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Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: australia, Most Recent at Top [Help]
Results 1 - 25 of 155
1. ‘Keep It Clever Australia’ Uses Animation To Promote Public Investment in Education

While animation is most often used as an entertainment form, it can also used to educate, and increasingly, to advocate for social causes. We saw animation yesterday for a gun safety PSA in the United States, and now we turn to Australia where Universities Australia is promoting its Keep It Clever Australia campaign to stress the value of public funding for university education and research.

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2. Writing honestly from your true passions

The myth that publishers have stacks of manuscripts  and that writers have to line up in a long queue was deflated by Jennifer Bacia during her talk at the Gold Coast Writers Association meeting . ‘Actually, that is not the case’ she stated. According to Jennifer, publishers are always looking for something that will make […]

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3. DREAMTIME MAN Cometh.



<!--[if gte mso 9]> Normal 0 false false false EN-US X-NONE X-NONE MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 <![endif]-->  My “Dreamtime Man” is taking shape
  A rhyming picture book for grades 4 and up

Illustrator, Ioana Zdralea, did an awesome job of interrupting this wild and mysterious Dreamtime land.  I am thrilled!!  This is the illo she sent me  for the first two verses. The verses describe the harshness of where the Australian aboriginals had to scratch out a living, 



  Do go see Ioana’s other art work:
http://ioanazdraleaillustration.wordpress.com

 




<!--[if gte mso 9]> Normal 0 false false false EN-US X-NONE X-NONE <![endif]-->

Imagine a wild place where sun burns the sand,
Where water and food must be scratched from the land.
This place is the wellspring of men black as coal,
And Dreamtime ruled all who endured as one soul.    

While shy Daintree tribes hunted deep in the shade,
Tough bush and outback men learned how to trade.                     
Whether hunting, or fighting, or struggling to live,
All respected the Dreamtime and what it could give.     

*******************


More sketches and finished artwork will
come to this page soon.

 

 

***************

Books for Kids - Skype Author Visits
Manuscript Critiques

http://www.margotfinke.com

***************

 

 

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4. SKYPE AUSSIE MADNESS!


It's Tuesday. . . 
So watch out for
         

 Aussie..Madness! 

 ................................. ............................................................
       
      
SKYPE MAKES it HAPPEN 
...........................................
            
    YEA!! 
Today I did a SKYPE School Visit from Oregon to the Garden State of New Jersey.

This first grade class offers three languages: 
English, Chinese and Spanish.

And these first grade kids were so SMART!

Right away I had an Aussie connection with two of them.  I shared my Australian aboriginal bark paintings, message stick and boomerang.  One boy had a didgeridoo his mom had brought back from a trip Down Under - and HE PLAYED IT FOR ME!   Fantastic.

Another child's Dad had been to Sydney, knew all about Urulu, and wanted to know what it was like there.  Fortunately I had visited the sacred monolith, so we had a great chat about it. Their teacher is also doing an Australian set of lessons.

We talked about the books they loved, the books I write, and how to write stories that HOOK readers.  I showed them all my picture books, especially "Kangaroo Clues,"  because it is about Aussie critters, and I read from "Ruthie and the Hippo's Fat Behind."  

.

I am always so psyched after Skyping with a class like this one.  They were eager to ask questions, very intelligent ones, too. A way smart bunch of kids.  

My Magic Carpet of Books got a super work out this morning - over an hour.  Yet it went so fast because we were all having a good time.  I learned from them, and I hope they learned from me. 

You know. . .

 Today I glimpsed the future generation. . . 
and they looked  pretty awesome to me!

 

***********************

Books for Kids - Manuscript Critiques
http://www.margotfinke.com

***********************


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5. Librarian voices from the other side of the world

By Annabel Coles

Reading for our first Australia/New Zealand LAC

Reading for our first Australia/New Zealand LAC

After months of planning, preparation and final presentation run-throughs, I stood at the front of Seminar Room 3 within the State Library of Victoria, looking across the tables carefully decorated with our OUP goody bags and name placards. It was 8:30 in the morning and I was ready to meet my first librarians from “Down Under”. Back in the office in the United Kingdom, a colleague and I had planned the two meetings (one in the morning for academic librarians, one in the afternoon with state, public, and school librarians) with military precision. The refreshments, the sessions, the materials, the presentations, the timings, even our entertainment at lunch (a local author was coming in to give a lively talk on his book) was planned to a tee. But what you can never plan when dealing with people, and perhaps especially passionate librarians, is how they will respond to those plans…

I was nervous. My colleagues were more relaxed, being based in Australia, they were more familiar with the subtle culture differences; they knew the drill. I, on the other hand, needed to fit in, be approachable, and most importantly I needed to ensure I listened and absorbed everything they had to say so I could fully represent them and their needs back in Oxford, on the other side of the world.

Shortly after 8:30 a.m. the librarians started arriving, one by one, picking up their coffees and muffins, huddling in small groups, and started chatting. I needn’t have worried.

The important thing about these events (which we are labelling our “Library Advisory Councils”) is giving the librarians an opportunity to talk with their peers on issues that matter to most to them, and we, as publishers, have the privileged to be part of those conversations. I learnt early in the sessions that they rarely get the chance to discuss issues that they want to discuss. In their usual meetings they are presented with a specific theme and asked to represent only on that area.

