Earlier this term I had the opportunity to attend a most captivating conversation between Newbery award winning children’s author, Kate DiCamillo and Australian Author/Illustrator, Sally Rippin, at The Wheeler Centre. Kate’s delightful personality immediately captured the audience, provoking a sense of the warmth and whimsy that dances through the pages of her books. During the conversation, Kate spoke of the perseverance needed to become a professional writer, however she noted how lucky she feels that this career can nurture her fondness of people-watching, to be written off as ‘research’! Kate also promoted the act of reading for pleasure as both an inspiration and necessity to write successfully. She still reads old childhood favourites today, to investigate the way classic authors weaved words into magic.
Perhaps the most exciting part of the night was seeing Ruyton girls Sophie (Year 3) and Francesca (Year 5) and their sisters Olivia and Georgina (both Year 1) attending with their mothers. We discussed afterwards how natural Kate is as a story-teller and agreed we could have listened to her wonderful stories all night! The girls were thrilled to be able to have their books signed by Kate and capture a photo together to remember a very special evening.