Friday, November 30, 2012

PS: Who Stole Santa's Mail? Blog Tour

When one of your dear friends celebrates the release of her debut children's book, it's time for no-holds-barred fun. And when she asks you to launch said book, the honour is very special indeed. In fact scouring through op shops for just the right outfit to wear suddenly becomes your number one priority.

This last weekend I had the very great pleasure of launching Dimity Powell's chapter book, PS: Who Stole Santa's Mail? (Morris Publishing) at Marks and Gardner Gallery on Mt Tamborine.

Filled with feisty characters, seat-of-your-pants drama and loads of Christmas cracker jokes, Dimity Powell's children's book, PS: Who Stole Santa's Mail? will bring the magic of believing into your home. Dragging along his jellybean-eating sidekick Tobii, nearly nine-year-old Sam Doolan's irrepressible optimism and determination to solve the mystery of the disappearing mail takes the reader on an action-packed journey full of mystery, mayhem and magic. It simply is a must-have for your Christmas stocking.

Dimity is a passionate and strong advocate of children’s literature, a member of Book Links Qld and a supporter of the Read-Up program. Her children's stories have been published in The School Magazine, Australia’s leading magazine for school children, and a variety of online sites, and she has won and been short-listed for numerous awards for her writing. Also a bubbly and fun person to be with (just like her stories), I’m really proud to have her visit with me Under the Apple Tree today.

Marks and Gardner Secret Garden
Hi Dimity! Welcome to my blog, Under the Apple Tree and congratulations! Grab a spot here on the picnic blanket. Have you recovered yet from all the excitement of PS: Who Stole Santa's Mail? 's release?

Almost! Over the past couple of weeks, I’ve celebrated the release of my first children’s chapter book with fabulous book launches, thrilling visits to schools and one of the most exhilarating cyber sleigh rides I’ve ever been on . And now, sitting in the shade of your fragrant apple tree, resting a while with my loyal reindeer, I’m able to reflect on it a little.

The book launch is under way
Here's Mrs Claus (aka me) rounding up the troops and getting the crowd excited.
Ha ha, yes. And may I offer you some apple pie? You had a great turn out of people for your launch on Sunday and the kids were laughing so hard at all your Christmas jokes. For me, connecting with my readers on a personal level is one of the perks of the job.
Introducing the star of the day, author Dimity Powell.

Absolutely! There’s been an amazing amount of support and excitement surrounding PS: Who Stole Santa’s Mail? I do love the froth and bubble of it all, but perhaps the most satisfying part of debuting my first children’s book has been watching the kids’ reactions. They’ve laughed and pondered, and best of all, read my words with such genuine enthusiasm, that I’ve been moved to tears. That has been my most tremendous writing achievement to date; that kids enjoy reading my stories!

Yes, it's a wonderful recognition of your talent and ability to connect with that age group. Engaging children in the joy of reading is like being Wonder Woman. I like to say: "I'm a children's author. What's your super power?"

Wonder Women: Renee Taprell, Dimity Powell and Angela Sunde (myself)
Angela, it’s proof positive to me that miracles really do happen; we just have to learn to recognise them, appreciate them and maintain them for as long as possible.

Dimity Powell's beautiful smile
I agree. So, what's your secret, Dimity, to maintaining that magic something? How do you go about holding on to all that passion and energy for your writing?

By being:
v  Bold – don’t hold back, on yourself or your dreams. Go for it.
v  Brave – don’t be afraid to take risks, with your writing or desires. It’s ok to hang around your comfort zone, but it’s exciting stepping out of it now and then.
v  Brilliant – if I fail at all else, I try to be at least professional and charming at all times – try to be. I’ve followed this credo since my college days because from here, you can be anything else you wish. Then, you can aim high. Being brilliant is hard work. Prepare well for it.
v  Believing – because without it (belief) you’re nothing but an out of work, vengeful, misguided little elf.

Ah! Like the evil elf in PS:Who Stole Santa's Mail?

In the words of Roald Dahl: 
'Those who don’t believe in magic will never find it.’

I reckon he’s right. So did Sam in my story. What do you think?

Hmm, Sam certainly did believe in magic and in himself. I'd love to hear how my readers feel about the power of believing. Please drop us a comment below.

Mrs Claus and Dimity

Well, Dimity, this is the end of our quiet moment together Under the Apple Tree. Happily for me, I know we'll be seeing lots of each other in the future. Thanks so much for stopping by and for including me in your celebrations. How about a second slice of pie? I haven't got any jelly beans.

Thank you, I will. And Tobii is the one who loves jelly beans, not me.

(Editor's note: Angela and Dimity kept munching apple pie and sipping tea for many hours on that blanket Under the Apple Tree, talking about writerly kids stuff, unbeknown to them that their readers were waiting to say goodbye. So just let yourselves out, thanks.)

PS: Who Stole Santa's Mail? Blog Tour LINK


Dee White said...

Love this post, Angela and Dimity - full of excitement and fun.

Angela, you make a gorgeous Mrs Claus. Dimity I'm so glad the launch went well and I love your enthusiasm for Christmas. Good luck to you and Sam - may you find your way into many libraries, schools and homes:)


Sheryl Gwyther said...

Hey there, Mrs Claus. I knew that dress would look spectacular! :)
Congratulations to Dimity again, and well done, the both of you on the launch at Mt Tamborine. xx

DimbutNice said...

Angela, I'm so full of pie I can barely move. What an honour and a privilege to share the picnic rug and shade with you. It's been a blast and I can think of no better way to end than here, where strangely, I feel like I began...under a similar fruit tree in my own backyard as a child, consuming books.Such bliss. Thankyou again. May I stay a bit longer?

DimbutNice said...

Thanks Dee. So lovely to wind up in one of my favourite places with one of my favourite gals. (you can't beat Mrs Claus ;-)) Sam and I are championing away Dee and loving it. Seems the kids are too which is the best Chrissy pressie of all for me. Dimity

DimbutNice said...

Cheers Sheryl. It was a real surprise to see Mrs Claus arrive - literally. What an honour!

Unknown said...

Thank you for sharing your magical post Mrs Claus and D..i..m..i..t..y.. my two beautiful friends.

I want to be back there on the Mountain. The photos of your special day Dimity are awesome. I hope you don't mind me sharing some.

Merry Christmas.

DimbutNice said...

Share away Renee. Me too! The mountain, that place is magical. But you guys made it so by being there :-)

Angela Sunde. said...

Dimity and Renee, let's all stay for as long as we like. I think Mary and Janene won't notice if we hide away behind some bushes in the secret garden. :)

Angela Sunde. said...

Thanks for calling by, Dee. It really was a super fun day and just perfect weather too - not too hot yet.

Angela Sunde. said...

Ha ha, thanks, Sheryl! I did have to alter it slightly. Thanks for stopping by. Do you believe in magic?

Sally O said...

Lovely post and the pics tell a thousand words each:-)

DimbutNice said...

So true Sally but Angela does tell a story well too. Thanks for visiting us.