Ahead of the meetings it was really important that we asked what they wanted to discuss, and then we would make that a big part of the day. Of course we also have things we want to update them on — as our “Advisors” it’s important that we are able to give them information on our strategies and plans for the future — but this was never intended to be a sales pitch. We want to give them the stage and sit alongside them in the discussions, rather than it being an “us and them” debate.

For me, this was my first time on antipodean soil, surrounded by librarians who were having good and bad experiences with publishers, and this is my opportunity to do something about it. I felt lucky to sit amongst them and openly eavesdrop (whilst furiously taking notes).

Underway with the LAC

Underway with the LAC

It would be naïve to think that a meeting like this could solve all the problems discussed. Some of the topics discussed were huge hitters that have been discussed and debated in various forms at library conferences around the world over the last few years. It was acknowledged that these issues are larger and more complex than we could possibly hope to remedy within a day. But, as the group were together, the very act of them venting and sharing their experiences enabled them to strengthen their own network and not feel so isolated. It also gave me first-hand experience of their thoughts and feelings on the topic, so that I can now better represent their views when I’m back in Oxford.

Once we got past those larger issues, it was now time to buckle down to get some actionable takeaways: what could we actually impact on a short term basis?

The majority of the actions that I brought away from the sessions were based around workflows: how can publishers work with librarians to make their jobs easier; cut out complexities within processes; and just generally make things simpler. The renewals process is complex and long-winded: what can we do to streamline and simplify the process? We supply our meta-data to discovery service tools but it’s getting stuck with that intermediary for months before finally getting added to their system: so how can we influence our partnerships to move things through more quickly?

Much discussion was had around business models (and we have a Future Business Models group at OUP), including Patron Driven Acquisition and Evidence Based Acquisition. Librarians had both positive and negative experiences and expectations around the impact of those on budgeting and workflows. Again, this was all gold dust to take back to Head Office and sprinkle liberally into the agenda!

So, after brainstorms, lively debate and summarising in groups, I came away with an armful of flipchart paper, covered in ideas, straight from the people who really matter. As the librarians left at the end of the sessions, they were exchanging contact details, thanking us for the day and the opportunity to be involved, and promising to pop by to say hello to us the following week at VALA (a library conference being held in the city).

The Victoria State Library, Melbourne

The Victoria State Library, Melbourne

In addition to the fantastic feedback, I have also made some real connections with those librarians on the other side of the world to me — librarians with diverse workflows, audiences, and requirements of publishers. But now, with their voices and opinions still ringing in my ears, my intention is to carry their specific ideas and challenges, the 17000 kilometres across ocean and continents back to the working groups and strategy-makers in Oxford. There, librarian voices from all around the world, whose ideas are communicated through other Library Advisory Councils, will be heard.

Annabel Coles is the Senior Marketing Manager in the Institutional Marketing team at Oxford University Press, promoting our online products and journals to institutions across Europe and Australia and New Zealand. She has held various sales and marketing roles within OUP for nine years.

Regional “Library Advisory Councils” are held within various territories across the world to facilitate conversations with our customers (librarians) on issues that are of mutual interest to ensure that we are feeding back appropriate information and intelligence directly from our markets to our product and platform development, business model and publishing strategies across the business. This provides an opportunity to listen to our customers on their turf, alongside their peers and in their local language and specifically to speak on issues relevant to them in their part of the world. We hope that this will ensure we are bringing the customer voice back into the heart of the products and services we develop within the Global Academic Business. For more, see the OUP Librarian Resource Center.

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Image credits: (1) Photograph of Steacie Science and Engineering Library at York University by Raysonho@Open Grid Scheduler. Public domain via Wikimedia Commons. (2-4) ANZ LAC images courtesy of Annabel Coles. Do not reproduce without permission.

The post Librarian voices from the other side of the world appeared first on OUPblog.

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6. Google’s New and Innovative Technologies

IT Forum Gold Coast (ITFGC) is the best place to network with industry peers, potential clients and employers.  The Federal, State and local Governments give well-deserved recognition to ITFGC for being an active voice of the IT industry on the Gold Coast and Brisbane. Being a member gives you an unprecedented opportunity to stay informed […]

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7. Cairns by Margot Justes


 
 
Cairns is a small town, walking distance to everything. It’s quaint, accessible, beautiful, and the people are friendly. The only taxi we took was to and from the airport.

Restaurants were plentiful, we even paid homage to Crocodile Dundee, and ate at the place named after the movie. I loved the movie, and the restaurant was right on the boardwalk, facing the water, and a short hop from the hotel. Beautiful setting. The food was okay, nothing fantastic, but I didn’t expect more. In this case, location and name were the selling points. I heard the steaks were good, but I’m not a great meat eater, and honestly prefer a good meatball to steak.

The hotel room included breakfast, and it was quite a buffet spread, down to my daily dose of passion fruit. I mixed it with yogurt and prunes. I love prunes, must be the European background. As odd as it sounds, the mix was delicious.  I continued with the concoction in Sydney as well.

In the center of town, there is a huge swimming pool that faces sand and water, and it is open year round. A sidewalk separates the pool from the sand, and the walk along the coast was mesmerizing, the beach on one side and Cairns on the other. Beautifully laid out for optimum pleasure for all.

There are plenty of cafes, restaurants, art galleries, souvenir shops, parks, and flora and fauna. In other words, it was perfection. From the day I arrived, I knew I was going to hate to leave. It was love at first sight.

