CKT's Blog

Welcome to the Creative Kids Tales blog. Here you can find all the latest information from the Children's Book industry and lots more related to the Writing World. Check back regularly or even subscribe to your favourite posts, bloggers, categories or even the whole site.

In the Shadow of an Elephant launch.


It's no secret that writing In the Shadow of an Elephant was an emotionally charged experience for me. Allowing raw emotion to flow onto the page is as cathartic as it is confronting. Not only was I working through the grief of losing my mother, but I also wanted to offer a legacy to the girl who had endured her own tragic loss and had been triumph...
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Jacqueline Harvey - CKT Festival Wrap-up by Maria Parenti-Baldey


Perseverance, patience and partnerships: Three critical components to developing a successful writing career. Building your career as a writer is 'a marathon not a sprint,' said International Children's author Jacqueline Harvey at the CKT Festival. False starts and rejections did not stop Jacqueline Harvey from 'getting back on the horse'. Without ...
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Emma Quay – CKT Festival Wrap-up by Jeffery Doherty


Giving Voice, Then Keeping Quiet : the art of making children's picture books.. and letting them go - Emma Quay. On Saturday the 6th of April 2019 I had the pleasure of attending the Creative Kids Tales Writers' Festival. The festival organiser and creator of Creative Kids Tales, Georgie Donaghey, had put together an amazing program of speakers. So...
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Deborah Abela - CKT Festival Wrap-up by Michelle Wanasundera


'Hard, painful, brilliant and intoxicating: why, how, and what you need to invest in to be a successful writer.' This was the second time I heard Deborah Abela speak, and she was just as energetic, humble, and generous with her tips on all things writing. Deborah Abela has written 26 books, including the Stupendously Spectacular Spelling Bee, 'Tere...
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'On Friday fifth of April...' by Fiona Lloyd


'On Friday fifth of April, our merry band did go. To wine and dine and pass the time at Gymea bowlo…'  Ok, enough of that, but wine and dine we did, and a lovely evening was had by all. The pre-festival dinner was a fun addition to last year's festivities. As we happily introduced ourselves, the anticipation for the main event of the weekend w...
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Jackie French - CKT Festival Wrap-up by Hayley Hunkin


As the organiser of this year's sold out festival, I knew being able to deliver any meaningful feedback from the sessions would be impossible. The hope of being able to sit in on a full session, just a dream.I'd be too busy running around ensuring all was running smoothly for our attendees. Instead, I'd need to assign the task of reporting to five ...
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Creative Kids Tales Writers' Festival 2019


It's on again! I know I said there would be only one but seriously look at the amazing line-up for next year's festival. How could I not? Our next theme is INVEST. When you INVEST, you put time/money/effort (usually a combination of these) into something, looking for a return that will be greater than the input. For some, important returns might be...
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The Forever Kid by Elizabeth Mary Cummings reviewed by Georgie Donaghey


There's no doubt, The Forever Kid tugs at the heartstrings and it tugs hard. I was moved by Elizabeth Mary Cummings' latest picture book, The Forever Kid  published by Big Sky Publishing. 'Johnny is not in that photo, but we know he is with us. Johnny is our Forever Kid.' This line just melts your heart. To lose a child is a parent's worst nig...
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Paving the Writing Path by Emma Cameron


When I embarked on a career in the writing industry, I knew it meant stacks of ongoing learning. In the same way being able to cook didn't meant I could open a restaurant, being able to put together sentences didn't mean I could just launch in and become an author and editor. After researching my options, I undertook four certificate courses: Creat...
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Writers' Festivals - a Taste Sensation by Georgie Donaghey


One thing I look forward to each year is the announcement of writers' festivals around the country. I'm like a big kid in a candy store working out which ones I want to sample next. The seduction of speakers I've not yet encountered tempting my creative taste buds. Which festival offers speakers more suited to where I am on my creative journey? Whi...
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KOALA 2017 by Georgie Donaghey.


