I'm continuing my theme of introducing you to the amazing authors I met at the CYA Writers Conference and today I'll introduce you to a kids writer with savoir-fair!
In-between workshops I was snacking on my morning tea in the foyer of one of the buildings of QUT when a book launch was announced. Angela Sunde appeared in a cute beret and French-style jacket to announce her new book, Pond Magic.
My attention was had (okay, it might also have had something to do with the raffle for the bottle of French champagne, but I promise I was interested at a literary level). French is hot right now. Images of the Eiffel tower adorn many living room wall, t-shirt or cushion. My youngest (Matilda) is 9 and LOVES the idea of France and writing stories, so I thought this would be a perfect gift for her. As an extra bonus, I approached Angela to have the book signed.
Angela was so sweet when I told her about Tilly's French phase that she included a special inscription:
'Hi Matilda! Bonjour... Vive le burp! Angela Sunde'
Finding trends is a great way of attracting attention to your work from your targeted market (like young girls). This is a way of suggesting a connection between the reader and product (Matilda feels like the story was written just for her).
Another way Angela triggers this familiarity is with the use of reworking a well-known fairytale (in this case: The Frog Prince). Readers see these familiarities and subconsciously read them as coincidences connecting their own lives (E.g. Ooh, I love everything French and so does one of the characters, plus, I remember reading this fairytale and, I like pink stripes - Fate wants me to buy this book!).
Angela also spoke to us during a seminar of new authors. Some of her advice to budding writers (like myself) was:
- Don't be impatient, it may take years but you have to keep putting your work out there.
- Give your character a problem (I've blogged before about how to find conflict for your story).
- Find your market (publishers and agents for your genre).
- Attend festivals and join writers centres (there were some good links that I'll collate with the others I've gathered and post all together soon).
You can find and follow Angela at her own blog:
Or, visit her website:
Angela Sunde at the Pond Magic book launch