The Cairns Regional Gallery introduced me to the works of Lloyd Rees. His drawings and paintings reflected lush landscapes, light, where man and nature interacted. His  drawings of churches were amazing, almost architectural renditions but drawn with soul.  I saw a drawing he did of St. Mary’s Cathedral in Sydney, and had to see the real thing. I actually visited the cathedral because of the drawing. He captured my imagination. I would see his work again in the Art Gallery New South Wales in Sydney.

The sunset harbor cruise is highly recommended, along with the harbor, there are glimpses of mangroves in the distance, a sublime sunset, and a beautiful skyline of the city.

There was so much more to see and do, but this was a good start. Would I go back? Absolutely.  

More next week.

Cheers,
Margot  Justes
A Hotel in Paris
A Hotel in Bath
Hearts & Daggers
Hot Crimes Cool Chicks
coming end of September Blood Art
www.mjustes.com

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8. Looking back on a successful event “Linking You Locally”

“Linking You Locally”    “Linking You Locally” was masterfully organised by the Gold Coast Helensvale Branch Library and Gold Coast Medicare Local with the benevolent support of many local businesses.   Gold Coast Medicare Local is a not-for-profit independent and locally run company and their generous sponsorship to the local event was greatly appreciated.     Despite the gathering grey clouds in the early morning the event started on time, at 9am and cheerfully welcomed the local community with colourful displays on both floors of the Helensvale Library; inside and outside. The event was officially opened by Councillor William Owen – Jones and was followed by the Latin inspired fitness dance Zumba. It was loud and full of colour. Many participated in the exhilarating ‘fitness-party’.    It was inviting, motivating and inspirational and many wonderful activities followed for the next few hours. Activities included a theatre performance, Pilates class, circus workshop and Basketball.  It was free and available ... Read the rest of this post

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9. BarCamp Gold Coast 10 organised by Gold Coast TechSpace

(If you want to know the general History of BarCamp – click the white button below) A free community event, the BarCamp Gold Coast 10 was organised by the founder and current President of Gold Coast TechSpace – Steve Dalton, by the current committee member and Secretary of Gold Coast TechSpace – David Tangye and Open Source Software Engineer – Anna Gerber. It was a fantastic event with intense social interactions, interesting discussions, well-organised workshops, clear visual demonstrations and plenty of practical advice – just like this one that I was able to capture on the spot: On a serious note, I can honestly say that I was listening and learning as much as I could.  I mean, seriously, where else would you find such a fantastic opportunity to meet with people like Singularity University Ambassador (NASA Ames Research Center), Adjunct Professor at Bond University and Adjunct Professor at Griffith University – Dr ... Read the rest of this post

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10. Week-end Book Review: Ships in the Field by Susanne Gervay and Anna Pignataro

Susanne Gervay, illustrated by Anna Pignataro,
Ships in the Field
Ford Street Publishing, 2012.

Ages: 8+

“Every night Brownie and I wait for Papa to come home.” – and when he arrives, “Round and round we whirl.”  This joyous ritual provides the opening sequence of Ships in the Field, a story whose essence is perhaps distilled into the notion of the transcendental power of love.  Acclaimed Australian author Susanne Gervay (I Am Jack, That’s Why I Wrote This Song) has based the story on her own childhood as the daughter of Hungarian refugees.  Told through the eyes, perception and narrative voice of a likeable, effervescent little girl, we learn that her beloved, funny Papa works in a car factory but used to be a farmer “in the old country, before it was broken”; and quiet, withdrawn Ma, who seems to have forgotten how to smile, was a teacher and now “sews dresses all day long”.  The girl’s confidante is her soft toy dog Brownie but she also longs for a real dog.

Every Sunday the family goes into the countryside and Papa says, “Look at the ships in the field.”  This makes the little girl giggle, for it conjures up a funny image, but it makes her sad too, because other people laugh at the way her father speaks – and so she staunchly joins him in his pronunciation of the word “sheep”.  One Sunday, near the “woolly ships”, she finds something very precious that signals a new chapter for all the family.

The undercurrents in the story are felt in the girl’s awareness of aspects of her family’s past.  It is never mentioned in her presence but it weighs on her nevertheless, and she confides in Brownie, “I don’t like war.”  Anna Pignataro’s beautiful watercolour illustrations perfectly capture the emotions – love, pain, joy – that emanate from the story.  As well as the ever-faithful Brownie, vignettes of a real dog appear throughout the story; and two notable sequences merge events from the past, depicting war and flight through the second-hand filter of the little girl’s knowledge and imagination.  The rough pencil outlines underlying the watercolours imbue the illustrations with energy and a sense of movement that is further emphasised in the variety of page layouts: the use of continuous narrative is particularly effective.

Ships in the Field is itself a multi-layered term, from straightforward mispronunciation to providing scope for metaphorical and poetic interpretation – or simply delight in its nonsense.  While offering a warm reading experience for young children, the book also poses questions for older readers and adults about how much young children can or should know about painful elements in a family’s past; and about the damage that can be caused by not bringing the past into the open, when children have already absorbed more than adults give them credit for.  Each rereading of this perfect synthesis between spoken and visual narrative offers something new, through the nuance of the writing or a dawning awareness of a visual motif.  Above all, Ships in the Field is a very special picture book of extraordinary depth, that carries a message of hope and reassurance that time does and will heal.

