Have patience, my writer friends…

May 14, 2017 at 2:34 pm | Posted in children's literacy, Rooster story, writing competitions | Leave a comment
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I’m almost there! I’ve been super busy judging the fabulous entries in my Really Riveting Rooster Tale Clever Competition over the last VERY busy fortnight and I’m just about finished! So hang in there – the results should be out in the next 24 hours – COCKADOODLE – DOOOOOOO!

Three fabulous days at Shatin Junior School!

March 1, 2017 at 6:04 pm | Posted in Chinese New Year, School visits, Shatin Junior School | 2 Comments
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A huge thank you to Karen Hubbard and all the lovely staff and students at Shatin Junior School, for hosting me at their Book Week this week! I spent three full, funny and fabulous days with the kids doing a host of story readings and workshops! Everyone from Year One to Year Six met my latest character in The Chinese Calendar Tales – that cocky but loveable Rickshaw Rooster- in a fun story reading full of fascinating historical facts and cockadoodledoos! Then I spent two inspiring days with the Year 5s (who learned How to Become A Great Writer) and the Year 4s (who learned How to Write a Riveting Story)! Five things to remember, for ALL you kids who want to write fabulous stories:

  1. Free up your leisure time!
  2. Radically reduce the time you spend on digital games and devices!
  3. Radically increase the time you spend reading great books!
  4. Plan your stories before you write them!
  5. Enter my latest Clever Competition right away!

And you’ll be well on the way to becoming truly GREAT writers!

Hello Singapore – and thank you CIS Lakeside!

May 25, 2016 at 7:27 am | Posted in Chinese Calendar Tales, Chinese Zodiac, School visits, Singapore schools, workshops | Leave a comment
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It’s fabulous to be back in Singapore! Yesterday I had a wonderful day with the Grade 4s, 5s and 6s at beautiful big Canadian International School Lakeside, where I introduced the kids to my Chinese Calendar Tales, and especially to my mischievous Ming Kee Monkey and my dashing Dark Horse! We finished the day with the Grade 4s learning all about How to Write a Riveting Story! I look forward to all your entries in my next Clever Competition! Huge thanks to the lovely Lisa Miller, Head of Senior Library, for being such a kind and welcoming host!

Thank you MLC!

February 24, 2016 at 6:54 pm | Posted in Chinese Calendar Tales, Chinese New Year, Chinese Zodiac, Melbourne schools, Monkey story, School visits, Uncategorized, Writing competitions for kids | Leave a comment
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A big THANK YOU to the lovely Tracey Ricchini, Junior School Teacher Librarian, and the fabulous girls and staff at Methodist Ladies College, for a wonderful day today! It was so good to see you all again, and to introduce you to my maverick Ming Kee Monkey, as well as the rare and exotic plants and creatures of the jungles of Yunnan Province…not to mention Emperor Taizong of Tang, the extraordinary Buddhist explorer Xuanzang, and the Legend of the Monkey King and the Journey to the West! You made a fantastic audience; thank you so much for your enthusiasm and interest! I look forward to receiving LOADS of MLC entries in my Clever Competition!

Exactly 1 month to go to enter the Mischievous Monkey Story Competition!

February 24, 2016 at 4:34 am | Posted in Monkey story, Uncategorized, Writing competitions for kids | Leave a comment
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You’d better get cracking! There is just ONE MONTH to go to get your entry into my Mischievous Monkey Story writing competition! Click on the Clever Competitions button above for all the details!

 

A fabulous day at Kingston International School, Kowloon Tong!

February 16, 2016 at 4:40 pm | Posted in Chinese Calendar Tales, Hong Kong Schools, Uncategorized, writing competitions, Writing competitions for kids | Leave a comment
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Today  I had the best day doing workshops with Upper Primary at Kingston International School in Kowloon Tong! The Grade 4s unscrambled limericks and identified haikus and completed the gaps in a horrifying poem called Let’s Destroy the School in my Introduction to Poetry Workshop! The Grade 5s and 6s learned all about How to Write a Riveting Story that will glue the reader’s nose to the page, and left with a fab Story Planning sheet to plan their next stories! And some of them even promised to use them to plan their entry into my current Clever Competition (see tab at the top of this page!). I can’t wait to read their entries! Huge thanks to the lovely Jennifer Shaw for hosting me today! Photos to come!

