Category Archives: Local Book Shops

Book Links Event News for 2017! Renew your membership now to be a part of our stellar year to come!

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Happy New Year!  We hope you had a fantastic Festive Season with family and friends!

2017 is looking to be a stellar year for Book Links, our members, our friends, and children all over the place.  Read on to find out about some of our events and projects for the coming year!

And remember to renew your membership for 2017 HERE!

Romancing the Stars x 3

We are hosting three Romancing the Stars events this year!  Come and speed-date some of Australia’s best, and South East Queensland local, children’s and YA authors and illustrators to find out what they have been, and are, working on!

For information and booking details for the Brisbane Event, click HERE!

For information and booking details for the Gold Coast Event, click HERE!

For information and booking details for the Sunshine Coast Event, click HERE!

Write Links Writing Workshops

We have a full year booked for our Write Links Writing Workshops!  Including paid workshops with Richard Newsome, Kerry Brown, Deborah Abela, and Christine Bongers.  For a full list of all the Workshops for 2017, click HERE!

Narelle Oliver Lecture

Libby Gleeson will be presenting the Narelle Oliver Lecture in Children’s Literature in June, watch our social media and website for more details.

StoryArts Festival Ipswich – Narelle Oliver Exhibition

We are honoured to announce that we will be presenting a comprehensive exhibition of the Late Narelle Oliver’s works in partnership with StoryArts Festival Ipswich.

Travelling Suitcases – DVD’s

We will also be beefing up our Travelling Suitcases to ensure that they are all utilised to their full potential, and we will also be offering DVD’s of all our featured authors and illustrators for sale, watch this space.

What is the Romancing the Stars event all about?

Hello everyone!

It seems that there’s been a lot of interest in our Romancing the Stars event.  In fact, for 2016, it will be plural, eventS.  Yes!  We are having two Romancing the Stars events in 2016!  The Brisbane event will be held on Thursday, February 18.  And on Friday, 26 February, there will be an event on at The Sunshine Coast.  Watch this space for more details.

To find out a little more, just check out this video:

What’s on in 2016? Children’s Literature Events Calendar.

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2016 looks to be a very promising year!  Check out the calendar below for all the details of Children’s Literature Events in and around Brisbane, and QLD.


2016 Calendar

Another Reminder of How Awesome Romancing the Stars can be – book your tickets now to avoid missing out!



Have you booked your tickets yet?  They’re selling fast, and as we have a limited amount of tickets, make sure you book now so you don’t miss out!


Hi everyone!  Not long until Romancing the Stars 2015.  Check out these two short films, skilfully put together by Peter Allert, from the 2012, 2013, and 2014 events to see what Romancing the Stars is all about.  Then, book your tickets!  You can find the booking details here.

Romancing the Stars 2014

Romancing the Stars 2012 & 2013 Highlights

Sharing Stories – Connect to Reading with Authors & Illustrators – a Book Week Event for Kids aged 10-13

Sharing Stories 2014

Connect to Reading

with authors and illustrators

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An event for children aged

10-13 years


Saturday 23 August

from 1:30pm – 4:30pm at

Bulimba State School Hall

Oxford Street, Bulimba

Cost $15

Listen and talk with:

Michael Gerard Bauer, Alison and Nicholas Lochel, Chris Bongers, Andrew King, Samantha Wheeler, Stephen Axelsen, Pat Flynn, Jesse Blackadder, Pamela Rushby and Peter Carnavas…who’ll be singing too!

PLUS Afternoon Tea & Quiz!

Riverbend Books will be selling books written by the authors and illustrators present

Book early – only 100 places available

Maximum 10 students per school

Sharing Stories – poster & booking form

Sharing Stories – booking form

CBCA QLD Branch Event – Isobelle Carmody in conversation with Rosie Borella

Black Cat Books

The Children’s Book Council of Australia – QLD Branch is hosting a very special event at Black Cat Books & Café in Paddington on Sunday February 23 at 11am.  Come along to hear these amazingly innovative ladies talk about writing, first novels and all things in between.