We are always looking for ways to further support the writing community, and for the past few years, we have been the major sponsor of the KOALA Awards.  KOALA is a non-profit organisation run by volunteers (teacher/librarians, public librarians, teachers, publishers and other supporters of children's literature). Every year, young readers fro...
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Advice from a Newby to a Newby by Allison Howard


  Hello, my name is Allison Howard and an Illustrator/Author on the Creative Kids Tales site and one of the illustrators on the 2017 CKT collective (and one story). I am mainly an illustrator and I have all the fine art degrees you can think of all the way from Diplomas to Masters, I have run the full gamut; (still thinking of doing my PhD but...
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The Torments of Technology by Eileen Magee


Another Word or two from Eileen Magee— still practicing to be a 'famous' Author—in between cups of tea. Savvy Stodginess In happily moving forward with the benefits of technology all these years in my working life, writing life, and personal life, I fear I'm now becoming a stodgy old woman, refusing to embrace change. Not refusing as such, but more...
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Homonyms, homographs, homophones and Australian Language by Lynette Duffy


A homonym is words that sound and are spelt alike , yet have different meanings. Example – fair (pale), fair (market) and fair (unbiased). The fair maiden considered the price was fair when she attended the market fair . A homograph is words that are spelt the same , yet sound different and have different meanings. Example – bow (bend at waist) and...
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David Lewis
Lynnette I found this blog gobsmacking (a word which might also confuse some non English/Australian speakers.) Thanks for sharing... Read More
Thursday, 30 November 2017 14:19
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Old Dog and Batman Moments – How to Get Inspired by Jo Saunders


The other day, I was reading one of my current favourite books to my little group of Year 1 students. The book in question is 'The Red Book' by Beck and Matt Stanton. I love this book. It's hilarious and it always had the kids in stitches. It's based on such a simple but brilliant concept. When I read it, I always feel pangs of envy and always ask ...
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David Lewis
Jo, I totally identified with your comments and the need to connect emotionally with what you are writing, rather than what might ... Read More
Thursday, 30 November 2017 14:27
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Questions People Ask About Writing by Ashley Howland


When people discover that I write books and have been published they love to ask questions. Funnily enough they are often the same questions. I guess it's natural to be curious and I can honestly say I try to answer them as best I can. Sometimes though I feel like guarding my writing and the process. Then I remember that I have learnt so much from ...
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So, That's What Publishers Really Think? by Brydie Wright


In prefacing this blog, I won't pretend that I've been to many Publisher talks yet. I'm aspiring to be traditionally published and I'm new to it all. My questions are naïve and I'm a sponge, soaking in all the advice I can get but aren't we all, as emerging authors? Maybe you've wondered the same things I have, so I've compiled the pearls of wisdom...
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David Lewis
Hello Brydie What good, strong, sensible advice you provide here...and yes, I was pleased to see you making the point that social ... Read More
Wednesday, 15 November 2017 12:01
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Finding Time to Write by Hayley Hunkin


I think one of the biggest problems facing new writers is finding time to write and to revise our work. Very few have the luxury of being able to afford to be full-time writers, and everyone still has to juggle family and friendships as well as work commitments, so time is always a precious commodity, let alone finding time to write. Writing can al...
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David Lewis
A lot of lovely advice and thoughts Hayley...and I was also fascinated to read your interview and discover you spent time as a jou... Read More
Wednesday, 15 November 2017 11:52
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​Manuscript Assessment v Critiques by Artelle Lenthall


I was lucky enough to win a manuscript assessment recently. Aside from obviously being excited I was very interested to know what this would include. You see for many years I have belonged to critique groups both physically with the Eastwood Hills Fellowship of Australian Writers (FAW) and online with Creative Kids Tales. In those critique groups I...
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Recent Comments
Vanessa Ryan-Rendall
Thanks for sharing this! I was starting to think about this...and what you have said makes complete sense. Also - Why do you thin... Read More
Monday, 06 November 2017 19:49
Georgie Donaghey
Thanks for your comments, Vanessa. I think one of the reasons it is getting harder is due to competition. More submissions are flo... Read More
Tuesday, 12 December 2017 08:50
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Secrets to Writing the Best Story Ever (Tips and Tricks from a Faber Writing Academy Course) by Shaye Wardrop


My day started at 4:30am. A three-and-a-bit hour drive along mostly boring highway, and a dash through more Sydney tunnels than I knew existed, and I parked in leafy Crows Nest and made my way to Allen and Unwin. I'd made it. I was at the Getting Published as a Writer for Children course at the Faber Writing Academy . It was a pleasure and an honou...
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