A plug for children’s literature

Before finishing my degree and joining MPOW, I was employed for a few years in the office of the NSW Branch of the Children’s Book Council of Australia (CBCA).  While I’ve really enjoyed the switch to higher education and working directly with students and faculty, I do miss all my old connections from the world of children’s lit.  I have so much to learn and do in this new area that I can’t really justify maintaining a professional interest in the other at this point.

However, the NSW CBCA is hosting a 2 day conference later this month and I see from the conference blog today that there are still some registration places left if you hurry (and don’t mind paying the $50 late fee).  I was involved in the administration of this conference at the beginning, as I only left the CBCA early this year so I do feel some sort of tie and thus am shamelessly plugging both the organisation and the conference here.  There is a truly fabulous line up of giants in Australian children’s literature speaking and attending and I’m now kinda sorry that I’m not attending…

I blogged about my experiences working at the CBCA on my personal blog last year.  For a whole range of awkward reasons I can’t currently provide a link to that, so I’ve reproduced my post below:

My rambling wander through employment that most people wouldn’t call a career has recently led me into the children’s literature field. As a parent, I would have said I didn’t know much about kids lit but I knew what I liked…. Boy have I had my eyes opened to all the things I really didn’t know about kids lit!

In the field of Australian children’s literature the names do not come much bigger than this: Julie Vivas, Dee Huxley, Susanne Gervay, Kate Forsyth, Sue Whiting, Barry Jonsberg, Di Bates, Sandy Fussell, Lisa Shanahan, J.A. Mawter, Libby Gleeson; and I’ve met them all in the past year or so. For a reasonably mature, mostly-have-my-act-together 40 something, I can be pretty unprofessionally excited when I meet these people. My kids have read their stuff, heck, I’ve read their stuff. Who has not seen Julie Vivas’ illustrations in Possum Magic? Who has not heard of Libby Gleeson for heaven’s sake? Of course, most of the time my job consists of answering the phone, paying the bills, banking the cheques but every now and then something comes along that leaves me starstruck and I just love it!
image: I love books by wealtheow1 via flickr

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