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An Interview with NZ Post Children’s Book Awards Finalist Melinda Szymanik

The NZ Post Children’s Book Awards finalists were announced this week, and I was thrilled to see Melinda Szymanik’s wonderful book A Winter’s Day in 1939 was on the list. “Adam is 13 years old and lives with his family on a small farm in rural Poland. It is 1939 and the war has just […]

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Guest Author: Melinda Szymanik on A Winter’s Day in 1939

Today we’re joined by the wonderful Melinda Szymanik, author of the powerful new book, A Winter’s Day in 1939.  Based on her father’s experiences during World War II, A Winter’s Day in 1939 is a story of family, the harsh realities of war, and the fight for survival against the odds. Melinda has written a […]

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A Winter’s Day in 1939 by Melinda Szymanik

Taken from their home, forced to leave their country, put to work in labour camps, frozen and starved, Adam and his family doubt that they will ever make it out alive. Even if they were to get away, they might freeze to death, or starve, or the bears might get them. For the Polish refugees, […]

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Meet our July Star Author – Melinda Szymanik

Our fantastic July Star Author is New Zealand author, Melinda Szymanik.  Melinda writes picture books, short stories and novels for children and young adults.  Her second picture book The Were-Nana won the 2009 NZ Post Children’s Choice Award.  You can also find some of Melinda’s short stories in Pick n’ Mix: Volume 1 and Volume […]

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Write Stories. Win Prizes.

The Fabo Story challenge is back!   What’s Fabo Story you ask?  It’s an ongoing competition where you can enter stories for the chance to win prizes! Fabo Story is Fabulous! ✭ Here’s the website link: http://fabostory.wordpress.com/ ✭ There’ll be a new story contest to enter every couple of weeks. (Or longer if it’s over the […]

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Enter the 400 Words Writing Competition

The Breeze radio station is running its very own writing competition for Kiwi kids aged 13 years and under.  There are two categories: 9 & under and 10 to 13. Entrants have to write a short fictional story of no more than 400 Words.  Your entry will go in the draw for $400 cash and […]

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Celebrating Storyline Festivals around the country

Today is the beginning of the first Storyline Festival this year – in Dunedin. Children’s authors Kyle Mewburn, Adele Broadbent, Mandy Hager, Rachel Stedman, Simon Pollard, and illustrator Robyn Belton, and storyteller Tanya Batt along with International guests: Isobelle Carmody and Rachel Spratt will strut their stuff at Dunedin Central Library from 11 – 4pm. […]

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Celebrate our best authors and illustrators in New Zealand Book Month

New Zealand Book Month starts today and runs for the whole month of March.  It’s the month where we celebrate all the wonderful authors and illustrators that we have in New Zealand.  Here on the Christchurch Kids Blog there will be lots of cool things happening, including: Fast Five Questions with NZ children’s and young […]

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Readings!

Hi everyone, sorry for the silence at my end. I’ve been flat out preparing for the Auckland Storylines Family Day which I attended last weeked, and for the Christchurch Writers’ Festival which is on this week (August 30 – September 2). I had a lovely time in Auckland, talking to kids and adults about Red […]

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What!? It’s the 31st already?

Yikes – I can’t believe the end of July has arrived so quickly. There are loads more things I wanted to say but July has turned out to be a lot busier than I anticipated. I am hard at work on rewriting a novel which I am hoping will be published next year. It is […]

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Figuring out your main characters is just as important as figuring out your plot.

So you have worked out a plot. You know how your story starts and where you would like it to end but before you can begin writing it pays to think about your characters. I have some rules that will help you write great characters and also help you write great stories 1) Don’t have […]

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Tips on plots

A good plot makes for a satisfying story. Good plots have good beginnings, good middles and good ends. They usually start with a problem (or an event that creates a problem) for the main character(s) to solve and  we follow the plot along as the character(s) try to solve the problem or take the steps […]

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A story to read

An important part of writing stories is editing. Even the most famous authors who have written many books go over their work again and again fixing mistakes and making good writing better. At the moment I am rewriting and editing a novel to make it the best it can be. Going through 50,000 words is […]

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Where do ideas come from?

As well as talking about books and reading on this blog I thought it might be useful and fun to talk about writing. Over the next few weeks I’ll share my thoughts on plot and characters and names and all the twiddly bits that you need to think about when you are creating your own […]

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Hi from your July Star Author

Hi there folks (waves). I am feeling very honoured to be this month’s Star Author here at the Christchurch Kids Blog. I’m going to be around all July talking about books, reading and writing. If you have any questions at all about me, about writing or about my books please ask.  I write for children […]

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A great writing challenge for keen writers

Here is a little something I am involved in. If you are a primary or intermediate school student you should check this out. Lots of fun to be had, prizes to win and writing skills to benefit. Go to it y’all. FaBo Story 3 has now launched at http://fabostory3.blogspot.co.nz/ and we’d LOVE you to write with us. […]

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