My childhood memories of being curled in a corner, in a feather-cushioned chair with another book knowing I could try to start and finish on the same day, resonates with me still. I would never be interrupted, never expected to leave this special place. I had the opportunity to explore different worlds, experience the lives of others by walking in their shoes, being transported every day to another place… ..
Official Launch Speech by special guest, Mrs Mary Wagner:
Good afternoon Ladies and Gentlemen.
First of all, thank you to Emma and Mary-Kate for asking me to launch this book. I am so honoured to be able to do this.
As you are aware this apparently whimsical book is about motherhood. I was chosen to officiate today because I am a mother. Indeed motherhood has been the driving force of my life for the past 58 years. I am not only a mother to 8 children, but also a grandmother to 30, a great grandmother to 4 and a mother-in-law. Motherhood’s tentacles have pulled in a new and diverse direction and introduced me to so many different people. You just never know who these children and grandchildren are going to bring home and what knowledge will be imparted. It’s a complete education and one that I am so blessed to have received. ..
Organising a non-conventional literary event… One step at a time.
It has been an incredible couple of weeks. Normally I can barely process a thought until the beginning of February, and this year, I haven’t had a moment to slowly gather momentum – rather, it has been a case of ‘bam start now as you mean to finish!’
International Read to Me! Day is held every year on March 19th. This means for 2017 it falls on a Sunday. For me personally, this is bliss, as I couldn’t think of anything I would prefer to do than to read… to anyone, but it does present a whole host of issues for participant such as schools.
When it comes to organising an event for this year, in my home ‘village’ of Toowoomba, I couldn’t go past what may be considered a city icon – the big red chair owned by Carleton Upholstery. It is difficult to realise how big the chair is without a person in the photo, but it is three metres in height! I have always wanted to ‘do’ something combining books and this chair, especially with the thought of adding reading champions to the mix… Mmm. ..
I’ve been asked to be part of an exhibition for the Women of Leadership Conference hosts by the Toowoomba Chamber of Commerce. This is what I shared to accompany an image in the exhibition:
‘I’ve almost cracked it’ – a most often heard quote in Emma’s home as she describes to her husband and three daughters how close she feels to exploding through the banal admin’d days and into the land of success, fame and fortune… Well, it is wishful thinking really, but Emma is fortunate to be driven by passion and has a stubborn spirit so when she sought advice and was told by those “in-the-know” that her publishing model was flawed and wouldn’t make money; that the education program she was experimenting with wouldn’t be welcome in any classroom, and that to be self-published is second rate – she was determined to prove the naysayers wrong! ..
Society so often uses the word ‘giving’ and that’s true of Christmas as we shop, wrap and give gifts to each other to celebrate. What if it is more than that? Picture this: Christmas is a timely reminder of our ability to be generous – generous with time, energy AND those lovely gifts. It is a time to bring people together, to share skills and enthusiasm and collaboratively, when we bring this generosity together in a shared space (a family, a workplace, a school…), then this is what we are celebrating. ..
Dearest Writers and illustrators
Trust me when I say congratulations to you ALL especially as it is mind-blowingly scary to share your work, to have it judged and to be included or not included in the winners circle. It is daunting and this makes you the writers and creators of the future. Our whole team was incredibly impressed by the calibre of entries again this year, from Tasmania, Victoria, Queensland and New South Wales. The judges were humbled to be involved and we sincerely thank Jackie Hosking, Romi Sharp, Renee Price, Jenny Graham, Georgie Donaghey and Kaylene Hobson.