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Whats the Story November 2012

Whats the Story logo for web.
ISSN 11750189: Volume 11: Issue 4: November 2012. 

Books are companions, teachers, magicians, bankers of the treasures of the mind. Books are humanity in print.  ~ Barbara W. Tuchman.
Hamilton children’s literature specialist wins Storylines Betty Gilderdale Award 2012.
Hamilton children’s literature specialist and Southwell School librarian Gerri Judkins is the winner of the 2012 Storylines Betty Gilderdale Award for a distinguished contribution to children’s literature in New Zealand.
Her activities to promote books for children over 20 years have included a key role in organising the 2011 World Final of the Kids Lit Quiz™ held in Hamilton and coaching local teams for the popular annual quiz.
‘Gerri has been a tireless worker for children’s books as a librarian, teacher and judge for more than 20 years,’ says Storylines Trust chairperson Dr Libby Limbrick. ‘Her work for the School Librarians’ Association (SLANZA) has been acknowledged by merit awards. She has also been recognised internationally, presenting papers at seminars in Australia and Italy.
‘Storylines is pleased to honour Gerri with this award as one of the ‘unsung heroes’ of New Zealand literature and literacy teaching.’ 
The award, honouring the author and educator Betty Gilderdale, was instituted in 2000 to acknowledge long-standing service in the wide field of children’s books and literacy. Previous recipients have included author Katerina Te Heikoko Mataira, booksellers John and Ruth McIntyre, creative writing teacher Dr Glyn Strange and literary agent Ray Richards.
A presentation function is being held in Hamilton on 30 November.
For more information, and opportunities to interview Gerri Judkins please contact Vicki Cunningham, Events Manager Storylines.   

Storylines Festival of New Zealand Children’s Writers and Illustrators 18 – 26 August 2012.
The 19th annual Storylines Festival of New Zealand Children’s Writers and Illustrators took place from 18-26 August, creating a literary event that reached thousands of children and their families, who enjoyed the depth and diversity of authors and illustrators taking part. This year’s festival encompassed Family Days in Whangarei, Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch, and the second in Dunedin, a Meet the Authors and Illustrators Special Event in Auckland and workshops for children, young adults and adults in Dunedin, Wellington and Auckland.
The Festival began with the second Dunedin Family Day (18 August) where many local children and their parents visited the Dunedin City Library throughout the day to meet and talk with 10 authors, illustrators, storytellers and performers.
This year the snow and aftershocks abated for the fifth Christchurch Family Day (19 August), held at Catholic Cathedral College. The cold start to the day did not deter children, their parents and many grandparents attending to enjoy the array of book related activities on offer and to meet the eleven visiting guests.
On the same day, the Wellington Family Day (19 August) attracted not only the local community but also from the regions around the city centre including many from Wellington’s multi-cultural communities, attending to meet 15 writers, illustrators and performers. School participation in Wellington continues to grow and strengthen each year. Local author Fleur Beale held a Writing Workshop to a very enthusiastic audience.
The Whangarei Central Library hosted the Northland Family Day (25 August) where the local community, attended. Seven authors, illustrators and performers ensured visitors were engaged throughout the day.
The Auckland Family Day (26 August), held at The Aotea Centre, The Edge were treated to both school and professional performances, book launches, book related arts and crafts, along with Storytellers and competitions.
The National Library Centre, Stanley Street Parnell, hosted six children’s workshops this year (three writing and three illustration), with two of the workshops selling out in advance. An addition of two adults workshops were a wonderful addition offering expert tuition in writing and illustration.
As always, hundreds of volunteers gave their time freely to ensure that the 2012 Festival was a great success up and down the country. We can never thank them sufficiently; we can only repeat, as we have said before, that these events could not take place without them.
~ Vicki Cunningham.
Jean Prior.
Jean Prior. Auckland author Jean Prior passed away in September 2012. Drawing on her Maori heritage to write a rhyming story based on Noah's Ark, Jean was the 2004 winner of the Storylines Joy Cowley Award with The Waka, illustrated by Gavin Bishop and published by Scholastic.
The book was also shortlisted for the New Zealand Post Children's Bo ok Awards in 2006, and was a Storylines Notable Book.
Jean taught textile technology at Intermediate schools for 25 years. She then retrained to become a primary teacher, also completing a Diploma in Children's Literature through the Christchurch College of Education.
She was a member of Storylines management committee in 2006, resigning to take up a teaching position on Great Barrier Island.  As an active member of Kiwi Write4Kidz from its beginning, she will be sadly missed.

