A similar thing is happening in the kids' lit scene here in Perth at present, I noticed as I sailed westwards to Rottnest for the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators third annual retreat, which I attended with folk like Norman Jorgensen and James Foley, whose Last Viking book launch I attended on Friday night, Briony Stewart, whose next book Kumiko and the Shadow Catchers is about to be launched, and Meg McKinlay, whose book No Bears was launched at Rottnest by the talent-fostering Sarah Foster from Walker Books - to name but a few. I spent most of the time cycling around the very windy island, ruminating, and having long discussions about writing, the universe and everything with my fellow housies Meg, Patricia McMahon (into whose lap in the dark a quokka leapt) and the indefatigable Dianne Wolfer, but I did notice that same indefinable energy and enthusiasm that I remembered from way back when. I also believe there was karaoke.
|The lap-leaping quokka|
|AJ Betts getting funky|
|AJ Betts and Meg McKinlay vik-ing it up|
|Do you think I could add these to my parliamentary outfit?|
3. Here is my latest book haul (thanks, Lending Rights!)
Lili Wilkinson); Margo Lanagan's Yellowcake (ditto); Six Impossible Things by Fiona Wood; Isobelle Carmody's The Red Wind; Libba Bray's Beauty Queens; and the books I mentioned earlier, No Bears by Meg McKinlay and The Last Viking by Norman Jorgensen and James Foley.