My life as a children's author while juggling being a mum, a wife and professional volunteer. (Sometimes it gets complicated)

Monday, 3 September 2018

Katapult - Edition 9 - September, 2018



Welcome to Katapult!

I am writing this today in between showers. I have a glorious sunbeam spraying across my desk. Everything outside is wet and shiny from a morning of glorious rain. I love waking up on wet days knowing I can hide in my studio and write all day. Hopefully some of this rain is reaching you too!

Rainy days + 6 month old puppy = mess!

So what’s been happening at my desk since the last time we had a chat? Book Week celebrations!

What’s Up?

1) CBCA Book Week Awards announced:

Here are this year’s winners of the CBCA Book Week Awards. They were officially announced on Friday, 17th August. I picked Rodney Loses It to win. This is a hilarious book. But honesty, all these books are beautiful. Go grab a copy!

2) Book Week School Visits:
I had a wonderful time dropping by some lovely schools this year for Book Week. Thanks for having me Lyn, Amy, Emily, and Maria! More detail of each visit was shared on my social media. Go have a look!

a) Holy Spirit Infants School, Abermain - K-2 author/illustration presentation 



b) Alphabet Cottage, Castle Hill - storytime with the toddlers and author   
            presentation with the preschoolers


c) Harry Hartog, Green Hills - storytime


d) New Lambton Public School - K-2 author/illustrator presentations and writing and illustration workshops



e) St Mary’s Primary School, Warners Bay - K-2 author presentation

Book Week reminds all creatives (authors, illustrators, book designers, editors, publishers) who work in isolation why we do it. So much inspiration!

My children were asked to dress up as pirates or explorers as part of their school Book Week presentations. Here we have Link (explorer) from the game Zelda, and Uma (pirate) from the movie Descendants 2. I know they aren't from books but they had fun anyway.


3) Movie Making Workshops at Apple:

I had a few lessons on how to improve my movie making skills at Apple earlier this month. I learnt more about editing sound. I also bought a professional microphone and a tripod for my phone. 

I made a ‘sneak peek’ video of our upcoming book, Up To Something for the kids we visited during Book Week. It included videos of Kirrili drawing and how she adds colour to sketches. I can’t make this one public yet - sorry! I had to ask the infants kids to make sure they left their phones in their pockets as no photography was allowed as I played it. They thought I was mad :)

I have grand plans of making more movies soon - trailers etc. I love being creative using technology and I love learning new things.

4) Puppy Update: 

Ivy had her half birthday on the 28th August and she is still a master of chewing things! My picture book manuscript about her has been sent to a professional editor now. Watch this space.



Upcoming Events

CBCA NSW Branch Inc Newcastle Sub-branch Annual Childrens' Event

Stories After Dark - Find your treasure! 

This Saturday 8 September 2018, 5pm - 7pm. 
BBQ Sausage Sizzle available from 4.30pm

This event is a magical fun-filled night with treasure, craft, music, stories & stars. Kids will be able to explore the Newcastle Region Library after dark and meet our special guest, award winning illustrator Liz Anelli. Other local authors and illustrators include Jess Black (Keeper of the Crystals), Lynn Jenkins (Lessons of a Lac), Gwynneth Jones (Don’t Think About Purple Elephants), Deb Kelly (Ruby Wishfingers), Kirrili Lonergan (Ollie’s Treasure), ME!!!! (Dandelions), Paul Russell (Grandma Forgets) and Ant Wood (Flaming Charli). 

Kids can come dressed in PJs or pirate costumes. This event is suitable for ages 3 - 7 years. Each child will leave with a ‘treasure’ thanks to our sponsor, Charlestown and Newcastle Toyota. Free but bookings are essential.

An article about it in last Saturday’s paper is here.


Publishing Update

1) Kirrili has been working very hard on the illustrations for Up To Something. The illustrations are almost complete. YOU SHOULD SEE THEM! Such a joy to have been able to watch them progress from roughs to final artwork. The colours are magical! If you follow Kirrili on Instagram, you may have seen a few sneak peeks. OMG is all I can say!

2) Cheri has continued to work on the illustrations for No Baths Week too. I have seen all of the roughs now. Gosh I love this book! You should see our mud pie stack! OMG! She is so clever. I’m now making sure the text is still working with the illustrations. I plan to make a couple of minor edits as some words aren’t needed now it’s illustrated. I can’t wait to see these illustrations in colour! Offical release date coming soon.

Anything to Share?

SCBWI Conference is on in Sydney 24-26th Feb, 2019. Tickets are on sale here! Hurry!
I’ll be the MC for a panel called 'Let’s talk vision! Are your story elements all working together?' with some well known publishers. I can’t wait! 

Recent Book Purchase/s?

Funny Kid - Prank Wars by Matt Stanton
Pig the Pug by Aaron Blabey
Liars - The Truth App Book 1 by Jack Heath


Where can you find me on social media?

I’ve made it easy. Just click on the live links below and like or follow me.

Website and blog: www.katrinamckelvey.com

Feel free to leave a comment or drop me an email: author@katrinamckelvey.com

I’d love to hear from you!



It's very hard to get cranky at this bundle even after she's chewed computer cords, expensive reading glasses, Apple Watch bands, charger cords, joggers, Barbie dolls, furniture legs, some of my favourite brooches, rocks, sticks, grass runners, towels, and even parts of our house! 

You'd think we haven't bought her any approved chew toys after reading this list! 

Hmmm ...