Today we are joined by Jackie Hosking, compiler of the excellent Pass It On Newsletter – a wonderful networking resource for Australian children’s book creators. Thanks for dropping in, Jackie. Here are Jackie’s seven answers to seven questions.
1. Tell us a little about your publication credits.
My publication credits include poetry and short stories for children published in magazines, anthologies, websites and educational publications. I’m yet to be published in my very own book but that is the dream that I am chasing.
2. How long have you been writing for children?
I have been writing for children since 2004 and had my first children’s poem published “If I Were a Giant” in The School Magazine in 2005. Since then I have had about 40 pieces published.
3. How much time do you spend each week writing and/or revising? And how much time on other writing-related tasks such as promotion, researching markets and so on?
The time I spend on writing varies from day to day. Some days I spend hours writing, some I don’t write at all. I also produce an children’s writing industry newsletter which takes up a bit of time each week as well as running a rhyming manuscript editing service and I also have a blog dedicated to rhyming poetry. Researching markets certainly takes up a fair amount of time as does submitting manuscripts. This I tend to do in fits and starts depending on my mood. I have to be in a very positive mood on the day that I submit manuscripts for consideration.
4. How much time do you spend reading children’s books? And what are you reading right now?
I read a lot of picture books as that is the genre that I am interested in. I have just read “Molly and her Dad” by Jan Ormerod and Carol Thompson published by Little Hare and “Daddy Does the Cha Cha Cha” by David Bedford and Bridget Strevens- Marzo also published by Little Hare.
5. What advice would you give other would-be children’s writers, or share with other professional children’s writers?
I think it’s important to keep positive even when the going gets tough and believe me it gets tough. Surround yourself with writers, network and stay connected. Writing can be a very isolating thing to do so it’s important to connect with people on a real level who understand what it’s like. Join organisations such at The Society of Children’s Writers’ and Illustrators (SCBWI), The Australian Society of Authors (ASA), Local Writers’ Centres and critique groups. Studying your craft at a Tafe or attending writing workshops is another way of keeping in touch with the real world of writing and writers.
6. What is your favourite online resource for children’s writers? Why?
Well I’ll have to say PASS IT ON (PIO) being the compiler, but not only for that reason. PIO is a brilliant resource for everyone interested in the children’s writing/illustrating industry because of the generosity of its subscribers. PIO is able to be published week after week because those who subscribe to it share industry information which ensures that the newsletter is fresh, up to date and therefore relevant. There is no advertising, all information is pertinent to the industry and best of all it is extremely affordable @ 55 cents per week. Nowadays you can’t buy anything for 55 cents, certainly not a cup of coffee.
Writers websites are also another brilliant place to visit as often they will include writing tips and useful links and the information is straight from the horse’s mouth.
Thanks for sharing, Jackie. If YOU would like to be interviewed here, drop me a line at sally @ sallymurphy.net (remove the spaces).