My middle grade novel ‘Sea Glass’ has made the shortlist for the 2023 Reading’s Children’s Prize. I’m not only completely overjoyed by this news, I’m also completely blown away, honoured, and humbled, to find myself in such esteemed company.
Now in its 10th year, The Readings Children’s Prize is presented to the best contribution to Australian children’s literature from an emerging author. This is a bit of a bucket list moment for me, as I’ve followed the Prize for years, and, well *sniff*
Congratulations to the amazing authors on the shortlist. My biggest thanks to Readings, and of course to my publisher Wombat Books. #LoveOzMG
As writers (indeed, as practitioners of any form of art) it’s often too easy to dwell on what we haven’t achieved, rather than what we have accomplished.
I’m guilty of this. I often raise my creative bar impossibly high, and set myself productivity goals and benchmarks of success that simply don’t align with my work and family life. As a consequence, I’m often left feeling like I’ve failed myself and my art. Silly, huh? I’m working on it.
My two words for 2023 are: Balance and Vitality. I aim to use their themes to underscore all aspects of my life this year, and help guide my intentions and mindset.
Many writers post a list of their ‘year in review’ and I think it’s a great way to overthrow any negative feelings you might hold about your personal output. You might not have set the world on fire (according to your own goals), but you’ve written, damnit! And maybe, along the way, and in between the rejections, you’ve had a few wins, in whichever shape they take.
As we move into 2023, my creative advice is simply this:
Do not compare yourself to others.
Remember, a high tide raises everyone’s boat.
Make the art you love, regardless of whether it’s deemed ‘commercial’ enough. Writing to a trend or market when it’s not your jam does not a happy writer make. When you attempt to shoe horn your work into a space and place not carved from authenticity it will also show in your writing.
With that said, below is my 2022 Writing Year in Review. Despite my inner critic telling me otherwise, it’s actually been a very positive year.
Why not make a list of your writing activity from 2022? Even if it’s just a word count. You’ll be surprised at what you’ve achieved.
Happy New Year to you all, and of course happy reading, happy writing, and happy days for 2023.
Awards and Honours
Finalist – Ditmar Awards – Best Collected Work
Finalist – Ditmar Awards – Best Novella / Novelette
Finalist – Aurealis Awards – Best Fantasy Novella Finalist – Australian Shadows Award – Long Fiction Category Finalist – Australian Shadows Award – Poetry Category
I’m thrilled to announce my middle grade novel ‘Sea Glass’ has been signed by long-established Australian publishing legends, Wombat Books.
Here’s what you can expect…
When eleven-year-old Cailin’s mother takes a contract job on Victoria’s eastern coast, Cailin’s holiday plans are ruined. Worse, they’re staying at her estranged grandfather’s shack at Whitefoam Cove. Cailin barely remembers him, let alone knows him.
Grandpa doesn’t have Wi-Fi, and his television is older than him. Memories of her father are everywhere and, to make matters worse, she’s left her cricket bat at home. How will she make the team now? And how will she keep in touch with her best friend, Josie? It’s going to be the worst summer ever.
But life with Grandpa proves to be anything but boring. There’s treasure to be found at Whitefoam Cove! But just when cricket-mad Cailin and Grandpa finally feel like they’re making a connection, disaster strikes…and Cailin knows it’s all her fault.
Sea Glass is a coming-of-age family drama for readers aged 7-12 that explores how, despite difference and disaster, a generational gap is bridged. This contemporary Australian middle grade novel celebrates the importance of family and environment…and proves you’re never too old to go treasure hunting.
Sea Glass will be released 1 March, 2023. Click here to pre-orderyour copy.