Guest blog by Juliet Sampson
Spreading sunshine and inspiration.
There was a buzz in the air as I walked through the doors of the State Library of Victoria and into a foyer full of people in the book industry. After months of waiting, the day had finally arrived.
I believe the world of a writer is not just about sitting behind a desk, its about networking, meeting and greeting others in your field and understanding your brand. It is about sharing your knowledge and keeping the world of storytelling alive.
As the clock struck 9:30am we all gathered in the theartette. KidLitVic – Meet the Publishers Day was about to begin. The opening speaker discussed the importance of books and keeping stories alive.
Throughout the day, there were various panels about Chapter and Middle Grade books, an illustration panel, picture book panel and young adult panel. There were also some seminars: It’s All About Your Brand; Presenting in schools; Self-editing; and an illustration seminar.
I was lucky to attend ‘It’s All About Your Brand,’ that was presented by Lisa Berryman, children’s publisher at Harper Collins. This was an extremely valuable session. It allowed me to seriously think about my writing and what I stand for.
I’m currently writing young adult books but I enjoyed listening to the picture book panel. I aspire to have a picture book published some day as I have been a primary teacher. Sometimes it can get a bit disheartening when you hear that a publisher may only publish three picture books in one year or even if an author is offered a contract, the process can take from eighteen months to two years to see the final product. But we all know in creative professions, it takes time and you do what you love and love what you do.
The young adult panel of publishers discussed taboo issues related to Y.A. stories. A point was put across about who reads Y.A.? Yes, it’s supposed to be readers starting from thirteen to eighteen but research has shown that readers as young as nine and many adults, particularly ones in late twenties and well into their thirties are reading these books. It was interesting to hear how much had changed in one year in regards to the trends and what could limit sales from when I attended KidLitVic last year. The day ended with a closing panel, allowing questions to the publishers.
It is events like these that bring together the Australian publishing industry and as an author I’m grateful to the people who arrange and make these dreams happen. Times are changing and the world of a writer is no longer just behind the desk, it encompasses so much more. Wishing everyone the best on their journeys. There is no right way and everyone’s path will be different.
Happy writing and thank you to Megan for letting me be a guest author on your blog. It was lovely to catch up with you at this event. Here is a happy photo of us celebrating the joy of being in this industry. Thanks also to the organisers of KidLitVic and the publishers for making this event happen.
It's been a delight having you, Juliet.
Juliet M. Sampson is an award-winning author. Dance Demons, her third novel won 2016 Book of the Year in the Reader’s Choice Awards in the AusRomToday competition. She was also one of ten finalists for 2016 Author of the Year in the same competition. Her other two books are Behind the Mask and Bon Voyage!
After seven successful years as a primary teacher, Juliet decided to make a commitment to full time writing and became a novelist as she wanted her stories to reach a wider audience. As well as writing three books, Juliet has written various articles for magazines and online blogs.
She loves to inspire others and her quote ‘spread sunshine and inspiration,’ has reached a global audience.
Juliet lives in Melbourne near the bay where she is surrounded by family and friends. Her other passions are travelling, dancing, sketching and doing voluntary work for charity. Her fourth novel is to be released later this year.
You can follow her on her Facebook Page,
and find more about Juliet on her website.
So much information was shared at KidLitVic, that many have given their reflections and personal takeaways. There are so many, yet every post is different:
Previous posts on KidLitVic2017:
Be inspired and informed by Pamela Ueckerman as she shares on my blog her reflections on the KidLitVic2017 - Meet the Publishers Conference.
Karen Hendriks takes us on a tour of the panels.
For more coverage and different perspectives:
From an organiser's perspective: The KidLitVic 2017- Meet the Publishers Conference Wrap-Up by Nicky Johnson
Tania McCartney gives her view of KidLit, along with what she is up too on her blog, Works-in-progress, KidLitVic and Crystal Kite!
Romi Sharp reflects on her experiences on her blog, KidLitVic2017 Reflections
Tabitha Page talks about her first KidLitVic experience and how AWESOME it was.
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On my blog you will find:
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