Download the brochure here – Isobelle Carmody & Rosie Borella

SCBWI’s “Inside Story” – Brisbane Participates in an International Event


 The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators held the Inaugural “Inside Story Event” on November 2, 2013.    The event was held in 12 cities worldwide including Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne here in Australia.   The event had two purposes; to provide an opportunity for young readers, teachers, librarians and children’s book lovers to become acquainted with new releases and the ‘Inside Story’ behind each book; and to build traffic and sales for independent bookshops.
Black Cat Books and Café in Paddington – avid supporters of local authors, illustrators and children’s literature –  hosted fourteen of QLD and Northern NSW’s children’s authors and illustrators.   The event was skilfully organised by Angela Sunde with the help of Pamela Rushby.  Angela was also the MC and kept the authors, illustrators and audience on their toes.  Each author and/or illustrator was given 3 minutes to share the ‘inside story’ behind their latest release.  There were also prizes, opportunities to speak with the authors and illustrators, and the creamiest cake that has even been seen.
Read on to find out the ‘inside story’ behind each author and/or illustrator’s latest release:
Angela Sunde
Angela is the author of Pond Magic, published by Penguin Australia.  Pond Magic is a light-hearted fantasy about a 12 year old girl. Her name is Lily Pad and she can’t stop burping. She is concerned she is turning into a frog, and really is, but you must read the book to find out more.  The publishing ‘Inside Story’ is that Angela was at a picture book workshop and a chair fell on her head.  Due to this, the presenter gave her a one-on-one where Angela pitched the idea for Pond Magic.  The workshop presenter loved it and contacted Penguin to say that the book just had to be published.
Stephen Axelsen
Stephen is the author and illustrator of The Nelly Gang, a historical graphic novel.    He won the Aurealis Award in 2005.  The ‘Inside Story’ behind The Nelly Gang is that Stephen has a passion for Australian History and he has had comic strips published in the School Magazine for 30 years.
Katherine Battersby
Katherine Battersby is the critically acclaimed author and illustrator of Squish Rabbit which was nominated for the 2012 Crichton Award, was a CBCA Notable Book in Australia and was named a CBC Children’s Choice Award in the USA.
Katherine has a boundless passion for rabbits, but explained that due to QLD Law, she can not own one unless she gets a magician’s license, which is something that she has considered.
Katherine gave us 3 secret as the ‘inside story’ behind the Squish books.  Secret 1 – the idea.  Squish sleeps in a stripey sock because Katherine is obsessed with stripey socks.  She even writes in stripey socks. Secret 2 – Brave Squish Rabbit is not too brave.  Katherine is actually afraid of chickens as they have sharp beaks and beady eyes that watch you. She explained that her neighbours chickens watch her as they write. Secret 3 – the cover of the book.  Part of it glows in the dark. The fireflies on the back, the stars on the back.
Christina Bollenbach
Christina is originally from Germany.  She is the author & illustrator of  How to catch a Monster.  As a parent, she believes that kids send us on a journey into the future, and back into the past of our own childhood. That they put us into a time travelling rocket to go back into our own childhood.  One of Christina’s children is scared of monsters.  She told him a story about monsters to calm him. He began to ask questions.  What did the monster look like? What did the boy look like? What toys did he play with?  Christina initially did some illustrations for the story idea.  She was published after being asked for a manuscript after being in the Australian Illustration Awards
Judy Paulson
Judy has an early childhood background with fine arts.   She won 3rd place in the CYA Picture Book Competition in 2010 and 2nd in 2011.  She is the author illustrator of Baby Tawnies.   The ‘Inside Story’ behind the book is that she was inspired by a family of  tawny frogmouths sitting outside her house during the winter. One season she watched a pair of baby tawnies grow.  As she feels she can not draw, she made the Tawnies out if felt.  She then photographed the felt tawnies. Judy got published by getting a contract with Random House at the CYA Conference in 2011.
Michelle Worthington
Michelle Worthington’s picture book, The Pink Pirate, was a finalist in the International Books Awards 2013.  Yellow Dress Day was a finalist for the CBCA Chrichton Award in 2013
The ‘Inside Story’ behind The Pink Pirate is that it was written for her niece as Michelle believed that there are not enough books written where the girl is the hero. The Dad is based on her brother, who does have a ginger beard. The bad guy based on brother’s best friend who is a drummer in a heavy metal band.
Jennifer Poulter
Jennifer Poulter is an award winning, internationally published author and poet.  Her latest picture book  Toofs is about a wolf family.  In Toofs, the baby wolf bites all the other family members!  The book incorporates strategies for helping families with biting kids.  The ‘Inside Story’ behind Toofs is that Jennifer’s daughter is a child care worker. She told stories about kids biting other kids.  They decided to do a book based on the stories with strategies for families to get through the issue.
