This week all year seven students were fortunate to attend a talk by Bernadette Kelly, a children’s author who visited the school on Monday. Bernadette has written eighteen educational books, as well as four novels in the popular Riding High series.
Students had the opportunity to browse through several of Bernadette’s books while hearing about the day-to-day concerns and considerations of an author. In particular, Bernadette was able to give students insight into the publication process, from planning a book to producing and revising a manuscript. She also gave students some advice on writing believable descriptive passages and dialogue, and provided some guidelines on planning characters and establishing a setting for a story.
At the end of Bernadette’s talk, year sevens took the opportunity to ask a variety of questions about life as an author. A number of students were curious as to how Bernadette got her “lucky break” as an author, gaining a commission from a publishing house to write her first book, Cartwheeling Carli. We also learnt about the amount of time it takes for a book to go from the planning stage to a published copy and about the requirements that publishers have for authors in the editing process.
Students came away from the talk with an excellent understanding of the writing process for a working author.
They also learnt some tips that may help them with future folio pieces, or even in becoming professional writers themselves. All year seven students, as well as their English teachers, would like to thank Bernadette for taking the time to speak to us. – Brad Slater and Rachel Williams, Acting year seven coordinators, Assumption College, Kilmore