Not to be missed book launches at the Asian Festival of Children’s Content ~ May 25 – 30th, Singapore

Thursday, May 23rd, 2013

AFCC logoWhile attending the 2011 Asian Festival of Children’s Content I met and spent time with three wonderful children/young adult authors: Chris Cheng from Australia, Dave Seow from Singapore and Jane Houng from Hong Kong. Interestingly enough, I ran into all 3 of them again at the 2012 Bologna Children’s Book Fair, and am looking forward to seeing them all again next week at the 2013 Asian Festival of Children’s Content. Besides being involved with AFCC panel sessions and workshops, each of them will also be doing a book launch during the Festival. Each launch takes place at the AFCC venue, the National Library of Singapore, and you are more than welcome to come join in the celebrations. I know that I will be there!

paw_sm3Dave Seow, Sunday, May 26th 4:45pm

Emma’s Elephant ~ Emma has an elephant named Ella. She’s no ordinary elephant but an invisible elephant, but if Ella likes you, she’ll let you see her.

paw_sm3Jane Houng, Wednesday, May 29th 11:15am

Bloodswell –  is a young adult novel suitable for readers over the age of sixteen. Billed as “a fast-paced vampire saga infused with the sights, people and atmosphere of Hong Kong”, it’s a story of intense teenage friendships, dangerous secrets and forbidden love. Read Asian Review of Books’ review here.

paw_sm3Chris Cheng, Wednesday, May 29th 1:45pm (Project Splash! Asia launch) and 7:30pm (SCBWI dinner)

Water ~ 2013 is designated as the International Year of Water Cooperation. This book is a celebration of water and its importance to our existence. Illustrator Susanna Goho-Quek’s beautiful illustrations are created with acrylic, water colour and pen on paper, canvas and plastic sheet. All proceeds from the sale of this title—an original contribution to the Project Splash! Asia collection to be launched at AFCC2013—go towards furthering the mission of the Asian Festival of Children’s ContentProject Splash! Asia, is a first collection and bibliography of children’s books from Asia on a common theme—water. More information about Water and Project Splash! Asia is here.


PaperTigers 10th Anniversary: Two Top-Ten picks of Chinese-themed Australian books by Chris Cheng

Monday, November 12th, 2012

In this final post in our 10th Anniversary Top-10 series, we present not one but two book lists from Australian author Chris Cheng, both with a Chinese theme.  The first focuses on picture books and the second on middle-grade/YA fiction.

Chris is the author of more than forty books for children of all ages, including two books in Scholastic’s My Australia series, The Melting Pot and New Gold Mountain, which explores racially-based conflicts on the New South Wales goldfields during the 1860s. Before becoming a full-time writer, Chris was a primary school teacher and then spent almost eight years teaching in the Education Centre of Taronga Zoo in Sydney, where he established Australia’s first Zoomobile.  He has written many non-fiction titles about animals and the environment, and do read this Personal View he wrote for us a few years ago, Drawing from eco-riches: Australia’s environment in children’s books.

Chris is just coming to the end of his stint as an ambassador for Australia’s National Year of Reading.  He is currently co-chair of the International Advisory Board for SCBWI and is Co-Regional Advisor for Australia and New Zealand.  As well as his website and author blog, do check out Chris’ New Kidz Books In Oz blog; and he reports on Asian, Australian and New Zealand books for Cynsations, where you can also read an interview.


(Current) Top-10 Australian Books with a Chinese theme X 2 by Chris Cheng

Far out… you want to limit this list to 10… that is night on soooooo difficult. We are a multicultural country with immigrants from many other places around the world coming to Australia and being integral to the foundation stones on which modern Australia is constructed.

So these are my ‘current’ top 10 favs of a multicultural nature – all by Australians and all have a Chinese theme … biased I know … and they don’t include my books!

Picture Books:

~ The Arrival by Shaun Tan (Lothian, 2006)

~ Big Dog by Libby Gleeson, illustrated by Armin Greder (Scholastic Australia, 2004)

~ The Boss by Allan Baillie, illustrated by Fiona O’Beirne (Scholastic, 1992)

~ Fang Fang’s Chinese New Year by Sally Rippin (Omnibus Books, 1996)

~ The Kinder Hat by Morag Loh, illustrated by Donna Rawlins (Ashton Scholastic, 1985)

~ Moon Bear Rescue by Kim Dale (Lothian, 2006)

~ The Peasant Prince by Li Cunxin, illustrated by Anne Spudvilas (Viking/Penguin Australia, 2007)

~ The Race for the Chinese Zodiac by Gabrielle Wang, illustrated by Sally Rippin (Walker Books Australia, 2010)

