Saturday, September 12, 2009
Cane Toads and Underpants: A Pocket Guide to Writing for Boys
I gave a speech at my panel presentation on Friday. There were five of us talking about Teaching Writing, so I wrote the Dingbat's Guide to Writing a Boys' Bestseller (you know, in the same vein as the Dummies guides and Idiots guides for adults). None of the other panelists were children's writers so I thought it was a good niche to exploit. It also allowed for some humour, and little chance of me slipping into academic-speak. I rounded it off by reading out the beginning of Morris Gleitzman's Bumface, which demonstrated so many of the things I had included in my 'pocket guide.' Thank goodness everyone laughed in all the right places. It shows that New Zealand humour isn't completely unlike the rest of the world.
On the same day I read aloud from my own work at Shambaugh House - from my published work A Hairy Tale (Kiwi Bites series) and an excerpt from Sausage Sizzle (which isn't finished yet but can be read by following the link). I absolutely loved both the panel presentation and the reading. People are so supportive in the IWP and they enjoy hearing you share your work.
People like Osman from Sierra Leone (picture above) confirmed for me that my writing is funny and that I manage to capture the essence of children in my characters. That was hugely reassuring.