Marjorie Coughlan
October 2012

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11. Sun Mother Wakes the World

Sun Mother Wakes the World
An Australian Creation Story

At the beginning of the world, it was dark and silent and nothing stirred anywhere, until a voice roused the sleeping Sun Mother in the sky, telling her it was time to wake up all the creatures of the earth.
The indigenous people of Australia believe that their first ancestors created the world and its laws. They also believe that the world is still being created in a continual process they call The Dreamtime. Renowned storyteller Diane Wolkstein has crafted a powerful retelling of an Australian creation story...

If you liked this, try:
The Golden Flower: A Taino Myth
The Clever Monkey! A Folktale from West Africa
The Egyptian Cinderella
Stories from the Billabong
Ready to Dream

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12. PaperTigers’ Book of the Month: Dingo’s Tree by Gladys Milroy and Jill Milroy

Our newest PaperTigers’ issue is now live and  focuses on cats and dogs in multicultural children’s literature – a topic that was suggested by my 12-year-old daughter, who is animal fanatic.

Among the many highlights in the issue is our interview with Aboriginal elder and storyteller Gladys Milroy, in which she discusses her children’s book  Dingo’s Tree, co-authored with her daughter Jill Milroy, who is currently Dean of the School of Indigenous Studies at the University of Western Australia. Dingo’s Tree is published by Magabala Books, Australia’s oldest independent Indigenous publishing house, and is PaperTigers’  Book of the Month. Look for our review of the book soon and in the meantime enjoy this wonderful review that Emma Perry at My Book Corner has graciously allowed us to reprint.

Located in Australia, My Book Corner provides book reviews on an entire assortment of children’s literature and is a great place to visit and find out what is hot in the world of Australian kid and YA lit. We reprint some of My Book Corner’s reviews under the reviews tab of the PaperTigers website.

Gladys Milroy and Jill Milroy,
Dingo’s Tree
Magabala Books, 2012.

Reviewed by Emma Perry at My Book Corner

Divided in to four short chapters entitled Dingo’s Tree, The Raindrop, The Tree That Walked and The Last Tree this is a poignant story about man’s destruction of the landscape and its impact on the landscape, natural resources and the animals who depend on them for survival.

Penned and illustrated by mother and daughter team Gladys Milroy and Jill Milroy this is a picture book which gives voice to the very real threats on Australia’s landscape. Mining. The beauty of its narrative, combined with the Milroys’ warm illustrations ensure that Dingo’s Tree will leave a lasting impression.

This deceptively simple yet powerful parable begins when Dingo is unable to find a tree of his own. He draws one and so begins the magical yet sad centre of this parable. The tree grows and grows too tall even for the moon to view the top, then in the aftermath of a cyclone it disappears. As a single, beautiful raindrop appears on a tiny tree, arguments ensue as to who owns it, however a much more pressing matter soon emerges.

The selflessness of crow who flies for miles each day to supply Little Tree with water, is set in parallel against man …

“mining is cutting too deep for the scars to heal. Once destroyed, mountains can’t grow again and give birth to the rivers that they send to the sea.”

The character of the Dingo continues to emerge as one of wisdom and reason, the rain drop must be reserved, saved for Dingo who will know when the time is right.

The ending is gorgeous and poignant, you can not fail to be moved by the final poetic lines followed by Dingo and Wombat’s final conversation…

An ever timely message about environment and man’s role in preserving and maintaining it.

Dr Anita Heiss’ review of Dingo’s Tree can be enjoyed here.

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13. On the Glorious Last US Booksigning Tour, with digressions onto Concorde and Australia

posted by Neil
Hullo.

I've been all over the place. I went back to the midwest and spent two days with my dogs, and I helped wrap the beehives for winter.


(I discovered my zombie arm had been yarnbombed when I got home.)

Now I'm back in Cambridge MA, missing the dogs, but starting to feel more at home in this rambling high house. The at-homeness has more to do with furniture than anything else, I think.  For example, a desk-chair was just delivered. There's nothing like a comfy chair for making you want to sit and write, if you are me.

I've handed in the latest draft of the HBO AMERICAN GODS pilot, and a short film I've written for another project, and I'm writing a bunch of different things right now.

I'm also proof-reading and copy-editing a bunch of books. Today I got to read through the UK edition of Fortunately, The Milk*, profusely illustrated by Chris Riddell. I laughed a lot at Chris's rough sketches. Can't wait to see it finished. (Skottie Young's illustrating the US edition. I've only seen two pages of his work. It's just as funny in a different, more manic, way.  I love them both and am so glad that each publisher went its own way on this.) Fortunately The Milk will be published in September in the US and October in the UK. I just wrote a description of it for the US edition. I explained:


This is quite possibly the most exciting adventure ever to be written about milk since Tolstoy's epic novel War and Milk. Also it has aliens, pirates, dinosaurs and wumpires in it (but not the handsome, misunderstood kind), not to mention a Volcano God.

It contains passages like this:

“You are charged with breaking into people’s planets and redecorating them,” said a noble and imposing-looking Tyrannosaurus Rex. “And then with running away and doing it again somewhere else, over and over. You have committed crimes against the inhabitants of eighteen planets, and crimes against good taste.”
 “What we did to Rigel Four was art!” argued a globby alien.
 “Art? There are people on Rigel Four,” said an Ankylosaurus, “who have to look up, every night, at a moon with three huge plaster ducks flying across it.”


...

I love that Fortunately the Milk is two different books -- one in the US, one in the UK: it allows them to be published a month apart, which is much easier on the author.

