It was nice to have a later morning with our first school about a ten minute drive from the hotel. In the meantime Zoe and I took Alice-Miranda out to have a stroll along the waterfront. As always, she made some new friends!
Geelong Grammar Prep School has students from Prep to Grade 4. It's a beautiful campus on a tree lined street. The library is housed in the main building which is a well restored Federation house. With lots of period features it's a lovely space for the children to read. We had the event in the music room, which is also a great space for the students.
I talked with the Prep to Year 2 children first. There were lots of adorable students and some funny questions and comments. They enjoyed the drama activity and it was great fun. My second session involved Year 3 and 4, another appreciative audience.
Zoe and I had a little bit of time between events and headed to Packingham Street, which had come recommended by some of the teachers. After a spot of shopping and some lunch we found Geelong College. Our bookseller for the day was The Little Bookroom in Carlton and Jess, whose mother is Heather from Fairfield Books was looking after things.
Geelong College is currently undergoing a huge renovation and building program. We went to the Middle School library and students from the Junior School as well as some middle school children came to meet me. It was a speedy session over lunchtime. There were lots of enthusiastic readers and one little girl, who has written to me several times, introduced herself. She told me that her sisters and cousins would be attending my event at the bookshop later in the afternoon.
Our next event was in Ocean Grove, about a 25 minute drive to the coast. We made it with minutes to spare and I couldn't believe how packed the shop was. We could barely get inside! It was a wonderful end to the day with Stacey Moore and her lovely daughters, Erica and Alice. Erica is a devoted Alice-Miranda fan and sat front and centre for my talk. It was great to meet her and all of the other children, including the sisters and cousins of the little girl I had met at Geelong College. I also had a delightful moment when I signed a book for a little girl called Josie. I asked her what she'd be doing in the upcoming holidays and she said that she was going to read and write on her blog. I then realised that she was Josie Miaow (well that's her blogging handle) and she and I had been in touch quite a lot last year. It was such a thrill to meet her. I will have to see if Zoe has a photograph on her iPhone! We finished up signing about 6.00pm and drove back to Geelong for an early night.
A Bookish Adventure
I started this blog to document an extended trip to the US and UK in 2012, introducing children to my Alice-Miranda series. It's hard to believe that it's just on four years since we launched the first Alice-Miranda title - and now there are nine books out in Australia with another five still to come. When I first came up with the idea of this precocious seven and a quarter year old, I had no clue that she would take me on such an amazing journey, not only in Australia but also across the world. I visited 37 schools while we were away in 2012 and gave over 80 talks - it was fantastic. In 2013 I've been on lots of new adventures in the UK - visiting schools from London to Southampton, Lancashire, Scotland, Newcastle and back to London again. After that I headed off to meet readers in Singapore. In Australia I've been to Melbourne, Perth, Albany, Alice Springs and Brisbane. There's a new series too - about a gorgeous little girl called Clementine Rose. She and Alice-Miranda don't know each other yet, but they will soon.