Have just returned from a four day visit to Melbourne promoting One Step at a Time with Sally Heinrich and Anna Solding. Lynette Washington travelled with us to promote Breaking Beauty, another book published by Anna at MidnightSun Publishing.
On Tuesday night we went to “The Espy” at St Kilda and were part of the audience, in the Gershwin Room, for the recording of RocKwiz, their 50’s night. Absolutely brilliant, especially seeing Brian Nankervis and Julia Zemiro in action. Special guest artists were Joe Camilleri, Vika and Linda Bull, Katie Noonan and Col Joy. What a night of madness as they had to go over and over again whenever a mistake was made…so we heard some songs 3 or 4 times!
Our first gig together as author and illustrator was at St Lawrence Catholic primary School at Derrimut. One hour and $80 later in a taxi we got there with a minute to spare.
I ran some writing sessions while Sally ran drawing sessions. Kids were brilliant. Gorgeous happy shiny faces from 30 nationalities.
Sally had an evening session at Camberwell Girls Grammar which involved an interview session with Peter the English teacher and an audience of parents and teachers. It went really well and Sally sold more of her beautiful prints.
On Thursday afternoon we both went to “The Venny” for another launch of One Step at a Time by the Melbourne based SafeGround group. “The Venny“, at J J Holland Park, Kensington, is a drop in centre for kids and parents from the nearby housing estates.
We were greeted with an avalanche of elephant biscuits made by the girls’ group and some delicious Somalian chai. Although numbers were down we had a great time talking to the kids who came from all four corners of the world.
Unfortunately the Abbott government has stopped all funding to The Venny. It has been government funded since Gough Whitlam’s time and is a vital service to the kids and their families in the area. It provides their “back yard” as you will see from the photos. As well as an exciting indoor space the outside area includes a vegie garden, chook run, trampoline and general play and building equipment that you would have an a backyard for kids. Some nights they get as many as 50 kids and adults there. Fruit and cordial is offered after school and it is a safe place for the kids to meet and play and a vital place for parents to meet and network. Shame on the Abbott government!