In the old days of publishing, books in the US were published up to a year before or after the same books in the UK, but that started changing about ten years ago, and the internet changed it, as it has changed so much. People who like authors will buy their books when the books come out, and if the book is published in the US, people in the UK will simply go to Amazon (or some such website) and buy it, and if the book is published later in the US then American readers will head off to Amazon.co.uk (or similar).

When my new adult novel, THE OCEAN AT THE END OF THE LANE** is published, this summer, it will be coming out on June the 18th in the UK and the US too. This presents interesting challenges, mostly involving bi-location, and makes me miss Concorde, just a little.

No, I do not miss the sonic booms or the environmental damage, and, having been on one of the Concordes once, I do not miss the plane itself, which was small and dilapidated and chilly and old. But I miss the way one could fly to New York from London and feel like one had made a local hop and land three hours before one took off, and I miss the moment of looking out of Concorde's window and seeing the curvature of the Earth and feeling like all human problems were very small and far away.

(It was about 15 years ago. I had to get to Amsterdam to do a signing in high summer, and the UK trip I was meant to be doing was suddenly cancelled, leaving me without a flight.  When the person on Northwest airlines' phone said, "Honestly, I can't believe how many miles it will take to get you there during the blackout week. You could take Concorde for that," and I said, "Hang on, I can use airmiles to fly Concorde?" and she said, "Well, yes.")

Which is a bit of a wander off the subject, which is that it now looks like I'll do a few days in the UK before publication, then fly back to the US on publication day, and then sign like a fiend across America, then go back to the UK and sign some more and then probably come back and do a handful of Canadian signings, and then collapse.


This will be my first actual signing (as opposed to reading) tour since Anansi Boys in 2005. I’ll go places and in each place I’ll do a reading, a short Q&A, then I’ll sign books.

I think the OCEAN AT THE END OF THE LANE tour will be the last actual signing tour I ever do. They’re exhausting, on a level that’s hard to believe. I love meeting people, but the sixth hour of signing, for people who have been standing in a line for seven hours, is no fun for anybody. (The last proper US signing I did, it lasted over 7 hours and I signed for over 1000 people. I'd suspect a lot of the signings on this tour will be like that, or bigger.)

So I’m going to try and make this tour the glorious last US book signing tour, and then stop doing book signing tours for good.

I’ll do a bunch of American signings on the tour, including, I hope, places that I don’t normally get to, like the US South. I’ll go to the UK, and do a smaller, more manageable tour. (You can get on and off trains in the UK, to get to places.) 

And then, over the next year or so, I’m going to do my best to go to places I don’t usually get to, or to which I haven’t gone in a long time, as THE OCEAN... is published — places like Brazil and Poland, and I'll do whatever kinds of signings or events are appropriate there.

I may do events, and there may well be pre-signed books for sale there, and I might even sign books if I feel like it (I did a ninja book signing at St Mark’s Bookshop in New York a week ago, announcing it a couple of hours before I did it on Twitter. It was really fun. They may well have a few signed books left in stock, if you need holiday gifts) but once the Ocean at the End of the Lane tour is over, I do not think I will do any more book signing tours.

...

I was asked if I could go to Australia around publication time for OCEAN too, and I had to say no -- only one me, too many places to be. But I am going to be in Australia in January, and I'll be doing three events there. 

At 6 pm on January the 20th, I'll be at the Theatre Royal in Hobart, Tasmania. I'll be doing a few things including  reading an unpublished story - appropriate for all ages, although it'll probably mean more to adults. Jherek Bischoff is going to be there, making music happen while I read. Ticket details are at http://www.liveguide.com.au/Tours/774225/MONA_FOMA_Festival_2013?event_id=795603. The event is close to sold out, I believe, so get tickets now. It'll be over in time for you to see David Byrne later that evening...

On the 24th of Jan I'll be in Melbourne, at the Atheneum Theatre, doing an event for the Wheeler Centre. It's going to be centred around Ocean at the End of the Lane, and for that and for the event in Sydney, Hachette, my Australian publisher, will be giving each attendee a special preview of the book, in the shape of the first three chapters. Tickets and details at http://wheelercentre.com/calendar/event/neil-gaiman1/ 

On the 25th, I'll be in Sydney. The event will be similar to, but probably completely different from, Melbourne's, although people who come will also get the special limited Hachette novel preview. It's under the aegis of the Sydney Writers Festival, which is one of my favourite Festivals in the world. Tickets and details at http://www.cityrecitalhall.com/events/id/1440

(Last year I did an evening in Sydney and one in Melbourne. They both sold out fast, so please, get tickets if you want to go. Do not wait and be sad and send me sad messages asking if I can squeeze you in somehow.)

...

Right. I am going to go and sit in my writing chair some more now and make stuff up and write it down.



*very silly. Funny. For readers of all ages. Contains milk.

** not very silly at all. Sometimes funny but mostly personal and even scary and disturbing. Not for children, even though it's about a child. Contains a small amount of milk; was manufactured in a facility that processes nuts.










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14. Weekend Groove: Music Videos from Australia, Germany, Belgium and France

We’re going to start featuring the most interesting, creative and original animated music videos every weekend in a new section we call the Weekend Groove. Submit you vidoes HERE.

“Gangsta Riddim” directed by about:blank (Belgium)

Audio excerpt of “Gangsta Riddim” remix by Roel Funcken. Gangsta Riddim (Original) by SCANONE.

