Feeling Bookish


Book week is weeks away but it’s more like book month for authors, as schools snap us up for visits and events. On Monday, I went to Punchbowl Public School for an arvo tea with Susanne Gervay, Sue Walker and Libby Hawthorn. Each author spoke passionately about their books, you always learn a lot from hearing other authors speak.

On Tuesday, I saw even more authors and kids at the CBCA Illawarra luncheon, where Dave Hackett led a great line up of authors and illustrators. We all got to pitch our books in a 2 min talk. Most authors played it straight but jokers like myself and Bill Condon mucked around haha. It was so good to see so many kids excited about reading and getting autographs. Cheers to the my lovely hosts, the kids from Mt Pleasant PS!

Mmmm red cordial 🙂

On Wednesday, I went to Dee Why for another arvo tea at St Kevins. Lots of young kids who were sugared up for some author action. I was joined by Jan Latta and Belinda Murrell. We all offered different things to the kids and they lapped it up!

Talking about my idol Andy Griffiths.

That night, I traveled across to Lindfield Bookshop for the fourth CBCA Northern Sydney Sub-branch meeting with special guest speakers Scott Windmott, owner of the Bookshop and Random House publisher Zoe Walton. We all crammed into the cosy children’s section and heard many interesting things.

Scott spoke about why booksellers will survive-with it’s range, knowledge, passion and service. It’s true, I’ll always love getting books that have been hand-sold or recommended to me. I always go into Better Read Than Dead in Newtown and let Amelia choose a few titles for me-she hasn’t given me a bad book yet!

Scott and Zoe touched upon series and stand alone books. There’s a real need for good stand alone books, it seems like the shelves are full of series. Not that there’s anything wrong with a series, especially ones that are solid and can be read without reading any others like the cool Alice Miranda or Nanny Piggins series. There was also talk of having numbers on the spines or at least inside the book so people know the order of the series. Also, the choice to rejacket books…one of my pet hates especially when the series hasn’t ended yet.

Zoe talked about proactive authors inspiring them and how author care is important. I’m chuffed to be part of the Penguin family and they’ve treated me well! *Penguin Slap* With all this talk of e books, there’s still a need for aussie stories and content is king. Books are market resilient and children books are robust.

All this makes for good fodder for my yet untitled (and unwritten) novel, so far code-named ‘Bookish’ which is about a bookworm, yep you guessed it, another book about ME. I’ve got another 72 stories in me so don’t worry, cHEwY creations will keep charging on!


About the author

I'm an author, stand-up comedian and teacher. My books include Thai-riffic!, Con-nerd, Punchlines and The Other Christy. I'm a massive Nintendo fan and love eating burgers. Follow me on Twitter or Instagram @oliverwinfree

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