~ Rebel by Allan Baillie, illustrated by Di Wu (Phoenix Education, 2011)

~ The River by Libby Hathorn, illustrated by Stanley Wong (Asian Education Foundation/Curriculum Corporation (Australia), 2001)


~ The China Coin by Allan Baillie (Penguin Group Australia, 1992)

~ Dragonkeeper by Carole Wilkinson (Macmillan, 2003)

~ Foreign Devil by Christine Harris (Random House Australia, 1999)

~ The Garden of Empress Cassia by Gabrielle Wang (Puffin Australia, 2002/Kane Miller, 2011)

~ Garden of the Purple Dragon by Carole Wilkinson (Macmillan, 2005)

~ A Ghost in my Suitcase by Gabrielle Wang (Puffin Australia, 2009)

~ Hungry Ghosts by Sally Heinrich (Hachette Australia, 2007)

~ Just One Wish by Sally Rippin (Penguin Group Australia, 2009)

~ The Secret Life of Maeve Lee Kwong by Kirsty Murray (Paw Prints, 2008)

~ Year of the Tiger by Alison Lloyd (Penguin Group Australia, 2008)

The Asian Festival of Children’s Content (AFCC) Trailer

Tuesday, April 10th, 2012

PaperTigers is proud to be a co-sponsor of the Asian Festival of Children’s Content (AFCC) which is held annually in Singapore. The 2012 AFCC will take place May 26 – 29 and programme directors Dr. Myra Garces-Bacsal and Dr Nancy Johnson are hard at work ensuring that this year’s programme is as chock-full (perhaps even more so!) as the 2011 programme.  To learn more about what the AFCC is all about, check out this video from the 2011 Festival which features interview clips with Mr. Ramachandran (Executive Director of the NBDCS), award winning authors Chris Cheng and Pooja Makhijani, as well as myself.

Bologna Book Fair – SCBWI Duelling Artists

Wednesday, March 21st, 2012

We didn’t manage to be there for the full two hours but the SCBWI stand at the Bologna Book Fair was even more the place to be from 12.00-2.00 today, when authors from across the regions read their own unpublished manuscript and two (later, I think, three) illustrators battled it out to draw the illustrations.

We caught most of Paul O. Zelinsky (on the left) and Bob Barner (right) working up a frenzy with a fun counting book from Kathleen Ahrens (and John Shelley on guitar!). When it came to 10, they pulled the flip charts together and joined forces…

Then Lesley Vamos (left) and Serena Geddes (right) illustrate a story written and read by Chris Cheng:

Sadly, we had to leave before the end but you can see pictures of the whole session on Chris Cheng’s blog.

SCBWI Booth at the 2012 Bologna Children’s Book Fair

Tuesday, March 20th, 2012

The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators’ Booth at the Bologna Children’s Book Fair is quite the happening place. Here are some photos of authors and illustrators we have met over the past 2 days!















PaperTigers’ Corinne Robson with Ken Quek, SCBWI Singapore and Festival Manager of the 2012 Asian Festival of Children’s Content (AFCC) to be held this coming May in Singapore.








PaperTigers’ Majorie Coughlan with author Dave Seow,  Singapore








The SCBWI Australian contingent: Serena Geddes, Lesley VamosDeb Abela, and Chris Cheng.













Chris Cheng and his book Sounds Spooky.











SCBWI New Zealand display, SCBWI Australia display

Asian Festival of Children’s Content ~ May 25th

Thursday, May 26th, 2011

It was a day chock full of amazing presentations and meeting wonderful people. Today promises to be another exciting day and starts soon so for today’s blog post I will just upload some images from yesterday.  Once I return home from Singapore I promise to expand on some of the panel discussions I attended.

The Venue: The Arts House is Singapore’s first court house and former parliament house which is now and an arts and heritage venue.









Keynote speaker Stephen Mooser (USA) delivers the keynote speech “What is the Future of Children’s Publishing”?









Author and literacy advocate Christopher Cheng (Australia) “It Takes Two (or More) to Tango: Collaborating with an Illustrator, Musician, or Animator









Asian Festival of Children’s Content Starts Today!

Wednesday, May 25th, 2011

Today is the day! The Asian Festival of Children’s Content starts in a few hours with the Keynote Speech “What is the Future of Children’s Publishing” by Stephen Mooser (USA). After that the day is jam-packed with events to choose from. I will be attending sessions by Christopher Cheng (Australia), illustrator YangSook Choi (Korea), author Holly Thompson (Japan/USA), Pooja Makhijani (Singapore/USA) and John McKenzie (New Zealand).

