers
08:08 School visits
08:26 Self-publishing and selling book copies
08:37 Buying book stock from your publisher
09:14 Selling books on my Etsy store
09:34 Selling prints on my Etsy store
10:02 Your copyright to your book illustrations
11:13 Setting up your own online store—some options
12:23 Payment—PayPal
12:37 Selling your books exclusively online
13:41 Addendum products
14:37 Getting self-published books onto major online stores
15:17 Selling your books directly to local bookstores
16:12 Firm sale or consignment
17:10 Venues to sell books other than bookstores
17:57 School and library visits
18:32 Tips for signing books, take bookmarks, addendum product
18:55 Sell at events and markets
19:30 Tips for market stalls
25:54 Keeping a market database
26:06 Other ways to earn money—greeting cards
26:58 Editing
27:27 Mentoring
28:01 Looking for revenue earners that don’t cut into production time
28:49 The Fantastical Flying Creator as a revenue earner
29:50 Laminating and customisation
30:49 Jess Racklyeft and her diversification
32:40 Offering signed books on your website
33:10 Make sales by having giveaways
33:50 Tips for hosting a giveaway on Instagram
36:24 A Bear a Day and a Fleur a Day original art auctions on Instagram
37:58 Crowdfunding—pros and cons
42:33 Dinner and a glass of rosé
42:46 Securing new contracts
43:00 Contracts with net receipts
45:28 Another glass of rosé—why not?
45:38 Your local writers’ centre, manuscript assessments, portfolio
46:20 Earning money with Educational and Public Lending Rights
47:11 Copyright agency payments
48:11 Splitting your ELR/PLR payment with your co-creator
48:36 ELR/PLR publisher payments
49:21 Tips on investing money in your own business
50:12 Most of my investment is in time and energy, not spending cash
50:36 Contradeals with colleagues and friends
51:07 How much to charge
51:37 Cover or make profit on actual costs
52:08 Charging for events, appearances, workshops
52:32 The more experience, the more you can charge
52:44 What to charge for artwork
53:40 A reason you would seriously inflate the price of something
54:00 Your time, energy, expertise and experience goes into everything
54:19 Set a price and double it
54:40 Value beliefs
55:15 Accounts
55:41 Apps and programmes
56:35 How I take care of my accounts
58:52 Get yourself a tax accountant
59:53 Wrap-up
1:00:35 Coming up next week
1:01:35 The End

Music: Ukulele Whistle by Scott Holmes

PODCAST LINKS 
Kids’ Book Review
The School Magazine
Lending Rights
The Copyright Agency
Etsy
Big Cartel
Made It
Red Bubble
Ebay
PayPal
The Fantastical Flying Creator
Jesses Mess Etsy Store
Jess Rackleft on Instagram
Tania McCartney Illos Etsy Store
A Bear a Day/A Fleur a Day (scroll down to see the bears)
Australian Society of Authors

LINKS
The Happy Book Facebook Page
taniamccartney.com
facebook.com/TaniaMcCartneyAuthor
twitter.com/TaniaMcCartney
instagram.com/taniamccartney
Tania McCartney Illos Etsy Store
The Fantastical Flying Creator
Kids' Book Review




The Happy Book – Chapter 12

Junior Fiction series, plotting and planning with author Cate Whittle

Air date: 10 April 2019

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CLICK TO LISTEN ON SPOTIFY

HELLO!
Welcome to Chapter 12 of The Happy Book. In this chapter, I’ll be talking to author and friend, Cate Whittle. Cate is a junior fiction queen, and I’ll be chatting with her about the inspiring way she creates her books, how she plots and plans so well, yet still manages to pen such evocative and beautiful language, even for younger readers.

I’ll also talk to Cate about how she creates her gorgeous characters, about passion projects, about career trajectory and so much more.

Fire up your device, cram in those earbuds and enjoy this foray into the magical world of kids’ book creation. If you have any questions or comments, you can say hello at books@taniamccartney.com.

I’m Tania McCartney and I’m an author, illustrator and editor of children’s books. I’ve always wanted to live inside a book, and now I practically do. Welcome to this happy place—The Happy Book.

GUEST – CATE WHITTLE

Cate Whittle has been writing for children and young adults for over 15 years, with many articles, book reviews, and short stories published in a range of magazines and anthologies, both in print and online, and her work has been placed in competitions both nationally and internationally. The first book in her series for young readers, Trouble at Home, about a girl and her troublesome dragon, was published by Omnibus Scholastic in 2016. Cate’s latest book, Wyrd, a middle grade fantasy for slightly older readers, was released in August 2018. Next up is Emergency Rescue Angel, another middle grade/young YA title. Also a teacher, Cate has a passion for nurturing a love of stories in her students, and she has delivered workshops for grown-ups, too, working with ACT Writers Centre and SCBWI ACT. Cate lives on a hillside overlooking a beautiful rural valley in New South Wales with her family, a cat, and a whole host of wildlife that visits her backyard.