“Over You” directed by Drushba Pankow (Germany)

“Over You” is a music video clip originally made for the song “Nobody’s Fool” by Parov Stelar. The Berlin-based musician Michal Krajczok wrote and produced his song “Over You” especially for this video, featuring the voice of Larissa Blau. The video is directed, designed and animated by Drushba Pankow (Alexandra Kardinar and Volker Schlecht), with additional animation by Maxim Vassiliev.

“A Very Unusual Map” directed by Loup Blaster (France)

A music video for Hibou Blaster

“Teapot” directed by Clem Stamation (Australia)

Cantaloupe are a synth-guitar/bass-drums trio from Nottingham, UK, formed in January 2011. Drawing influences from Afro-pop to Krautrock to the avant garde, who aim to make infectuous and thoroughly pleasing instrumental pop music.

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15. The Adventures of Max, Book 1: Little Dude by Michelle Hennessy

. The Adventures of Max, Book 1: Little Dude by Michelle Hennessy illustrations by Luke Harland 3 Stars . . From Press Release:  Max always dreamed of surfing.  Every day he’d go down to the beach and watch all of the other surfers riding the waves and having tons of fun.  The sun was going …

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16. Melbourne

I'm in Melbourne. It's summer.
At night, the trees are full of fruit bats, at dawn the Lorikeets take over.

Australia sketchbookbirdsdoodle

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17. Weekend Groove: Music Videos from Poland, US, UK, and Australia

The weekend is almost over, but it’s not too late to check out these quality animated music videos that have recently come to my attention.

“Katachi” directed by Kijek/Adamski (Poland)

Music video for Shugo Tokumaru. Watch the making-of video.

“the light that died in my arms” directed by Alan Foreman (US)

Music video for Ten Minute Turns. Song written and recorded by Alan Foreman and Roger Paul Mason

“Easy” directed by Wesley Louis and Tim McCourt (UK)

Music video for Mat Zo and Porter Robinson. Credits:

Directed By Louis & McCourt
Art Direction by Bjorn Aschim
Animators: Jonathan ‘Djob’ Nkondo, James Duveen, Sam Taylor, Wesley Louis, Tim McCourt
Backgrounds and Layouts: Bjorn Aschim, Mike Shorten
Compositing: Sam Taylor, Jonathan Topf
3D VFX Directing by Jonathan Topf
Graphic Design by Hisako Nakagawa
Producers: Jack Newman, Drew O’Neill
Produced by Bullion

“Time to Go” directed by Darcy Prendergast and Seamus Spilsbury (Australia)

Music video for Wax Tailor produced by Oh Yeah Wow. Credits:

Animators: Sam Lewis, Mike Greaney, Seamus Spilsbury, Darcy Prendergast
VFX supervisor: Josh Thomas
Assistant animators: Alexandra Calisto de Carvalho, Joel Williams
Compositors: Josh Thomas, Jeremy Blode, James Bailey, Alexandra Calisto de Carvalho, Keith Crawford, Dan Steen
Crotchet sculptor: Julie Ramsden
Colour grade: Dan Stonehouse, Crayon

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18. “Man Spaghetti” by Felix Colgrave

If you were planning to sleep tonight, then you may want to avoid this exquisitely creepy short:

It was made by Australian animator Felix Colgrave:

“When I made this film, I was exploring the idea of how living things are made of matter, and when we die and rot and we’re returned to the earth and yadda yadda, and then that matter then goes on to build other living things. Basically I cut out the middle man, and made the matter reorganise itself into new things the moment the consciousness died. Then i put them in onesies and gave the whole thing a silly name.”

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19. Guest Post: Starlight Children's Aid


Tania Elizabeth is a mother first and foremost and the author of The Tier of Eternal Grace. Book One The Moon Clearing was released earlier this year. Book Two The Mirror’s Shadow will be released about September. Book Three will then follow in the early part of 2014.


The Tier of Eternal Grace is a captivating fantasy of magic and passion, wound into the truths of reality that will enchant readers with its depiction of the faerie realm, and the exploits of the faeries themselves. Book One of the series The Moon Clearingis an immersive tale of mysticism and adventure, of spiritual and sensual intent that shall enrapture your every sense.


SUMMARY
Beyond the boundary that separates the mundane and earthly planes from the divine lies Eterna Fadas, a place ruled by extraordinary beings, lithe and human-like in appearance, yet ethereal in their grace and beauty, and sensuous in nature.
"I have existed always! Where I began I do not know, for all I know is just as I am today!"
As Queen, Tatiana was thought to have lived a life of opulence, her faith and beliefs her endearing essence. Why then was it so, that beneath the picture of perfection laid torments and terrors even she dare not explain. Being She came with its prices paid. Being She came with a deal; a contract in which she was to relinquish herself to a rogue of unmerciful fury. Would this be the end of all she know? Would this be the end of her existence?


Aside from her writing and her three angels, Tania is also an advocate for the Starlight Children’s Foundation. Being a mother herself and having seen firsthand what some of these children are dealt with on a day to day basis, and yet seeing the strength and courage they each maintain, Tania felt the need to not only donate her time, but to also help raise much needed funds.

The Starlight Children’s Foundation transforms the experience of hospitalization and treatment for seriously ill children and their families. Starlight is the only children’s charity with a permanent, physical presence in very major pediatric hospital in the country.

Every minute of every day a child is admitted to hospital in Australia. For thousands of these children what happens next is the diagnosis of a serious or chronic illness that changes their life, and the lives of their families, forever.

