Anna Fienberg has written more than forty well-loved books for children and young adults. Her career began when she worked as an editor at School Magazine, a NSW children’s literary journal, which published her first story. She has won many awards for her novels and picture books, including the Children’s Book Council of Australia award for The Magnificent Nose and other Marvels, the Victorian Premier’s Prize for Ariel, Zed and the Secret of Life, and a CBCA Honour Award for Horrendo’s Curse and Borrowed Light, an American Library Association Best Book for Young Adults.
Anna writes for all ages, and her Minton series, together with Figaro and Rumba tales are perfect for younger children.
Anna’s ever-popular Tashi books, illustrated by Kim Gamble, have been published all over the world, and to celebrate Tashi’s 25th anniversary last year, Allen & Unwin created a special hardback edition of the original book, together with brand new picture books Alphabetical Tashi, My First Tashi 123 and Colours, all illustrated by Kim Gamble and his daughters, Arielle and Greer.
Tashi and the Stolen Forest is her new book in the Tashi series.
Anna’s Author Talks for Schools and Libraries
I will talk books – my favourite subject! I’ll discuss the books I love to read and write, and how imagination is the essential ingredient in both. I’ll reveal the hidden lives of my characters, where they spring from, how their feelings and actions are shaped into a story, and what it’s like to create your own universe where everyone does and says what you want!
I’ll read to you – perhaps from my very latest Tashi story.
Come armed with lots of questions and I’ll want to ask you some of my own…
I can speak to large audiences or small, with sessions lasting typically an hour.
Stories can’t begin with an idea – but where do they come from? How do you find ideas that sparkle, move you and your readers, come alive?
In workshops I will discuss the ideas behind my books, and explore with students how to turn their ideas into characters creating stories.
We’ll do a variety of quick writing exercises to connect with the creative self, and move on to how we can use our own experience to build other worlds.
We’ll make a list of our favourite words and discuss why they might make us feel good.
I may use a specific book like Monsters to discuss how to create a character. Students may like to draw their characters, and share their creations. We’ll hunt for their characters favourite words, particular problems, what the characters longs for, what is getting in the way, what paths they choose to find solutions.
Mostly, I hope the students will come away with an increased sense of connection with their inner selves, and the imagination that dwells there. When imagination is honoured by writing practice, it swells with confidence and joy, fun and daring – and good stories!
Workshops are suitable for primary school students – grades 3 to 6, high school students [and adults].