JULY #PICBOOKBC CHAT QUESTIONS

Hello #picbookbc family, it’s almost time for another chat! This week we’re joined by Peter Carnavas as we celebrate picture books about Sadness!

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Peter lives in the Sunshine Coast hinterland with his wife, two daughters, a dog called Florence and a cat named Harry Potter just around the corner from a beautiful rainforest and waterfall. He’s been writing and illustrating books since 2008 when his first picture book, Jessica’s Box came out and before that he was a primary school teacher.

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His books have also been made into a stage show, a puppet show and a concert! Artslink produced Sarah’s Heavy Heart as a beautiful stage show (music, dance, and a really big beanbag heart) and they also teamed up with Dead Puppet Society to turn Last Tree in the City into an amazing puppet show.  In 2017, the Toowoomba Concert Orchestra presented The Great Expedition as a concert, featuring music, illustrations and me reading the story.

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Be sure to check out the full range of his books and more about him on his website!

 

Here are the chat questions for our sadness themed #picbookbc chat!

Q1. What’s your favourite picture book about sadness? Share a pic!

Q2. Books about sadness aren’t just tears and crying. What other elements of these books draws you to them?

Q3. Why is it important for bookshelves to include picture books with sad themes?

Q4. Books about grief can help normalise the range of emotions experienced when going through grief and give us empathy for others who are going through the process. Share you favourite and why.

Plus as always there will be plenty of time at the end to ask our guest author Peter Carnavas lots of questions! Woohoo!

 

We look forward to partying with you ‘picture book’ style on Thursday night the 4th of July at 8pm AEST for another #Picbookbc Twitter chat!

If you haven’t joined one of our chats before and wondering how it works head on over to our Welcome to the #picbookbc Twitter chat post!

-Ashleigh

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MAY #PICBOOKBC CHAT QUESTIONS

Hello #picbookbc family, it’s almost time for another chat! This week we’re joined by Matt Cosgrove as we celebrate Mum and Grandma themed picture books!

matt cosgrove Matt Cosgrove is an author and illustrator of children’s books who lives in Sydney. He’s best known for his Macca the Alpaca picture books and the Epic Fail Tales series. He’s also worked as Creative Director of Australia’s number 1 fashion magazine marie claire and has been in the publishing industry as an author, illustrator and designer for over twenty years. Something we’re also very excited about is that Matt is this year’s ALIA National Simultaneous Storytime (NSS) author with his book Alpacas and Maracas! #NSS2019 #1MillionKidsReading

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Be sure to also check out his latest book Thanks, Mum for a sweet read about mums and all the ways they help us out and show their love!

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Here are the chat questions for our mum/grandma themed #picbookbc chat!

Q1. What’s your favourite mum/grandma themed picture book? Share a photo!

Q2. What types of Mums/grandmas would you love to see represented in picture books? Why?

Q3. What’s a favourite picture book you enjoyed sharing with your mum/ grandma? Why?

Q4. Who’s your favourite picture book mum/grandma?

Plus as always there will be plenty of time at the end to ask our guest author Matt Cosgrove lots of questions! Woohoo!

 

We look forward to partying with you ‘picture book’ style on Thursday night the 9th of May at 8pm AEST for another #Picbookbc Twitter chat!

If you haven’t joined one of our chats before and wondering how it works head on over to our Welcome to the #picbookbc Twitter chat post!

-Ashleigh

JULY WRAP UP!

We had lots of fun talking the senses at our #picbookbc chat on Thursday 5th July with Tania McCartney!

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Here are some of the great books that were shared and some highlights from the tantalising discussion we had.

Q1. What’s your favourite picture book that explores the senses? 

starI Hear a Pickle’ by Rachel Isadora

starThe Black Book of Colours by Menena Cottin & Rosana Faria

star The Eye Book by Dr Seuss

star You Can’t Taste a Pickle with Your Ear by Harriet Ziefert & Amanda Haley

star David Smells by David Shannon

star Reena’s Rainbow by Dee White & Tracie Grimwood

starMole’s Sunrise by Jeanne Willis & Sarah Fox-Davies.

starHow do I see? By Katie Daynes

starHorton Hears A Who by Dr Seuss

starThe Very Hungry Caterpiller

starHerman and Rosie by Gus Gordon

Our guest Tania McCartney shared some great classic senses books!

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Q2. Does reading about the senses change your perspective on how you view things?

One common theme that came up in the answers was that reading about the senses helped people to be mindful and widen your perspective.

