CREATING KIDS’ AND YA BOOKS

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Write Links

Reader’s Theatre at Mt Coot-tha

Once again, Write Linkers met amidst the picturesque Mount Coot-tha Botanical Gardens for lunch and our monthly meeting in June.

This yearly event coincides with the annual ‘Story Art’ exhibition, run by Book Links, which showcases the work of local children’s illustrators in the Richard Randall Art Studio.

There was a huge turnout of members, filling five large tables in the meeting room near the Botanic Gardens café. After our networking, where members shared their writing and creating highs and lows, we jumped straight into the professional development sessions. And this month we had three presenters — all our own members!

 

First up, Karen and Steve Tyrrell presented a detailed explanation of Reader’s Theatre. The Tyrrells have successfully used Reader’s Theatre to create dramatic, humorous and engaging school visits. Then they showed us how to turn any book into an engaging show, entertaining us with examples from Karen Tyrrell’s middle grade book ‘Song Bird Great Barrier Reef Rescue’, with Karen acting as Song Bird and Steve as the villain, Destructo.

An introduction to Reader’s Theatre by Karen Tyrrell and Steve Tyrrell

 

Next, Joanna Wisbey turned her short story, ‘Green Money’, written in verse, into a Reader’s Theatre with the help of several wonderful writers-turned-actors: Karen Tyrrell, Steve Tyrrell, Annaleise Byrd, Liane McDermott and Ayesha Uddin. It was a charming performance, packed with humour and heart, sending the audience into hysterical laughter and heartening ‘awww’s at the end.

A captive audience enjoying Reader’s Theatre in action.

 

Finally, Sheri-Ann O’Shea led us in a writing activation before we all split into groups for our critique sessions.

 

It was a sad moment when we farewelled our Write Links leader and coordinator of nine years, Yvonne Mes who has stepped down from the leadership role to focus on other commitments. Write Links in all its glory is testament to her dedication and hard work. A team of Writelinkers (Zewlan Moor, Rebecca Sheraton and Sandhya Parappukkaran) have stepped in to fill her shoes!

I’m sure all our Write Links members are looking forward to congregating for a creative gathering at Mt Coot-tha again next year.

 

Sandhya Parappukkaran

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