SHOW NOTES
00:35 Introduction
01:36 Introducing Cate Whittle
02:53 Our bevvies of choice—with ginger and lemon tea with local apple box honey and a creamy flat white
04:18 A typical writing day for Cate
08:20 Cate’s genres – junior fiction and middle grade
09:28 The difference between Junior Fiction and Middle Grade
11:21 Expanding on vocabulary
12:23 Cate’s Trouble junior fiction series origins
14:12 Magic realism—kids adore it
14:44 Age groups for Trouble—younger and older readers
15:54 Not getting caught up in readership age
16:39 Would Cate like to write picture books?
16:30 Word economy in picture books
17:50 Wyrd—Cate’s middle grade fiction
19:01 Relationship exploration
19:37 Writers need to reflect what children experience in real life
21:09 Putting ourselves in the minds and hearts of our readers
22:07 Condensing your message so they work harder at a lower word count
22:57 Beautiful writing and language for younger readers
25:14 The Rule of Three and poetic balance
25:48 Exquisite language—Cornelia Funke
26:58 The Rule of Three
28:17 Fairy tale story construct and Celtic tales
29:15 Sentence structure and rhythm—reading aloud
30:20 Authenticity, especially in dialogue
30:45 Writing a series—the dos and don’ts
32:48 Terry Pratchett
33:36 What has been the biggest challenge writing junior fiction
34:12 Better to have too many words than not enough
35:13 Expositional text—showing not telling
36:17 Sometimes it is okay to tell
36:49 Plotting
38:33 Kate Forsyth and plotting
39:33 Plotter or pantser or a blending of both
39:50 James Patterson and plotting
41:12 Techniques and devices to thread plot points
42:30 Joseph Campbell’s Hero’s Journey
43:16 Learning the rules and then breaking them
44:16 What we should never do
45:48 Character design
46:43 Talking to your character
47:06 Character files
47:34 Channelling characters and stories
48:00 Characters with flaws
49:21 What character traits do protagonists need to have?
50:15 When is a story finished/ready to send a publisher?
52:03 Manuscript assessments can teach so much
53:45 When passion projects bring us joy
54:56 Your apprenticeship as a creator—10,000 hours
56:12 Top three slices of advice for emerging creators
58:13 Getting industry and community involved
59:36 This career is such a solitary existence
1:00:17 Cate’s favourite children’s book right now
1:00:47 What’s coming up for Cate
1:03:12 What would Cate’s dream project be?
1:05:44 Wrap-up
1:06:45 Another coffee
1:08:03 Coming up next week
1:09:04 The End

Music: Ukulele Whistle by Scott Holmes

PODCAST LINKS 
Cate Whittle
Morning pages
The Trouble Series
Wyrd
Reckless by Cornelia Funke
The Rule of Three
Nevermoor by Jessica Townsend
Wundersmith by Jessica Townsend
The Mulberry Tree by Alison Rushby
Magic Beach by Alison Lester

LINKS
The Happy Book Facebook Page
taniamccartney.com
facebook.com/TaniaMcCartneyAuthor
twitter.com/TaniaMcCartney
instagram.com/taniamccartney
Tania McCartney Illos Etsy Store
The Fantastical Flying Creator
Kids' Book Review

COMING UP CHAPTER 13 – How to make money in this kids’ book biz (oh, and accounts … groan).




The Happy Book – Chapter 11

Sparkling School Visits

Air date: 3 April 2019

CLICK TO LISTEN ON WHOOSHKAA
CLICK TO LISTEN ON iTUNES
CLICK TO LISTEN ON SPOTIFY

HELLO!
Welcome to Series Two, Chapter 11 of The Happy Book. In this chapter, I’ll be revealing the ins and outs, ups and downs and roundabouts of sparkling school visits. We’ll cover EVERYTHING, from organising a visit to creating eye-popping presentations that will have kids enthralled, right through to what to charge and all the formal details you’ll need to square away.

You’ll learn about book sales and signing, types of presentations, age groups and numbers, equipment needed, making both teachers and students happy, and my best tips for repeat bookings—it’s all included, yes it is.

Special guests mentioned in this chapter are: Cate Whittle, Susanne Gervay, Belinda Murrell, Frané Lessac, Kate and Jol Temple, and Michael Gerard Bauer.

Fire up your device, cram in those earbuds and enjoy this foray into the magical world of kids’ book creation. If you have any questions or comments, you can say hello at books@taniamccartney.com.

I’m Tania McCartney and I’m an author, illustrator and editor of children’s books. I’ve always wanted to live inside a book, and now I practically do. Welcome to this happy place—The Happy Book.