This is where Starlight steps in - delivering a range of innovative programs, built on the World Health Organization’s social model of health, to support the well-being and resilience of these seriously ill children and their families.

Starlight programs are integral to the total care of seriously ill children - while the health professionals focus on treating the illness, Starlight is there to lift the spirits of the child - giving them the opportunity to laugh and play and be a child again
About the Author, Tania Elizabeth
Like each and every one of us, Tania's own journey has been one of trials and tribulations, of Love and of passions; and the dissolutions of it. Heartache, sorrows, smiles and laughter always seeming. Through the writing of this book and the words of Tatiana, Tania has found a peace within and learnt the true meaning of "I LOVE ME!"

A message from Tania
STARLIGHT AUTHOR’S AID

I am asking for all’s assistance.
To give to others is to give to oneself, and 
I NEED YOUR HELP!!!
Help us to raise funds for the Starlight Children's Foundation, which supports terminally ill children and their families.
There are two ways in which people can help.
It is very simple. 

By simply hosting, reviewing or interviewing myself/my book via a blog post, amazon, newspaper, radio, TV within a 21day window frame, between the dates of Friday 12th of April and Friday the 3rd of May. For every appearance, I will be donating $1 to the Starlight Children’s Foundation. 

If any of you could help, I would be so grateful. If you could connect me with anyone else who would be happy to interview, do a short post or review on myself/my book, I would be ever so grateful more.

I am also asking for donations, even $1, which you may do direct via this link.
 http://starlightday2013bb.gofundraise.com.au/page/ElizabethT
You may also follow our progress on the Starlight Author's Aid Facebook Page.
http://www.facebook.com/StarlightAuthorsAid

We are looking at making this an annual event. This year it is based upon myself, though every year after, we will base it upon another upcoming author.
So please share and pass this along to all. Let's make this a huge affair and raise much needed funds for a very worthy cause.

My heartfelt thanks to all.
Love, Blessings and Faerie Kisses always xo

BARNES AND NOBLE  http://bit.ly/ZJwcnH


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20. Animated Fragments #23

It’s the return of a readers’ favorite: Animated Fragments. These clips celebrate the briefest of the brief: short animated experiments, work-in-progress clips, advertising pieces, animated GIFs, trailers and and small pieces that otherwise wouldn’t have a home on Cartoon Brew. For more, visit the Animated Fragments archive.

“La zona blanca” by Reza Riahi (Iran/France)

“Louis” by Mathilde Parquet (France)

“Amoo Lucky” teaser for Riz Mouj Co. directed by Mohammad Kheirandish/Tuca Animation Studio (Iran)

“Cake” (WIP) by Anna P

“NoName Walk Cycle” by Ariel Victor (Australia)

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21. G’Day Mate! ‘Maggie’ Vaults Down Under to Australia!

GRAIN VALLEY, Kan. – Folks around here are still searching for the right words to express how thrilled they are that Maggie Vaults Over the Moon is on sale now at Australia’s premier online bookseller, Angus & Robertson! “Gee-whiz, I … Continue reading

0 Comments on G’Day Mate! ‘Maggie’ Vaults Down Under to Australia! as of 7/19/2013 8:38:00 PM
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22. Maggie Welcomes Thousands of Visitors Worldwide

Maggie Steele, the storybook heroine who vaults over the moon, has been attracting thousands of visitors from around the world. So many visitors, in fact, that she’s using a time zone map to keep track of them all.* People are … Continue reading

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23. Public Speaking and Communication

At some point in our life we will face the fear of public speaking when we need to deliver a speech during a special occasion, address an audience, make a professional presentation or simply tell a story to a group of strangers; it is inevitable.  Public speaking can be and really should be a satisfying experience.  However, the majority of people feel fear, anxiety or experience stage fright. So, how can it be avoided? To answer this question I went to a ‘Dare to Speak!’ workshop at the Helensvale library which was organised by members of Toastmasters International. It wasn’t news to me that learning public speaking skills can be beneficial to effective communication and help to become a better leader. However, my pen was filling pages very quickly and I am happy to share what I learnt with you. ‘Dare to Speak!’ was well-organised, presented and lead by the Master of Ceremonies – ... Read the rest of this post

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24. Tjapukai by Margot Justes


 

Tjapukai is an Aboriginal Cultural Park. A short 15 minute ride from Cairns, puts you right in the old world culture brilliantly revived, and it seems to be alive and doing well.

It is a contained park with planned activities, and I thought it was a terrific introduction to the Aboriginal culture and folk art.  

There was a didgeridoo concert, the haunting mellow sound resonated in the theatre, along with traditional dancing performed by the Tjapukai Dance Troupe. The didgeridoo requires a lot of air power, but the sound that comes out of the instrument resonates around you like an echo. Powerful, still and evocative.

The dance movements were mesmerizing, you quickly got caught up in the story they were telling. Tales of hunting, spiritualism, survival and pride; an insight into the culture through music and dance. The perfect introduction to a civilization  that was totally foreign to me. It was ideal, because it brought the past to life not just through a lecture, but through art, music and dance, and it was interactive

There were boomerang throwing lessons, along with spear throwing, it’s not as easy as it looks. If thrown correctly, the boomerang will return to you, but you must make the attempt to catch it. It will not magically appear in your hand, although the return flight was fascinating to watch.

There were lessons about hunting tools and weapons that were used some 40,000 years ago by the Aboriginal people. It was an amazing insight into an ancient society.

