‘My Life As a Book’ is what Kat’s session was about, and a wonderful one at that!
Kat grew up on a farm and still lives on a farm with her husband and her two sons.
It is an exciting life living on a farm, you get to pull bulldozers out of the mud, build amazing cubby houses and have boat races on the dam. Living on a farm, you have so much fun, you don’t need a TV. That’s right, Kat and her family don’t own a TV! They do read a lot, and that works out just fine, because Kat has written some great books for everyone to read.
Kat first talked about her book ‘This is the Mud’ and how a real life story of a bulldozer stuck in the mud and a bull stuck in a grid inspired this story of a stranded cow.
Kat has also written two verse novels, the first one, Bully on the Bus, was also inspired by her own life, remembering the times when kids were mean on the bus when she was little and the times her sons dreaded going on the school bus because of a bully.
There was quite a bit of discussion around bullying and how people don’t always realise they are doing it, and what to do when you are being bullied, such as talking to your Mum and Dad. They may not be able to fix it straight away, but things will change for the better.
Kat explained what a verse novel is and how the words themselves become illustrations on the page. She shared some shape poems with ideas on how to write your own.
Several children acted out her picture book in a mini play during her session, everyone had a look at how the illustrations for her picture books were changed to make them as close to real farm life as possible and Kat managed to do all of this and more in less than one hour!
Kathryn Apel is an Aussie children’s author who writes too much. She paints pictures with words, because much as she’d love to, Kat can’t draw. Kat’s goal is to find the perfect word for every situation. Sometimes that’s a lot harder than you think!
Yvonne Mes, Author of Meet Sidney Nolan and Oliver’s Grumbles http://www.yvonnmes.com