Triple Blog Nomination

I would like to say sorry, it’s taken me so long to write this post and thank you to Francesca from A Smith’s World for nominating me for these awards (Versatile Blogger, Real Neat Blog Award, and the Premio Dardos Award).



The questions and my answers:

  1. If you can be any superhero, who would you be? Spiderman  
  2. If you are given a magic seed, you can throw it in the ground and it will grow whatever you want, what would it be?  A 3-course meal tree – no more cooking dinners!
  3. Things that make you tick?    Helping others, creating things.
  4. Things that drive you to reach your goals.   My kids and wanting to succeed.  

     5. What makes a good day?  Getting things done, lots of laughter and hugs, a bit of reading and a bit of writing.

     6. What was your dream job when you were a kid?  Teacher or nurse

      7.  Water, Juice, or Soda?  Water












IC Blog Tour

Thanks to Lyndal at Delia Writes for inviting me on the IC Blog Tour. I have been following “Delia Writes” for some time now and her exciting journey to self-publication. “Delia’s Perfectly Pink Earmuffs” has now been published and printed and is a gorgeous children’s picture book.


The IC Blog’s focus is ‘A great way to elevate meaningful conversation and connections!’  For more information about Insightful Communications Publishing click here.
Below is a set of questions I have answered, that I hope will assist in the writing journey.

Here are the questions:

1. What are your tips for creating meaningful content?

I have a little notebook that I write down quotes, ideas, things that I read or hear on the news or in a movie or things that my friends/family say that might fit into one of my stories one day.

A few years ago I participated in Katherine Battersby’s How to Write a Children’s Book and I also participated in Blogging 101 where I learnt new skills about blogging and writing.  Every year I attend the CYA conference in Brisbane to listen to authors tell their story of what/how they write and their journey to publication and as well as meeting lots of lovely authors, I always pick up lots of tips and new ideas.

2. Books: Everyone has a story, some a book. If you’ve written a book, what was your creative process? What encouragement would you give others just beginning their book writing journey?

After I’d written a couple of children’s picture book manuscripts I sent them to an editor for a manuscript appraisal and she was very helpful, informing me about the structure of a picture book and what she liked/disliked about my stories.   She said, “You’ve got some really good ideas, you just don’t know how to write.”  I was horrified at first but these were my first attempts so I worked hard to improve them.

I then started entering stories in writing competitions – the feedback is invaluable and after a few years it was great to achieve a first place, second place and third place – built up confidence and encouraged me to keep on going.   I also submitted stories to anthologies and magazines.  There’s always somebody looking for flash fiction, poems, short stories and there are loads of writing competitions out there too.

I try to attend writing courses, book launches and author talks whenever I can.  I have found that a lot of these are free through my local libraries.  Following other writers’ blogs is another way to learn new things and stay in touch with what’s going on in the world of writing and publishing.

I’m also a member of  Creative Kids’ Tales and they have competitions, tips for writing and highlight emerging authors and illustrators.

Lastly, every year I submit one or two stories into the ASA Mentorship Program Award, hoping to be allocated a mentor to help me get my story up to a publishable standard.

3. What advice would you give your younger self?

Don’t give up – keep on writing.  Even if nobody else ever reads it, it’s still fun and creative and I know my kids love my stories anyway!!

4. What are you working on now, and how can we, as a community, help?

I am still working on my junior fiction chapter book that I started 3 years ago and I’m also having a go at writing a YA novel (started it last November during NaNoWriMo) and hope to finish it this November.

I’ve been thinking about applying for a grant so I can do a paid mentorship program so if anyone has any tips about applying for a grant I’d love to hear about them.

Thanks for reading.  If you’d like to join the tour and inform people about your writing please do and link back here.

Have a great weekend.

Blog Tour Award

Thanks to Millie Thom for nominating me for the Blog Tour Award.  Check out her blog as she is a fantastic writer and participates in a lot of writing events which I enjoy reading – Friday Fictioneers, Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers, Word of the Week (WOW) and Mondays Finish the Story.

This award involves answering four questions about writing.

Here are the rules:

  • Compose a one-time post on a specific Monday (date given from your nomination – I was given either April 6 or April 13)
  • Give them the rules and a specific Monday to post by.  My nominees can post on Monday 27 April.
  • Pass the tour on to up to four other bloggers.
  • Answer four questions about your creative process which lets other bloggers and visitors know what inspires you to do what you do.

Here are the four questions and my answers . . .

Q.1. What are you working on at the moment?

