Busy in Brissy

Today’s blog post is coming to you from Busy-Brissy, where I have been loving the chance to connect with readers of all ages – and writing buddies, too. (Though I’ve also missed catching up with a couple, thanks Covid.๐Ÿ˜ฟ)

Thank-you St Johns Year 7, and St Peters Yr 5 for the warm welcome and wonderful interactions with staff and students. (The snails and I appreciated it!)

At St Peters, every child had read at least one of my verse novels. (And some kids had read three!) Any author event is special, and I love that there are always standout moments in each session – but when kids have read so many of your works, they really understand how you tick… and their questions – their thirst for information! – reflect that. I started the session asking them what they like about verse novels… and they gushed wisdom. I wish I could recall word-for-word the beautiful ways they expressed their appreciation. I can’t.ย One gem; ‘I love how your words make pictures. You make me feel like I’ve stepped into the story.’ Their insights have filled my cup and reignited my passion.


Gems of Wisdom
(Inspired by students)

shape poetry
and imagery
draw readers
into the story

less words
all story

eyes follow
placement places
(and paces)
on the page

can’t miss

the feelings

Draft ยฉ Kathryn Apel

Following the third session on my second day, someone commented that I must be exhausted – but I was not! I was energised. I love the chance to share a passion for poetry with kids. (And I’m rather delighted that kids are as fascinated as I am, by snails.)

It was wonderful to meet the librarian who has written the (excellent!) Teachers’ Notes for my UQP books, Christina Wheeler. I’ve always said that if I was the teacher, using my books in the classroom, I would do exactly what Christina has done with my books in the Teachers’ Notes. (I just didn’t know it was Christina until recently.๐Ÿ™ƒ)

And then it was just a hop, skip and jump to meet my publisher Clair Hume and publicist, Jean at UQP. (Wish we’d grabbed a pic, too!)

As if that wasn’t ticking enough boxes, I then got to follow it all up with cuppa and cake with one of my faves, the darling of Brisbane, Samantha Wheeler.

On Saturday, I start school holiday sessions with Brisbane Libraries, including; Toowong, Garden City, Ashgrove, Carindale, Holland Park, Mt Ommaney, Brisbane Square & West End. (Also Helensvale on the Gold Coast.) Bookings are essential, through relevant libraries, and sessions vary – so check to see what is offered, if you live in Brisbane. (Saturday session; Toowong (PB reading/farm themes) and Garden City (teens poetry workshop).

Aside from all this wonderful creative cup-filling, I have been filling my car with prayers (and thanksgiving) as I navigate city traffic in my beautiful little blue Rav. (I cannot tell you how many hours I have stressed this, over recent months!)

Staying Car-lm

Car navigation system
as clear as the confusion
of criss-crossing


Heidi atย my juicy little universe is hosting the Poetry Friday community this week. I look forward to popping in and out during my travels over the coming week – though I may not get to comment much, sorry. I will be on the hop – in that little blue Rav.๐Ÿ’™ Stay safe!


  1. Sounds like you have had an amazing time Kat – and those students are very lucky to have had you visit. Your ‘recalculating’ line had me giggling. I swear the gps voice sighs and rolls its eyes every time it says that.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I love working with kids. It’s the jam and cream (real, whipped cream) of writing for kids. As to the GPS… We are starting to speak the same language!!๐Ÿคช (Though I still find the multiple options overwhelming. And prefer streets to motorways, any day!!)


  2. This is such a fun post to read. I understand being energized by excited learners and I’m so happy for you to get to spend time with students, librarians, and other writers. What a wonderful time for you. I have no sense of how far you are from home…but miles don’t matter. You are with exactly the people you need to be with right now. What a tremendous gift. Have fun at the libraries! I’ll say a prayer for you in your little blue RAV too. I know you can do it–with or without the recalculations.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Not only am I loving my interactions with readers (young and old) I am also staying with my cousin and his wife/family – and that is precious! Love this gang. It’s a six-hour drive – so have that to look forward to again, this week๐Ÿคช – but it has been so good to have this time! Thankyou for your prayers!๐Ÿ’™


  3. I love hearing that all the kids in that school had read at least one of your books, Kat. That’s a celebration to have right there! It’s a post that’s so joyful, it made me smile all the way through, including about the car. I just got a new one last year, also recalculating! And, I finally have a copy of What Snail Knows, will read it soon!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Every author visit brings standout moments – but I tell you, that school was chocka-block full, because of all the insights and the wealth of wonderful questions they had. So glad my post brought you joy. And that you have Snail! Thank-you, Linda.๐ŸŒ

      Liked by 1 person

  4. It is a joy to see and read the students’ connection to you and your work, Kat.
    I love this succinct review:
    “less words
    all story” – Brava!


  5. Kat, I am arriving here late but I want to congratulate you on the excitement you brought to young readers at your author visit. I was impressed that the children could provide you with amazing comments that show their love of reading in verse books. I also saw that you are in sandals when we are bundling up again. Here’s to good weather and continued success!


  6. I’m sure those students are energized by you, too. How fun to be with students as an author. Your navigation poem is funny…recalculating. Always!


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