Friday, May 1, 2015

Book Week 2015

The Children's Book Week theme for 2015 is Books Light Up Our World. Book Week runs from 22-28 August. Here are 10 ideas and links to help make it the best Book Week ever. [Thanks to and the amazing kids featured for the pic above.]

1) Discover books that will get kids fired up about reading – the CBCA Awards shortlist  as well as the YABBA children's choice awards lists. I have been lucky enough to have Two Wolves shortlisted for both awards this year and My Life & Other Stuff I Made Up shortlisted for the YABBAs.

2) Join our 2015 Room to Read World Change Challenge and win free author talks from Jacquie Harvey, Oliver Phommavanh and myself as well as books from all the major publishers. Children's and teen authors are partnering with schools and students across Australia, New Zealand and Hong Kong to raise $40,000 for 40,000 books for kids in the world's poorest countries. Make a difference in Book Week 2015.

3) Enter the My Life Short Story Competition. Write a 500-word funny short story and enter my new short story competition for the chance to win $1000 cash and $1000 worth of books for your school. :)))

4) Here are some Book Week activity ideas on the Children's Book Council of Australia site. And some more on The Book Chook blog.

5)  You could book an author (or harass your teacher-librarian to book an author) to speak at your school. Here's a list of agencies. Most authors are already booked for Book Week but if your celebration falls outside the official Book Week dates, you might get lucky.

6) Run a Book Trailer-Making Competition. Each year I am the ambassador for the LitVids Book Trailer Competition for Mackay Council and each year the student entries get better and better. Here are my tips on making a great trailer over on the Australian Writer's Centre blog.

7) Use my Story Scrapbook transmedia brainstorming tool to find bookish inspiration, explore videos, images and music based on the theme, 'Books Light Up Our World' or dream up a new story of your own.

8) Jump-start writing and creativity. Try some activities in the My Life& Other Stuff I Made Up teachers' kit and lots of visual / aural creative ideas in the Two Wolves kit.

9) Check out the Teacher-Librarians' Children's Book Week wiki or Audrey Nay's Book Week Pinterest pageLots of good ideas for Books Light Up Our World activities, and a chance for you to share what you are doing.

10) Connect with me on FACEBOOKTWITTER , INSTAGRAM and YOUTUBE. Let's talk stories, create things and share the best books we've ever read.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Children's Book Council of Australia Awards 2015

Huge congrats to the authors and illustrators of the Notable and Shortlisted books for this year's Children's Book Council of Australia Awards. I'm honoured to see my book TWO WOLVES in such fine company.

Thanks to the volunteers and judges who read such an enormous number of books each year and give their time to support reading and the development of children's literature in Australia. On days like today I am reminded of how supportive and kind people in the world of Children's and Young Adult literature are.

Without the team at Penguin Random House Australia – Zoe W, Kimberley, Julie, Dot, Zoe B, Caroline, Sarana, Nerrilee, Angela and Mary – and the support and encouragement of Sophie Hamley, Catherine Drayton and John Boyne, the book would never have been seen, so thank you.

If you're looking for a good Kidlit or YAlit read, be sure to scour the lists. There are some absolute crackers:


Thursday, April 2, 2015

School Holiday Writing Workshops

I'm running school holiday writing, claymation and filmmaking workshops in Brisbane, Byron Bay and Maclean. If you're in the 'hood, I'd love you to join in.

Thursday April 9, 2015  CLAYMATION

In this fun holiday workshop you’ll learn simple hand building techniques to model expressive characters in clay and discover ways to bring them to life through the art of story telling and short film with author Tristan Bancks and his protege, kid author/illustrator Raph Atkins. Full details and bookings at:
To see the video of the kind of thing you can make in our CLAYMATION workshop go to:

Wednesday 15 April  MAKE A MOVIE IN A DAY - BYRON BAY
At this lively and interactive day-long workshop at Northern Rivers Writers Centre in Byron Bay, participants will develop their skills in script writing, editing and film making with author, actor and filmmaker Tristan Bancks. Working collaboratively in small groups, participants will develop their creative ideas into short scripts which will be woven into short film creations. Using readily available technology, participants will learn how they can extend their own script writing, story boarding and filmmaking whilst working in a fun, creative environment. Full details and bookings:


Do you want to extend your creative writing skills? If so, join 30 likeminded young people at the State Library of QLD over three jam-packed days in a fun, collaborative and relaxed workshop series led by a team of professional writers. 

(NB: This one may already be fully booked.)


How can you use all the odd, boring, funny stuff that happens to you and turn it into excellent stories? Author Tristan Bancks used bits from his life to inspire his short story collections. For ages 8 to 11, learn how to mine your own life for cool, weird, funny stories that your friends and teachers will love. Free workshop 9am-Midday. Maclean Library: (02) 6645 3611


Thursday, March 26, 2015

Would You Rather?

I recently played a rather funny game of 'Would You Rather...?' with Booktopia TV host, Jack-Black-alike and funnyman, Andrew Cattanach.

He poses some of the most challenging questions of our time, like 'Would you rather have $100 cash or $500 worth of cheese sticks?' Must-see TV and a chilling insight into the mind of a children's and teen author.

P.S. Booktopia has some signed copies My Life books 2 & 3 available now.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Advice For Young Writers

Here are my top ten writing tips for children published recently in Just Kidding Magazine. I hope you find lots of inspiration. I learnt much of this while writing the My Life series of short stories.

You can find more tips, story starters and interviews with some brilliant children's authors over on my Create page. Or, if you write a funny short story, you might want to enter my new short story competition for a chance to win some great prizes.

Teachers and parents should also take a peek at 'Tall Stories', a recent article in Haven Magazine that I contributed to on how to spark a child's imagination.

© Tristan Bancks | Australian Children's & Teen Author | Kids' & YA Books. All rights reserved.
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