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Q3. If you had to pick one, which of the five senses is most important to explore in picture books? Why?

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And we talked about how different senses may be more interesting or important at different ages!

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Q4. How can we use picture books to teach children about those who are without one or more of their senses?

The general consensus was that picture books provided us with a way to open up children’s imaginations to understanding and developing their empathy for those living without one or more of their senses.

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At the end of the questions we had a sensational Q & A with Tania!

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We hope you had as much fun as Tania and ourselves did and it’s always great to hear when you enjoy the chats and discussions!

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Don’t forget to join us Thursday 2nd at 8pm to chat Nature picture books with Anna Walker!

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– Ashleigh

JULY #PICBOOKBC CHAT QUESTIONS

Only a few days till our July #picbookbc chat where we’re talking about ‘The Five Senses’ with special guest Tania McCartneyfive senses

Tania McCartney lives and breathes books and she comes as close as one can to actually living within a book! While we mostly know her as an author, illustrator and booklover, she’s also an editor and has 30 years’ experience in magazines and publishing as well as a decade’s experience in book layout, design and typography.

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She currently has 40 books in print or in production including See Hear and Merry Everything both co-created with Jess Racklyeft and Australia Illustrated which showcases Tania’s illustrating abilities. You can find more of her books as well as future works and illustrations on her website.

 

Here are the chat questions for our sensational #picbookbc chat!

Q1. What’s your favourite picture book that explores the senses? Share a pic!

Q2. Does reading about the senses change your perspective on how you view things?

Q3. If you had to pick one, which of the five senses is most important to explore in picture books? Why?

Q4. How can we use picture books to teach children about those who are without one or more of their senses?

There will also be plenty of time at the end for Tania to answer your questions so come prepared!

We look forward to partying with you ‘picture book’ style on Thursday night the 5th of July at 8pm AEST for another #Picbookbc Twitter chat!

If you haven’t joined one of our chats before and wondering how it works head on over to our Welcome to the #picbookbc Twitter chat post!

-Ashleigh

DECEMBER GUEST BLOG – LILI WILKINSON

Lili Wilkinson is our lovely December guest and we are very lucky to get to watch as she enters the world of writing picture books for the first time. Lili wrote us this beautiful post about her experiences writing her first picture book, That Christmas Feeling, and how the opportunity came about!

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Writing a picture book is really, really different to writing a novel. I was
approached to write this book by my editor friend Susannah, who knows how
much I love Christmas. She wanted a sweet, heartwarming Christmas story that
wasn’t religious, and she thought I was the right person to write it.

I am VERY into Christmas. It starts in November when I make the Christmas
puddings with my mum and my son Banjo. The tree goes up on December 1
(never before), and Christmas is on. I have a massive playlist of Christmas music
that I love listening to, and one of my favourite nights is when we visit a family
friend’s house for a carol-singing party. Christmas Day itself is lovely, but really
it’s all about the lead-up to me – the Advent calendar, seeing wreaths on people’s
front doors, driving home and seeing twinkling lights. It’s the fizzy, exciting
feeling that Dottie talks about in the book.

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So I knew I wanted my Christmas book to be about family, because for me family
is a big part of Christmas. While I’m not religious, I’ve always been fond of the
Christmas story (with the baby Jesus and the manger and the wise men). For me,
the story is more moving if the religious element is removed – even though the
baby is born in such a humble place, to unimportant parents, he is still visited by
kings, because all new life is special and worthy of being celebrated.

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So the story came out of those thoughts. It went through quite a few edits, and I
found this process really fascinating. Making big editorial changes to a novel is
like trying to turn around a massive cruise ship – you can’t really see what you’re
doing and it’s going to take a lot of time to do it right and make sure the whole
thing doesn’t sink. It’s incredibly difficult to keep it all in your head, and to figure
out how each little change affects the rest of the story. But with a picture book,
you can really see the whole thing at once. Wonder what it would be like in
present instead of past tense? Give me ten minutes and I’ll rewrite it. We were
making significant changes to the text the day before it went to print. That part of
it felt very dynamic and exciting.

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But of course the best thing about the process was seeing the story come to life
through Amanda Francey’s stunning illustrations. It’s an amazing thing seeing
them all for the first time – just like the fizzy, exciting Christmas feeling!
And the thing I didn’t quite realise when I started, is that you get to share the
creative load – I don’t have to tell the whole story by myself!
I’ve definitely caught the picture book bug – this won’t be the last one you see
from me!

