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Hutt City Libraries is offering young Wellington writers a great opportunity to get some writing done and pick the brains of local authors, scriptwriters, publishers, poets and lyricists. The line up includes three of Escalator Press’ own authors.
The sessions will run from the 10th of August until the 21st of September and are free to ages 13 to 21.
You can catch Rudy Castañeda López, artist, novelist and author of Open Your Eyes, Jackson Ryder, on August 17th, Trish Harris, poet and writer of the memoir The Walking Stick Tree, on August 24th, and Rob Hack, performer and poet of Everything Is Here, on August 31st.
For more information see the Hutt City Libraries website.
We’re very excited to have another Escalator Press author shortlisted in the New Zealand Book Awards for Children and Young Adults this year.
Erin Donohue’s Because Everything Is Right but Everything Is Wrong is up for both Best First Book and the Copyright Licensing NZ Young Adult Fiction Award. The awards kick off on the 8th of August.
You can find out some of Erin’s writing secrets, and those of her competition, in this wonderful article by The Sapling.
We would like to invite you to download a free copy of Rudy Castañeda López’s Open Your Eyes, Jackson Ryder which at the beginning of this promotion jumped to the top of two of Amazon’s free ebook bestseller lists. It appeared as #1 for US Historical fiction and #4 for Literary Fiction.
Fifteen-year-old Jackson Ryder has always loved art, but in the wake of his mother’s death, he must choose between his passion and his grieving father’s approval. Pulled from his New York home and thrust into the melting pot that is San Sebastiano, California in the 1960s, Jackson finds himself embroiled in an era of assassination, an emerging art scene, the Civil Rights Movement and The Beatles. As he learns how to deal with life, death and a new found interest in girls, drawing is the only thing stopping his world from spinning out of control.
Now is your chance to read this captivating novel for free. Just click here. Available until 7pm Sunday 3rd of June.
For the last week of May, Erin Donohue’s debut novel Because Everything Is Right but Everything Is Wrong will be available to purchase on Amazon for $1.14.
Erin recently took part in the Auckland Writers Festival on a panel with Guardian Fiction Prize winner Alex Wheatle and Eileen Merriman called Can We Be Frank? which explored the difficulties of writing about big issues for a younger audience.
This ebook deal will last until midnight on May 31st.
Arthritis New Zealand Policy Advisor, Jane Wilson, is finding The Walking Stick Tree a valuable resource.
‘I had made the decision over Christmas to buy some new books which I could learn from. The Walking Stick Tree was one of those books. I found it useful to hear of historical treatment methods, to hear Trish’s lived experience from diagnosis as a child to present day and found her sections where she reflected on arthritis and disability really insightful and useful in my work.’
Jane and author Trish Harris can be seen here at the ‘Let’s Talk: our communities, our health’ forum where they met by chance recently. ‘It was great to meet and chat to Trish. Her book’s a recommended read for people to understand the lived experience of arthritis, but also just as a fantastic read. I particularly liked the cover!’
Erin Donohue shares the story behind her bestselling YA novel. This powerful coming-of-age story follows 17-year-old Caleb Evans as he struggles to hold his life together while everything around him is falling apart. It comes as no surprise to us that it was recently the 2nd highest-selling New Zealand children’s fiction title on the Nielsen bestseller list. There was barely a dry eye in the house as Erin shared the experiences that inspired her novel; we are sure you will be moved by her speech too.
To read the speech click here
Helen Margaret Waaka, author of Waitapu, is continuing to write about this small fictitious town. Her short story ‘The Apology’ which is included in a new collection from Huia Publishers, explores an event occurring in Waitapu in more depth.
The collection, Stories on the Four Winds: Ngā Hau e Whā, edited by Brian Bargh and Robyn Bargh is a finalist in this years Massey University Ngā Kupu Ora Awards, in the Te Tuhiinga Auaha – Creative Writing Category. It brings together twenty short stories from eighteen New Zealand writers.
‘The Apology’ will appear in some form in the book Helen is currently working on, Still Waters, a novel and sequel to Waitapu.
On the 7th of October we launched the first novel from our newest author, Erin Donohue.
She’s had a busy couple of weeks with appearances in Wellington in the back of Te Auaha’s big yellow shipping container, and at the Nelson Arts Festival, revealing herself to be not only a talented writer but also a very moving speaker.
Low Visionary, a blog with a focus on disability rights and a passion for accessibility, has written a review of Trish Harris’ memoir that is well worth a read.
“…there was much anguished discussion among disabled people about the need to tell better, more realistic and more nuanced disability stories. The Walking Stick Tree makes an excellent contribution to filling that aching void. It establishes a place for disability and disabled writers in the literary world in general, since the themes are universal, but it makes a place, with its familiar setting, in the New Zealand literary world.”
Read the full review here.
Escalator Press have recently been celebrating the success of their author, L. J. Ritchie. His first novel, Like Nobody’s Watching, has been shortlisted for the Copyright Licensing NZ Award for Young Adult Fiction as well as the Best First Book Award in the 2017 New Zealand Book Awards for Children and Young Adults (NZCYA). The winner of each award walks away with $7,500.
We caught up with L. J. Ritchie to see how he is taking the news. Currently hard at work on his second novel, Ritchie said it was ‘a big surprise’ to be told he was a finalist in the NZCYA, especially in such esteemed company as Maurice Gee in the Best Young Adult Fiction category. Ritchie hopes that the positive buzz around the prestigious awards will encourage readers to engage with his next Young Adult novel, an alternate-history thriller about eugenics in New Zealand during the Great Depression.
Publisher Adrienne Jansen expressed her delight at the nomination, saying she is ‘very proud of Like Nobody’s Watching’ as a ‘great read that also asks big questions’. As Ritchie’s first book, she thinks it is ‘just the start’ of a successful career. The 2017 NZCYA winners will be announced on 14 August. We wish Ritchie, and all other finalists, the greatest of luck.
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