Last Viking Returns voted number one by WA kids

The Last Viking Returns (2014), front coverNorm and I have some good news: The Last Viking Returns has won the Hoffman Award!

It’s one of the WA Young Readers’ Book Awards and it’s given to the highest-ranked book by a WA creator. The Last Viking won the same award back in 2012.

Huge thanks to all the WA kids who voted for our book; it means a lot.

You can read more about the win on the Fremantle Press website.

My Dead Bunny coming to Sydney, Perth & Melbourne

10-days-to-launchThere’s only 10 days until the release date of My Dead Bunny!

You’re invited to join myself and Bunny Brad at one of three events across the country in the next few weeks.

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Author Visit: James Foley

Thanks To the staff at Carey Baptist College iCentre for the great write-up on my visit!

Teasdale iCentre

On Tuesday the 5th of August, we had a visit from author/illustrator James Foley at the Carey iCentre.  James is the illustrator of The Last Viking and The Last Viking Returns, and the author/illustrator of In The Lion and My Dead Bunny, which will be released later in the year.

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James came to speak to the year 7s and 8s about picture books, how it got his start in them and of his love of drawing.  He shared art and stories from when he was at school, speaking of his early attempts at art and story writing, and how it progressed with practice, all interspersed with humorous stories.

James 1Students

From there he shared of how he came into illustrating books, of the story-boarding and trail and error it took to arrive at the final version ready for publishing.  He also read and showed his latest book, My Dead Bunny…

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Zombie animals terrify at Telling Tales

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Last weekend I visited Balingup for their annual Telling Tales Children’s Storytelling Festival.

Balingup is a beautiful town in the South-West Region surrounded by farms, bushland and pine forest. When the sun is out the scenery is stunning – it’s all green hills and winding valleys. But on cold winter mornings a mist descends upon the town, which creates an incredibly spooky atmosphere. It’s the perfect setting for a scary story …

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An upcycled kindergarten

Header-IMG_4882 I’ve been working on a great community project since April; I was hired by Yanchep Community Centre to redesign their playgroup outdoor area. It needed to be suitable for the 2-4 year olds from the weekly playgroups, and it needed to include a water play area and a music play area. it also needed to use as many upcycled materials as possible. Here’s what we did.

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The Rottnest Island Retreat, & other SCBWI news

Thompson Bay, Rottnest IslandEvery year since 2009, members of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) have gathered on Rottnest Island in June for a winter retreat. We spend four days writing, drawing, working on stories and learning from guest speakers. It’s my favourite time of the year.

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Attack of the Zombie Animals

moo-brains-20150515-headerSubscribers of my email newsletter The James Foley-O will know that I have a new book coming out in October. It’s about a pet rabbit that dies and comes back from the dead as a zombie; it’s called My Dead Bunny. It’s written by Sigi Cohen and published by Walker Books Australia. I’m busting to show you the cover! I’ll reveal more in the next couple of months. In the meantime, here’s some pictures of other zombie animals …

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Room To Read’s World Change Challenge 2015

rtr_logo_color_large-400px-highRoom to Read World Change Challenge logo 2015

I’ve recently become a writer-ambassador for an NGO called Room To Read, who (along with kids’ author Tristan Bancks) is running a campaign called the World Change Challenge.

The aim is to raise money for school children in Nepal.

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Making a mural at the Perth Writers Festival

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The Perth Writers Festival is over for another year. The weekend goes by so quick! I was very happy to be back this year as a presenter on the schools’ day and family day, and this year I also got to work on something a bit different – a massive mural.

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