Last night’s pre-festival panel discussion that I hosted with Tarie Sabido (Asia in the Heart, World on the Mind) and Dr. Myra Garces-Bacsal (Gathering Books) was a success. Over 40 people attended and took part in our discussion Building a Nation of Readers via Web 2.0: An Introduction to Kidlitosphere and the YA Blogosphere . Thanks to all those who attended and a special thanks to Tarie and Myra who were such lovely ladies to work with!











SCBWI Member of the Year: Chris Cheng

Wednesday, August 25th, 2010

Chris ChengEach year, the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) presents a Member of the Year Award to a member who has given outstanding service to the organization. This year the award went to author Chris Cheng, SCBWI Australia regional advisor.

Always true to his gregarious and friendly nature, Chris is one busy and very effective bee when it comes to making connections, spreading the word on good books and projects, volunteering to read to children in schools, and more. And he seems to do it all—it takes a special kind of person, really—without ever losing sight of his own writing. Congratulations, Chris! It’s great to see your hard work and passion for all things book recognized by your peers!

You can read more about the award, which was given during the SCBWI LA Summer Conference (at the Golden Kite Luncheon, on Aug 2) and see some pictures of a stunned and happy Chris here and here.

Writers’ and illustrators’ childhood memories…

Friday, July 2nd, 2010

For our current issue on How Children Play Around the World, we asked several authors and illustrators to tell us about their Memories of Playtimes Past. Together, they paint a vivid picture of childhood around the world and reveal the power of imagination – something that still plays such an important role in all their lives as adults, and in the lives of kids today. Illustrator Mandana Sadat, whose own contribution is just wonderful, was struck after reading the whole article by the similarities in the different experiences of play – do read Aline’s post discussing this.

The first author up is Tanita Davis:

Growing up the youngest of three sisters (in Martinez, California) meant being left out of the older girls’ games. To placate me, I was named Mom’s “helper” and my playtimes combined chores and daydreaming. I would sit on the back porch and shuck corn from the garden, or weed the front yard – and then taking the silk from the corn, combine it with dirt and water, and make “pies” for the dog to eat (Our poor dog. She really did eat them.), or take the “milk” from the stems of the dandelions I was supposed to be eradicating from the front yard (after blowing all of the milkweed clocks and sufficiently re-seeding them throughout the lawn), and use it as glue to adhere dry weeds to the “head” of a cornhusk doll.

Because I was a quiet kid, I got away with a lot – climbing the tree next to my father’s shed, and making a tree-house of sorts on the roof, complete with its own chamber pot (Oh, I got in trouble when my mother found out about THAT) and store of slightly mildew books scavenged from a teacher’s throw-away pile. One summer I played with the hose and made carefully dried adobe “moccasins” that were no more than ten or twelve layers of clay mud I wore on the bottom of my feet as shoes. They lasted for a surprisingly long time before they cracked. As the layers dried, I would lie on my back in the yard and listen to the drone of the planes going to and from the Air Force base, and imagine they were taking people to adventures, just like I would have someday.

And Belle Yang brings the article to a flourishing close:

I was born on the subtropical island of Taiwan. The front yard was the rice paddies, alive with tadpoles like music notes on sheet music. The Sleeping Dragon Mountain, exploding with firecracker red azaleas, was my backyard. Rivulets, home to small fish and crustaceans, came rushing down the hills. My barefoot friends and I looked for tiny crabs as they crawled among the stones, dappled by sunlight and the motion of wind in the acacia.

We caught the crabs and tied white sewing thread to one of their many legs. We took them for walks on the paved paths of the schoolyard, where my parents taught high school. I was delighted with my pet that could only walk sideways.

Do read the rest of the Memories of Playtimes Past – between them, Alan Gratz, Mandana Sadat, Jorge Argueta, Neni Sta Romana Cruz, Chris Cheng, Demi and Larry Loyie, along with Tanita and Belle quoted above, will evoke a smile, or even a laugh out loud – and certainly memories of one’s own childhood… And if you’d care to share some of those with us, we’d love to hear them!

More about the Asian Festival of Children’s Content-

Wednesday, May 19th, 2010

Corinne the other day pointed us to Tarie Sabido’s blog, Asia in the Heart, as a great source of news and images from the first Asian Festival of Children’s Content, which happened earlier this month in Singapore. Authors Uma Krishnaswami, Chris Cheng and Rukhsana Khan also share their experiences of the event on their respective blogs, so I encourage you to check them out as well.

One of the many highlights of the festival was Uma and Rukhsana’s joint panel about their cross-cultural collaboration in Many Windows. Oh how I wish I could have been able to attend it!