– Lili Wilkinson

 

You can find out more about Lili Wilkinson and the books she’s written on her website or follow her on Instagram and Twitter.  Don’t forget to also join Lili and the @PictureBookbc team this Thursday 7th December at 8pm AEST for our December Twitter Chat!

April #picbookbc chat Questions!

Only a few days till our next #picbookbc chat, oh my! We’re certainly excited and hope you are too! In case you’ve missed it, this month’s theme is Illustrations in Picture Books. We’ll also be joined by our delightful guest, illustrator and story teller Anna Walker!

Here are the questions, to help get you prepared! We apologise for the delay in the upload of the questions as they normally go up on the Monday before the chat, oops! We’re going to blame the extreme weather we’ve been having for this one!

Q1. Who are your favourite picture book illustrators and why? What do you love about their illustrating style?

Q2. In a picture book, do you think illustrations are just as important as text? Why?

Q3. When collaborating with an author, do you think that illustrators can get overlooked?

Q4. In your experience, how have picture book illustrations changed over the years? How do you see them evolving in the future?

And we’ll wrap it all up with question time with Anna Walker, so come prepared!

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If you’re unfamiliar with how the chat works head on over to our welcome post!

Join in on the fun at 8pm (AEST) on Thursday the 6 of April!

Hope to see you there!

-Ashleigh

 

‘The Possibilities of Picture Books’

Anna Walker is a name synonymous with picture books in Australia. She is known for her charming, thoughtful and beautiful illustrations all of which are inspired by the tiny details in the world around her. Anna is an award winning author and illustrator and we are most delighted to have her as our guest at the April #picbookbc Twitter chat/party on Thursday 6 April to discuss illustrations in picture books!

Florette‘ is the latest release by Anna Walker and is a sheer delight for readers of all ages.

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Thank you Anna for sharing your own picture book story with us!

The Possibilities of Picture Books

Anna Walker

Imagine a huge room full of magnificent books. A child wanders through the aisles carefully looking for the right book, when she hears a faint sound. Past the towering shelves, through the novels full of adventure, the sound grows louder. Eventually she reaches the far corner of the room to be greeted by a wonderful chorus of chirps, growls and joyful elephant trumpets! It is the children’s book section. The sun streams in the window and as if discovering treasure, the child picks up a book.

Sitting in that sunbeam of light, lost in another world is where I belong. I have always loved books, but picture books are my true love. It has been this way ever since I can remember.

Mum tells the story of me as a baby sitting in my cot with a stack of books. Apparently I would look carefully through each book, ceremoniously tip it on to the floor and then pick up the next one. I am not sure whether my love of books was inspired by this story or whether this story came from my love of books. Either way stories give our life meaning, provide connection and identity. The stories we listen to as a child, the stories we tell as children form part of who we are.

The possibilities picture books provide are not limited to helping us understand the world around us, they are a gateway to the imagination. Words hardly do this concept justice. I wish I could illustrate this paragraph! The chance to escape on an adventure to a place you have never dreamt of, to take part in a tea party with a lion or run with a rabbit in golden shoes is pure joy.

As a child I was sometimes reluctant to voice my thoughts by speaking up. Creating images and writing though, was a way of expressing my ideas and helped me gain confidence. I am passionate about children being given the chance to not only experience diverse picture books but to explore telling stories, and express ideas in different mediums.

One of the privileges of being an illustrator is doing workshops with children – the wonderful creative beings that they are! In some classes we create bird characters. It is with delight that I see all those individual expressions of birds using only paper and a pencil, each of them with their individual character. It gives me particular pleasure to see the child who exclaims ‘I can’t draw’ proudly holding up their creation and telling the class about a world they have envisaged.

If it was up to me all children would have the chance to explore different art mediums along with reading and writing – all the way through primary school and beyond! I would love to see further exploration of creativity as part of the curriculum. Paper clay, animation, sand sculpture, split pin creatures, dioramas, cardboard cities, mono-printing, chalk drawings, shadow puppets, ink blobs, stick construction, watercolour, screen printing, fabric painting, abstract work, collage and more! This desire is not because I want all children to become artists, it is seeking the chance for them to discover new ways of seeing things. I think it is great to use different mediums for problem solving and finding interesting solutions to express an idea. And an added bonus is the child weaving their own stories around this creativity.

We are fortunate to be in an era in which there are sooooooo many wonderful picture books! To see a child connect with a story or delight in the world of imagination is a precious thing. And the possibility that a story might inspire a child to express their own unique voice is one of the many reasons I love the world of picture books!