At the moment I am still working on my junior fiction chapter book that I started about 3 years ago.  I first wrote the story as a  1000 word children’s story for a writing competition but then decided I wanted to turn into a chapter book.  It’s now over 7000 words and I’m up to my 9th draft.  However, I still have a couple of more chapters to add to it before I then read it again and again, no doubt changing and adding more adventures along the way.

My goal was to complete it and have it ready to send in to an agent by the end of June 2015 (before I go back to work) but I’ve been a bit obsessed with blogging and writing flash fiction lately that I haven’t even looked at it!  Doesn’t matter.  Every bit of writing is good practise and I will just aim to have it finished by the end of the year instead.

I am also working on a number of children’s picture book manuscripts – some to enter in competitions and some to send off to publishers.

Q.2. How does your work differ from others in your genre?

My children’s chapter book is about a group of boys who love books and reading.   They are on a mission to find the best book ever written.  However, after finding an ancient book of spells and accidentally unleashing a torrent of spells, the five friends set off on an adventure through the fun fair.  They must work together and use their wits and imagination to find clues and solve riddles in order to banish the curse.

The story is for all kids but I wrote it with the idea of encouraging boys to read.  I’m hoping that they will enjoy reading about all the magical adventures and fun that these boys have.

Q.3. Why do you write or create what you do?

I love writing stories for children.  Picture books only have a small amount of words and you really have to make them count. I like the challenge of trying to show, not tell, letting the illustrations tell a lot of the story.   I started writing stories just for fun to read to my children.  I enjoyed it so much that I decided that I wanted to learn all the ins and outs of writing a children’s picture book so I got an editor to look at some of my stories, I googled lots of information, I went to a number of writing conferences and I continued writing stories every spare minute I had.

When I sent my first story off for a manuscript assessment, the editor said, “You have interesting ideas and your stories have potential… What lets you down is your writing.”   Her words encouraged me to improve.  I also found entering competitions very useful as the feedback is incredibly helpful.

Q.4. How does your writing/creative process work?

I do a variety of things:

*  Jot down the main story line (beginning, middle and end) and the characters.

*  Make a story web with the problem in the middle and the solutions/adventures branching out from it.

*  I have a sheet for each character with their name, appearance, strengths, weaknesses, quirks, fears, desires etc.

*  I write chapter by chapter, editing bits and pieces as I go, but also going back after a few chapters to add or rearrange.

*  I have a notebook ready to write down any funny sayings or things that I might see or read about that I think would be good to add into my story.

*  Once the whole story is finished I will read over it again and again and again – probably proofreading forever!

*  Over the years I have been trying to win a mentorship program whereby a professional would work with me to get my story up to a publishable standard.   This year I would also like to have a go at applying for a grant to have an editor assess my work.

Well, that’s enough about me…

I nominate:

Vanessa at Romance Done Write

Az at Tastyniblets

Ameena at Randoms by a Random

Claire Fuller

Better Late than Never – Liebster Award 2

Thank you to Waffles and Marie from Full-Time who nominated me for the Liebster Award.  I really appreciate all the wonderful support and lovely comments I’ve had on my blog over the last couple of months.  Thank you to all my new followers too.  Since participating in the Blogging 101 course in March 2015 I have learnt so many new things to enhance my blog and have visited/followed many fantastic blogs.

Questions from Waffles:

1, What is the one thing that gives you the most happiness in life? My two children.
2, What are you most afraid of and why? Big hairy spiders- especially after one, the size of a plate, reared up and hissed at my husband under our house.  

3, What was the first book you remember buying for yourself? It would’ve been a Stephen King novel for sure.  I have many on my bookshelf.  Possibly “Misery”. 
4, Countryside or city and why?  Countryside – I like big back yards and lots of open space and I don’t like driving in  big cities.
5, If you had to chose one thing that has happened in the world during your lifetime that stands out in your memory what would it be?  The tragic death of Princess Diana.
6, Dogs or cats or neither? I’ve got two cats but wouldn’t mind a small dog.
7, Why do you blog?  To improve my writing, to meet new people and learn new things by reading other blogs and hopefully to help, entertain and inspire.
8, What is your favourite fruit?  Watermelon
9, If you could stop doing one thing what would it be?  Stop worrying about the future and just live day by day.
10, What would your perfect/dream career be? Writer of children’s books or work in a library.
11, Where would your perfect holiday destination be?  Disneyland 

Questions from Marie:

1.) Describe your most embarrassing moment.  At boarding school, I was in the shower when one of the other girls decided to be funny and kick the door in!  

2.) What’s one of your favorite movies?  Love Actually 

3.) The beach or the mountains?  Why?  This is a tricky one.  I could do both: rug up in the mountains beside a warm fire with a glass of wine or laze about on the sand, reading a book.

