This past week has been a whirlwind. An incredibly rewarding, lots of fun, meeting loads of children blur. It all started at 4.20am on Monday morning when my alarm started beeping. But I was already awake - worried that I might miss the alarm!
I met Zoe, publicist extraordinaire from Random House at the airport and we headed off to Melbourne. The flight was packed with early morning business travellers, all of whom seemed to have their luggage on board. We had quite a difficult time finding a spot for our banner and Zoe's little suitcase (as opposed to my monster which was in the hold - feeling very lonely I suspect!). We had Alice-Miranda with us too. I knew she fitted in the coat cupboard at the front. She'd been there enroute to Edinburgh in a smaller plane than the one we were on but the flight attendants curled their lips and were unimpressed until I showed them she was really no bother at all. Must have been the early start.
The flight left Sydney on time but as we approached Melbourne the holding pattern was invoked and we spent an extra 30 minutes circling Mount Buller. The minutes were ticking away and Zoe and I were beginning to feel a little anxious about reaching our first event on time.
Fortunately there were no more delays and we hopped into our little Corolla and navigated through the rain to Essesndon Primary where we were met ny Natasha from Book Bonding in Niddrie and now also in Gisborne too and a very enthusiastic audience. The event was fast - not nearly as much time as I would have liked but the children and teachers were lovely and really appreciative that we stopped by. I signed the children's books and we were on our way to Brunswick North, where I had visited the children on my tour in 2012. It was lovely to be greeted by a group of very excited girls and taken up to the Year 5-6 classroom. The children proved a fantastic audience as they had previously. Another whirlwind signing and we headed to the local park for a quick coffee and a snack (I couldn't resist the chocolate brownie) and then we drove around the corner to St Monica's Moonee Ponds, which is in a beautiful array of buildings from the very old to brand new. I met with the children from 3-6 in the hall and had a fantastic time. There were lots of books to sign afterwards. As we exited through the staff room it was lovely to talk to some of the teachers.
We then headed back to deliver some more books to Essendon Primary and pick up an important part of my paraphernalia we had accidentally left there, then it was off to sign some stock at Book Bonding and head into the city.
It was great to see Samantha Ellen Bound who works at Book Bonding and has just had her first book, What the Raven Saw released with Random House. When I have some time it's on my reading list and I have seen great reviews already.
The Little Bookroom is a beautiful shop with a wonderful range of children's books. We then headed to our hotel in St Kilda for some well earned rest.
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.