The Results are Out in my Hair-Raising Halloween Poem Competition!

November 27, 2015 at 4:43 pm | Posted in Writing competitions for kids | Leave a comment
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Aaaaagh! Eeeeek! Brrrrr! ! That’s how I’ve been feeling while judging all the entries in my Hair-Raising Halloween Poem Competition! It’s been absolutely terrifying – and not just because of the large number of entries! There were a huge 127 entries this time, from 27 schools in Hong Kong, Singapore, Melbourne, Sydney, Western Australia, Seattle US, and the UK! There were even entries from whole classes! And the entries were all so gruesomely great, making my job even harder! But at last I’ve come to my decision and the top ten entries in each Category have just been posted on my Clever Competitions page – so click on the Clever Competitions link above for a hair-raising literary experience! Special congratulations to Madeline Painter, Grade 3, Stamford International School, Singapore (Winner of the Years One to Three Category) and Aria Fafat, Grade 5, Canadian International School Lakeside Campus, Singapore (Winner of the Years Four to Six Category), for their magnificent entries. They’ll each receive a free signed copy of one of my books!

 

 

Mwahaha! My Hair-Raising Halloween Poem Competition for Primary School Kids starts TODAY!

October 5, 2015 at 11:25 am | Posted in Writing competitions for kids | Leave a comment
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Mwahaha! Halloween is coming fast, and all the fun of trick or treating, pumpkin lanterns, cobwebs, spiders, ghosts, witches, haunted houses, sweet treats and scary costumes for kids, and, of course, dental bills for Mum and Dad! It’s been five long years since our last Halloween writing competition – so I think it’s high time for another one! You can write any kind of poem, provided it’s about Halloween! I’ll be looking for fantastic vocabulary, original ideas, lots of detailed descriptions and that special CHILL FACTOR to make the hairs rise on the back of my neck! You’ve got just SIX WEEKS to get your entries in this time: the deadline date is Sunday 15th November 2015. Go to my Clever Competitions page above for all the rules and information!

Please be patient my friends!

September 12, 2015 at 9:30 am | Posted in Writing competitions for kids | 3 Comments
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It’s been a funny old week this week, with a sick daughter and a sick dog, and lots of visits to doctors and vets (don’t worry, it’s nothing too serious)! So I’ve got a little bit delayed in getting the judging done for the Three Chinese Characters Story Competition! I’m sailing full steam ahead now, and hope to publish the results this weekend. So please bear with me – it won’t be long now!

THE RESULTS ARE OUT IN MY SHAGGY SHEEP COMPETITION!

April 17, 2015 at 12:48 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment
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COMPETITION NO. 24: A SHAGGY SHEEP POEM!

Cute Ram

Wow! I’ve just finished judging a grand total of 175 fantastic entries from 32 schools on 3 different continents in my Shaggy Sheep Poem competition! If I read about one more sheep or ram or goat. I’m going to start bleating VERY loudly! The entries ranged from knock knock jokes to riddles to haikus to limericks to cinqains to rhyming couplets to some really good free verse! And I really loved all your sheep, rams and goats – they were a hairy, noisy lot on the whole but quite adorable, just like my handsome Rodney Ram! Special congratulations to Nicholas Ng from Shanghai United International School in Hongqiao, Shanghai, who won First Place in the Grade 1 to 3 Category, and Ivana Wong from Kowloon Junior School in Hong Kong who won First Place in the Grade 4 to 6 Category. Go to my Clever Competitions page right away to read all the winning entries, as well as some fantastic Special Mentions!

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