Marvellous May

  • Everyone is talking about diversity in children’s books, it seems. The Asian Festival of Children’s Content is an annual event that more than talks about diversity – it is an opportunity for children’s content creators from all over the world to meet and find out what is going on in different countries. The organisers originally wanted it to be the Bologna of the southern hemisphere: my guess is that it’s already beyond that. I was lucky to attend in 2012, and I can’t wait to see how it’s changed and grown. This year, the country of focus is Japan. (Thanks to writingwa, SCBWI West and the Department of Culture and the Arts for making this possible.)
  • I got an advance copy of The Book That Made Me yesterday, edited by the wonderful Judith Ridge. It doesn’t launch til September, but I am proud to be among this bunch of luminaries, including Shaun Tan, Markus Zusak, Fiona Wood, James Roy, Ambelin Kwaymullina, Simone Howell and more. All proceeds go to the Indigenous Literacy Foundation. Here is a sneak peak:

Bookmark some reading time in September for this


Left: me pretending to be Laura Ingalls Wilder

  • The Cambridge Youth Network Young Writers Competition is now open: deadline is 24 July. Download an entry form and further information from
  • Here, for no particular reason, is a photo of our Jack Russell. As well as featuring as a major character in my new YA novel, to by published by Penguin Random House in February 2017, he really, really doesn’t like being bathed.


    Hecta the bath-resisting dog




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