Thursday, 10 April 2014

Finding Your Powerup

Today, I was reading about an author that wrote a picture book. That particular book catapulted her onto the picture book scene I so desperately wish I could break into.
In this article she talked about how she wrote it and it did really well, then her editor suggested a follow on book and, voila, a series was born….

I started thinking to myself, I wish I had that kind of interaction. Where an editor or a publishing house, was actually suggesting things to me, collaborating with me and spurring me on to produce something that they want to publish…. I wish I could find my Power-Up book, like this author did.

Do you know what I mean by Power-Up? Have you ever played Mario Cart? You know that moment, when you drive into a coloured box and the prize wheel turns and it lands on black rocket.

The next thing you know, you are sailing through the course at super top speed, passing all the other vehicles, dropping you right up there in first place, where you then sail onto victory….
Yeah, if only I could find my Power-Up book. A book that would catapult me into the hearts of a publisher, editor, reader…..

News flash, everyone who ever seems to be talking about writing kid’s books says avoid writing for the market, write what you love.

Truth is, I have loved all my manuscripts to date. I am not writing them for the market, but for me.

Are any of these manuscripts my Power-Up book, at this point, 10 April 2014. Not so far.

So, I go back to doing what I am doing.

What is it that I am doing? Time to take stock. Turns out what I am doing, is quite a lot actually.

1. I wrote an independent MG book series, started a blog, had a website made.

2. I joined in the Kid Lit Blog Hop, where a great group of Kid Lit Lovers join together to review and recommend kid’s books.

3. I joined SCBWI, to become involved in this community of kid lit authors that I so desperately want to join and impress with my writing.

4. I joined in Tara Lazar’s Piboidmo, in Nov 2013, all of my current picture books bar 1 came from this think tank.

5. I joined the 12x12 challenge
I am writing lots, revising, editing, critiquing, reviewing

6. During the first few weeks of 12x12, I connected with my mega awesome critique partner. I have a few awesome friends and family who critique my work, and they are awesome, this new addition, helped me take my manuscripts to the next level.

7. I joined sub it club, where I can learn about competitions coming up and places to pitch.

8. I have submitted a couple of stories to RYS, got invaluable feedback.

9. I have entered my writing into a couple of competitions, on KBR and CYA

10. I have submitted to several publishers that take unsolicited manuscripts all over the UK, US, Au.

11. I read a lot and sign on for blog tours for other authors through

12. I saw a call on Facebook from Creative Kids Tales, looking for reviewers. (Awesome Aussie site.) I joined and began receiving kid’s books by Australian publishers for review. This gives me a dedicated and motivated time to read Australian kids literature to continually assess, review and understand the books that are gaining editor’s attention.

13. I sent my resume to two kids educational publishers in the hope that one day I could gain some work for hire.

14. I co-started a little service with my favourite blogger friends who reviews books called, Thelma and Louise Beta reading services. In our service, we don’t claim to be editors, but avid readers of kid’s books and if you are willing, we will read your book for a small fee and give you our opinions.

15. I entered my middle grade books into the Wishing Shelf Independent Book Award and became a finalist for both my books.

16. I signed on to do Book Expo Australia in August 2014 also to sell some of my independent books.

17. I continue to read everything there is to know about writing kid’s books…..

18. I signed on to attend Super Nova Melbourne in April 2014, to sell some of my independent books.

So today, I have rallied my spirits, and decided, there is no such thing as a Power-Up book

Maybe, if I could rename it, I would call it a Perseverance Pill. I have to take it every day, and surprise, surprise, I am the only one that can, I have to rely on me, pushing me everyday.

One of my favourite TV shows is Fringe. In an episode, one of the characters feels like they are drowning in a sea of despair, and their partner gives them a pen that has inscribed on it “Find The Crack” If you find the crack it is where the light will be able to get in.

So, I am no longer looking for my Power-Up book, but every day, in every way, in all that I do, I am searching for a tiny crack that will take me to the next level with my books that I want to be….

Catch you next week when I blog about Supanova.
The Aftermath.....


  1. I am tired just reading your list. What a huge list of accomplishments! You should be really proud. That "power" up will come. I can feel it,

    1. Thanks so much for stopping by Jenny and for your kind words. Even having a blog reader is encouraging lol, hope you are having a great week.

  2. Fabulous post, Julie. You are always so organized! I need to take stock of what I'm doing like you have. Definitely shows your path, or in my case, I'm afraid, the lack of a path. Working on correcting that in the near future. Thanks so much for sharing.

    1. Cheryl, you make me laugh, you are a machine with all the fares and appearances you do, I am not up to any of that yet. Thanks so much for stopping by.

  3. Great post, Julie. You've been a busy girl. I can totally relate. It's a long long long long road to overnight success. Keep on plodding along.

  4. 3rd attempt at this comment ... Fingers crossed.

    Great post, Julie. You've been a busy girl. I can totally relate. It's a long long long road to overnight success. Keep on plodding along 😜

  5. Oh my goodness, I would never win any races in Mario Kart without that black rocket! Your post made me giggle and then tired because, whoa, you are busy!!! I can't wait to hear about Supernova! Take a TON of pictures. :)