SHOW NOTES
00:32 Introduction
01:36 A big thank you
02:11 The Happy Book Facebook Page
02:20 A long black with cream, yes cream and a keto/health update—eep!
04:09 The creator and their multi-hatted journey
04:31 A variety of school visits
04:52 My school visits
05:30 Learning and creative inspiration from school visits
07:08 The boring stuff—requirements for school visits
07:26 Public Liability Insurance
07:46 Author business insurance
09:01 State and territory requirements—Working with Vulnerable People card
09:40 School reluctance
11:16 Randomly approaching schools
11:42 Organising visits well in advance
12:12 Approaching your target age group
13:07 Visual presentations to fit many ages
13:32 Book signings
15:48 Order forms for books
17:14 Which schools to visit
18:20 Interstate school visits
18:54 Cold-calling schools and their response
19:27 Different types of schools and what they focus on
20:21 Staff enthusiasm
20:57 Keeping notes on each school
21:56 What to charge
22:30 Exposure bucks
23:50 Doing school visits for free
24:34 Charging a higher fee for the first presentation of multiple sessions
25:23 Adding value to your visit—speaking to larger groups
26:00 What does the school want from your visit?
26:23 Creating a single presi that will stretch across grades
27:52 Equipment
29:20 Ensuring your presentation will work properly
30:07 Confirm the age groups and numbers
30:16 Navigation information and directions
30:39 Timeframes
31:15 Timing your sessions through the day
31:41 Try to be flexible
31:53 A lovely glass of sparkling mineral water, and no food!
32:10 Presentation content
32:45 Writing new presis for new books
33:10 When schools ask you to create something specific
33:55 PowerPoint presentations
35:33 Content and themes/engaging children with interactivity—Australian Story
36:57 I Love Books presentation interactivity
38:13 Be yourself
38:39 Presi ideas
39:30 Use visuals and props
39:42 Question time
39:53 Have fun, be silly, ham it up
40:28 Tips on making your presentation truly pro
46:55 Dealing with extreme nerves
47:17 My severe anxiety at my first CBCA conference
48:26 Tips for anxious speakers
53:57 When you finish your school visit, asking for feedback
54:39 Green tea with dandelion—good for your liver!
54:57 My top tips for school visit success
55:12 Appropriate content
55:27 Adjust tone and language to suit age groups
55:48 Use humour and audience involvement
56:00 Use props
56:15 Ask kids questions
56:27 Don’t ignore the adults in the room but ignore detractors
56:55 Make it about the kids
57:10 Stick to time
57:29 Don’t always choose the loud kids
57:56 Be dynamic; change your tone and inflection and volume
58:17 Tips to regain control of kids
58:44 Asking teachers to step in
59:39 Watch for boredom
1:00:20 Keep an eye on the time
1:00:20 School Tips from some amazing authors and illustrators
1:00:43 Cate Whittle
1:02:04 Susanne Gervay
1:02:34 Belinda Murrell
1:03:53 Frané Lessac
1:04:58 Kate and Jol Temple
1:06:48 Michael Gerard Bauer
1:07:40 Wrap-up—with a glass of champagne
1:08:19 Coming next week
1:09:14 The End

Music: Ukulele Whistle by Scott Holmes

PODCAST LINKS 
The Happy Book Facebook Page
Keto
Autophagy and intermittent fasting
16:8 Regime
Dr Gundry’s The Plant Paradox—lectins
Jaw-dropping lectin facts and leaky gut/inflammation
Australian Society of Authors
Duck for Cover PLI
AAMI Author Business Insurance
Australian Story
Cate Whittle
Susanne Gervay
Belinda Murrell
Frané Lessac
Kate and Jol Temple
Michael Gerard Bauer

LINKS
taniamccartney.com
facebook.com/TaniaMcCartneyAuthor
twitter.com/TaniaMcCartney
instagram.com/taniamccartney

COMING UP
CHAPTER 12 – Author Cate Whittle joins us to talk about writing junior fiction, plotting and planning.






Series One aired in the first three months of 2019. Click here for the full outline of each chapter.

Chapter 10 : Conferences, festivals and other kids' book events

Chapter 9 : Plotting and planning a middle grade novel with author Sheryl Gwyther

Chapter 8 : Illustrator Next Level

Chapter 7 : Story Seed Ideas, Faction and Research with author Dee White

Chapter 6 : The Creative Life Balance—your setting, schedule, health, confidence and more

Chapter 5 : Editing Your Work and Working with an Editor with author/editor Irma Gold

Chapter 4 : Next Level - taking your career up a notch

Chapter 3 : Picture Book Creation and Illustration with Jess Racklyeft

Chapter 2 : Picture Book 101

Chapter 1 : The Many Routes on the Publication Journey, and Submitting Your Manuscripts

1 comment:

hazel said...

A timely initiative for many writing or contemplating writing & illustrating children's books. In the past year I've decided that podcasts are the most efficient way of learning and of sharing relevant experiences.

Hazel Edwards

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