From the regions:


My, how time flies – it just seems like yesterday that we had a BookChat evening and the next one is nearly upon us.
The September BookChat was ably chaired by Chris Archbold – thank you Chris.  We were lucky enough to have Trevor Agnew in the group and he has been kind enough to write this piece:
Book Discussion Group: A Few Words By Trevor Agnew 3 Oct 2012.  
All my life I have found great pleasure in books, and it has always been my intention to join a book discussion group. Until now, I have never found a group prepared to take books for young people seriously.
Last month I found my ideal group. Te Tai Tamariki The Children’s Literature Trust offered a chance to join interested people in a discussion on The Duck in the Gun, by Joy Cowley and Robyn Belton, as well as When the Empire Calls by Ken Catran. We had a lovely wide-ranging discussion, with all kinds of surprising bits of information about both books bobbing up. It was an evening that was of great benefit to school librarians and teachers but could be enjoyed by anybody. It was informative. It was relaxed. It was fun. It was my ideal book chat group.
There was only one drawback – not many people came. In fact, if we don’t get better numbers, there may not be any more of these gatherings.
As Trevor has said, the numbers coming to the BookChats so far have been very low. Have we got the time wrong, or would a different venue be more suitable? Now that we have no gallery and organising exhibitions in Christchurch is more difficult, we are trying these events to keep in touch with our supporters.  Please, let us know what you think. For those of you not in Christchurch, please feel free to have your own BookChats – let us know how they go.


For the first time this year we held the Storylines Festival Family Day in the Michael Fowler Centre which proved, on the most part, a very accessible place. For some of the children the highlight was being able to perform on a real stage in the enormous auditorium with spotlights beaming down on them and  the heady feeling of the almost perfect acoustics. Of course they couldn’t see that that audience, obviously, was not enormous. We were so lucky to have Fifi Colston as the ever inventive, ever generous person in charge of the craft section of the event.  

The whole place seemed to resound with the plink plank plonk of ukuleles made from plastic trays and rubber bands (to tie in with Iris’s ukulele by Kathy Taylor) and we are sad to think that after all this time Fifi will not be part of the committee in 2013. Upstairs there were many art activities organised by people like Harriet Bailey and Ruth Paul. This year we had an event for much older readers (and adults) when Fleur Beale, Anna Mackenzie and Barbara Else talked about writing for young adults and this was a popular move. And there were stories of course. Children looking through books and listening to them being read aloud in the Scholastic Books Out Loud area, and sometimes buying them from the three bookshops.

Now, like everyone else involved round the country, we are already planning for Storylines 2013 – suitably far away at this moment....

Storylines awards
The judges for various Storylines awards have received the entries. This year the numbers were:

Vicki Cunningham is a hero!
Heritage Hotels have recently had a project for their staff to nominate an Everyday Hero. An Everyday Hero according to their criteria is someone who goes beyond the expectations of her/his role.
Susan Gibson of The Heritage contacted Libby Limbrick, suggesting that she nominate Vicki Cunningham, the Storylines Events Manager... a suggestion Libby endorsed wholeheartedly. 
Vicki is one of the inaugural Heritage Everyday Heroes winners!
Congratulations Vicki... you are our Everyday Hero, too! Thank you for always going ‘that extra mile’.

Subscription special rate!
As this is an expensive time of year we are offering you the opportunity to pay your subscription for 6 months rather than a year. If you have not paid earlier in the year your subscription will be reinstated so that you can access the Christmas buying list and can pay members rates to attend Margaret Mahy Day next year. If you are paying by Internet banking remember to email the Membership Secretary, so that we know you have paid. All payments are acknowledged by email so if you have paid on-line and have not heard back please contact the Membership Secretary.

Your chance to purchase an original artwork:
Lyn Kriegler is currently selling original illustrations ($40 onwards) to go towards funding work at The Children’s Project Trust in Andhra Pradesh, Southern India.
Lyn and Tom will be heading back there early December working with these children who have been rescued from dire circumstances and are now eagerly responding to the safe and encouraging environment of a registered home school that’s offering them an education beyond their wildest dreams. She’s got many of these illustrations up on her facebook page.
Great gifts for our families  supporting Lyn and Tom (and others) working with these children
Find out more via: Lyn’s facebook, or email.

Members Only
Log on to our website using your existing membership number, or your newly reset password if you have already visited our new website, to view the latest booklist: Books for Christmas Giving. This is only accessible to members. If you wish to become a member, join here. If you have trouble logging on, contact our Membership Secretary to check your membership is up-to-date, via email, or contact us via the Contact Us form.


The Storylines Trust and Foundation together comprise New Zealand's only national organisation working year-round specifically to promote children's and young adult literature through an annual Festival in six regions, author awards, publications, advocacy and other activities ... 



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Storylines welcomes support for all its activities and events. Whether as sponsors or as volunteers for Festival events or task groups, your contribution (large or small) towards helping children grow up to love books and stories will be hugely valued ...