The park is intimate, well organized, and first and foremost educational. A rare glimpse of what once was, an inspiration to keep the old culture alive for future generation. A tiny spark that shows awareness of what once was.

More next week.

Cheers,
Margot  Justes
A Hotel in Paris
A Hotel in Bath
Hearts & Daggers
Hot Crimes Cool Chicks
coming end of September Blood Art
www.mjustes.com

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25. The rebirth of international heritage law

By Lucas Lixinski


In June this year, developments around the Great Barrier Reef were excitedly discussed and closely scrutinized by the World Heritage Committee, a subsidiary organ of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). More specifically, the region around the reef, mineral-rich soil in northeastern Queensland (Australia), has been developed by Australian and foreign mining companies. So the coal, Australia’s second largest export (amassing a whopping AUD 46.8 billion in 2011), can actually head to countries like China, ports as needed. The world’s largest coal-exporting port just so happens to be nearby.

The development of ports requires dredging, and that dredged soil is usually dumped at sea. The soil, rich in heavy metals, releases those metals into the water, and they slowly drift on to reefs, killing coral life.

Why does the World Heritage Committee care? Well the Great Barrier Reef is on the World Heritage List, along with 980 other properties in 160 countries around the world. Does that automatically give the World Heritage Committee, a body whose headquarters is in Paris, and just so happened to be sitting in Cambodia last June, any authority to tell the Australian people and government that they cannot fully exploit their natural resources, in pursuance of their right to Permanent Sovereignty over Natural Resources?

As it turns out, yes. That is what international heritage does: creates exceptions to States’ sovereign rights so certain goods, deemed worthwhile, can be safeguarded for generations to come. UNESCO, established in 1946, has since its establishment pursued the objective of protecting and safeguarding heritage. To this effect, it has passed on a number of international instruments, including recommendations, declarations, and a number of treaties. Of these, five are particularly relevant:

These conventions, spanning 50 years, present on their own an important record of the evolution of this field of international law, and of international law more generally.

When it comes to the field specifically, the titles of these instruments alone already signal to one of the most important changes, the shift from cultural property to cultural heritage. This shift means distancing from notions of property and ownership, and a move towards stewardship of these goods. They mirror, to a certain extent, the consolidation of human rights internationally, which, at least if Samuel Moyn is to be believed, only really took off in the 1970s.

More importantly, and closely related, this shift also prefaces a shift that took place in the field in 2003, when the Intangible Cultural Heritage Convention was approved. This instrument had been in the minds of some for a long time: the first mention to the need for such a convention dates back at least to the 1970s. And it responds to an important gap: protecting cultural manifestations which do not necessarily have a permanent physical presence. The fact that they do not have a permanent physical presence does not mean they are any less important than, say, the Great Barrier Reef. They are in fact perhaps even more important, as they are closely connected to identity. Because intangible heritage does not exist externally, it must exist internally, close to the heart of identity.

Great barrier reef

Also known as living cultures, intangible cultural heritage means “the practices, representations, expressions, knowledge, skills – as well as the instruments, objects, artefacts and cultural spaces associated therewith – that communities, groups and, in some cases, individuals recognize as part of their cultural heritage. This intangible cultural heritage, transmitted from generation to generation, is constantly recreated by communities and groups in response to their environment, their interaction with nature and their history, and provides them with a sense of identity and continuity, thus promoting respect for cultural diversity and human creativity. For the purposes of this Convention, consideration will be given solely to such intangible cultural heritage as is compatible with existing international human rights instruments, as well as with the requirements of mutual respect among communities, groups and individuals, and of sustainable development.”

More specifically, it safeguards heritage as a process, as opposed to its icons. Physical manifestations of heritage are important, to be sure, but what matters most is how people connect to heritage, and the ways in which this connection influences people’s relationship to the environment, to human rights, and others. This notion reinforces the shift in UNESCO away from heritage as a symbol of sovereignty to heritage as a symbol of shared humanity. In international law more generally, it is another instance of the erosion of sovereignty in favor of a cosmopolitan ideal where peoples, and not necessarily States, coexist in full harmony.

This brings us back to the Great Barrier Reef. Protected under the World Heritage Convention, it is still formally protected as a site, and not as a process to which people feel connected. However, people’s connections to their heritage, and the process through which this connection is entrenched, is becoming more and more part of the equation even in protecting heritage. The notion of heritage as a process, enshrined in the 2003 Intangible Heritage Convention, is spreading to other heritage regimes, and triggering the rebirth of the field, from monuments and sites to living cultures. In the Great Barrier’s case, it is now less about the Reef itself than it is about what it means for our shared humanity. The good at stake is not only coral reefs, it is now the Reef standing for a humanity hopeful in a sustainable future, hopeful in reverting the negative effects of development, and saving the reef from ourselves, for the sake of present and future generations.

Lucas Lixinksi is a Lecturer at the University of New South Wales and is author of Intangible Cultural Heritage in International Law, part of the newly launched Cultural Heritage Law and Policy series.

Oxford University Press is a leading publisher in Public International Law, including the Max Planck Encyclopedia of Public International Law, latest titles from thought leaders in the field, and a wide range of law journals and online products. We publish original works across key areas of study, from humanitarian to international economic to environmental law, developing outstanding resources to support students, scholars, and practitioners worldwide.

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Image credit: Great Barrier Reef. Photo by NickJ. Creative Commons License via Wikimedia Commons.

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