Christine Bongers
Christine is the acclaimed author of Dust and Henry Hoey Hobson which was shortlisted for numerous awards including CBCA Book of the Year for Younger Readers.
Drongoes is her latest offering.  The ‘Inside Story’ behind Drongoes is that Christine once said to a you’re a dill.”  The child asked, “what’s a dill?”  “Like a drongo”, was Christine’s reply.  The child didn’t know what a drongo was either.  This inspired Christine to write a book about the language of the bush which she finds fascinating.
In the 1920’s a horse was named Drongo after the very active bird. In 37 races, he never actually won. His name became synonymous with someone who tries and tries but is never going to get there.  A book about trying to win against the odds and Aussie mateship.
Julie Nickersen
Julie is the author of the Pippa’s Perfect Series in Penguin’s Aussie Nibbles Series.  In book 3, Pippa’s Perfect Picnic, Julie wanted to bring in new friends of Pippa’s, but the publishers wanted friends from the first 2 books.  The Publisher wanted a pony as lots of little girls like ponies.  The story changed as different elements were added and subtracted based on the publisher’s requests.  Finally the surprise element came and the story was published, but we didn’t get to hear about it, we need to read the book.
Samantha Wheeler
Samantha Wheeler is the author of Smooch and Rose, a book about a koala and a very brave girl that stands up for what she believes in. Sam loves sharing stories about how to protect koala.  Sam got her idea from wanting to expose something that she and others didn’t know about.  She used to drop off her daughter to school and spot a koala in the paddock. One day they turned up and the paddock was cleared of trees, no koala.  So the story came to be about a girl who had to do something about it.  Sam grew up on a farm.  She always drove past a strawberry farm. Sam found a story about a 7 year old who raised $20000 to help koalas.  This inspired her to write the character of Rose.  The animals in the book are based on animals that her family had owned such as the horse and dog.
Dimity Powell
Dimity has won many awards for her short stories.  Her debut novel PS Who Stole Santa’s Mail? is a junior novel for children.  The story started life as a study assignment, inspired by a newspaper article about taking away the post box for Santa on the Gold Coast. Dimity asked “what if?” as authors always do.  Dimity is obsessed with Christmas.  Believing in magic and wanting something so much, and then getting  it against all odds is the best thing possible.
Candice Lemon Scott
Candice writes for both children and adults.  She has published three books for children and her latest release, Silver the Silly Sorcerer,  was published in New Frontier’s Little Rocket Series.
Candice explained, as part of the ‘Inside Story’ behind Silver the Silly Sorcerer that she starts every story with a Person, a Place and a Problem.  For Silver the Silly Sorcerer it was “Silver the Sorcerer was stuck in Muddy Muck’.  Candice loves magic, and the story was inspired by a bad circus experience and a fire trick gone wrong in Nepal.
Pamela Rushby
 Pamela is a Winner of the Ethel Turner Prize,  2 CBCA Notable books and a QLD Literary Award.  She writes historical fiction from female a perspective.
Flora’s War was inspired by a picture of a hospital on a merry go round in Egypt as there was not enough room for all the wounded.  Flora’s War is based on all the wounded soldiers coming into Cairo, and the experience of a young nurse.  Pamela discovered that there were  hospital wards in a local theme park. There was a ward in ghost house and a surgery in the ticket area.  Flora is 16, she wears latest fashion, dances modern dances and can even drive.  She volunteers to drive an ambulance, gets engaged and something happens, but as like all authors like to say, we’ll have to read the book to find out what happens next.
Peter Taylor
Peter is an author & calligrapher.  In 1988 one if his pieces was given to the Queen.
The ‘Inside Story’ behind Calligraphy for Greeting Cards and Scrap Booking began with a visit to the UK.  His aunt in England was 90 in 2010.  Peter stayed on and went to a book fair.  This was held at the time of the Volcanic Ash debacle.  Many people didn’t make it to the book fair.  Many publishers had lots of free time to speak to authors. Peter talked with publishers about the competition for Practical Calligraphy, another one of his books. He spoke with  Master Craftsman Publishers who were very interested in a book about calligraphy for greeting cards and scrapbooking.   They wanted 30 000 words and more than 300 illustrations.  The book was released in 2013.
The morning was finished off with the handing out of a large number of raffle prizes, all generously donated by the authors and illustrators.  The cutting of the inaugural “Inside Story” cake was a highlight, and left many people licking the cream off their fingers for a while afterwards.
Congratulations to all the QLD Branch of SCBWI on a brilliant event.  We look forward to many more.