4.) If you could go back to any time in history when would it be? Either 1533 to meet Anne Boleyn and King Henry Vlll or 2550 BC to watch the pyramids being built.  

Photo from

5.) What is your favorite meal of the day?  Dinner – there’s always more variety as I have more time to prepare it.

And now for the rules.
1. Link the person who nominated you (that’s me) to your blog post and let them know you answered their questions.
2. Answer the questions given to you by the nominator.
3. Nominate other bloggers for the award.
4. Create questions for your nominees to answer.
5. Let the nominees know that they have been nominated by going to their blog and notifying them.

I’m going to nominate some inspiring blogs that I have recently come across:

Liz’s blog “The Blog Of Happy Things” – the title says it all! 🙂

Good Woman – threads of my life

Silverstein Potter – and other fictitious ramblings

Lastly, here are your questions:

1) What is one of your favourite songs?

2) If someone gave you $5000 what would you buy?

3) What is the first thing you do when you get up in the morning?

4) Which famous person would you like to meet?  Why?

5)  What country would you like to visit and why?

Liebster Award

Today, three years ago I first signed up to WordPress and created my blog – Rachel’s Book Nook.  (I just received a little Happy Anniversary note from WordPress!) Over the years, I’ve just been plodding along writing a post here and there and following a few other bloggers.

Participating in Blogging 101 these last three weeks has really been an eye-opener. I have changed the look of my blog completely, learnt lots of new things about menus, widgets, blogrolls, picmonkey and pingbacks, met lots of new bloggers and read funny and inspiring posts, followed a stack more blogs and written more posts than I ever have written before!  I’ve even been nominated for some awards…

So without rambling on anymore, I would like to thank Sarah BestIzzy-Grabs-Life and A Smith’s World for nominating me for the Liebster Award. The Liebster Award is for bloggers who have less than 200 or 300 followers, who you think others need to know about.

Instead of answering all 33 questions I thought I’d just answer a few from each person.
Here goes:

From Sarah:
What was your favourite TV show when you were growing up?
Family Ties

If given the chance/opportunity, would you make blogging and writing a full-time career?
Yes, Yes, Yes!!!

Cheese or chocolate?
Definitely Chocolate

Do you like scary films?

From Izzy:
You’re in trouble. Why?
I’ve forgotten to put petrol in the car and we’re running late.

You go into your kitchen. What do you grab?
A bowl of ice-cream.

You’re crying. Why?
I’m watching a sad movie.

You’re going on an ideal date? Who are you with and what are you guys doing?
I’m with Colin Firth and we’re at the Races. (horse racing)

From Francesca:
What first inspired you to write?
My 4 year old (at the time) daughter.

So far, what is the funniest thing that you have witnessed?
I’d just given birth to my second baby and Miss 4 walks into the room and the first thing she says is “Where are the chips?”

What is your preferred genre of reading material?

Are you a closed or open door?
I’m half-way open.

Well there you go…
Thanks for reading.

Daydreamer Award

How exciting, my first award!  The lovely Edwina over at Edwina’s Episodes has nominated me for the Daydreamer Award. This is an award for blogs that are inspiring, creative or funny.

Here are the rules:

1. Thank the person who gave you the award. (Thanks very much Edwina!!)

2. Complete the challenge they set you.

3. Select a blog or blogs that you want to give the award to. (The amount of blogs you select is unlimited!)

4. Tell them about it and set them a challenge.

(Please include the rules in your post).

Here are the talented people I am nominating:

Delia Writes – one writer’s picture book adventures

Turquoise Dreams – luminous adventures in art, spirit and life.

The Sewing Nook – having fun crafting and sewing.

Your challenge:  To write about your dream designer outfit.

My challenge was to write about my dream destination and you can read about it here.

Kids’ Book-Review Monthly Writing Challenge

A few posts ago I wrote about the Kids’ Book-Review Unpublished Picture Book Award (you can read about it here.) The Kids’ Book-Review site also has a monthly writing challenge where you can submit a children’s story (500 words or less) on a certain theme (due on the 25th of each month).  For a list of themes and how to submit click here. It’s a lot of fun and gets you thinking outside the box, trying to be creative as you can.

Each month, four stories are selected and published on their website (one story every Friday throughout the month). March’s theme was BOOKS and I was very excited to receive an email saying that my story “Bookshop of Hope” had been selected and was being published on the website on Friday 6th March.  If you’d like to read “Bookshop of Hope” or other stories from the challenge click here.  The theme for April is MUSIC (due in 25th March) so get your thinking caps on and start writing!