Make New Stories Beyond the Page in the July School Holidays!

Kia ora folks! We are so incredibly excited to announce that the hotly-anticipated Beyond the Page festival is returning this July!

During the school holidays, from the 9th to the 24th of July, libraries across the Wellington region are hosting over 100 awesome, FREE events for tamariki and their whānau, from puppetry, poetry, and costume design experiences through to VR experiences, nature walks, sculpting, and stop motion animation workshops!

There’s something on every day of the holidays, so join us to experience the ‘other’ side of libraries — the side that fizzes and pops, is creative, exciting, and adventurous!

Beyond the Page is a collaboration between Wellington City Libraries, Hutt City Libraries, Upper Hutt City Libraries, Kāpiti Coast District Libraries, and Masterton District Library. You can view the full event calendar and find out more about the festival and our wonderful presenters on the Beyond the Page website, or you can follow the festival on Facebook for regular updates.

Read on to find out about some of the excellent events happening in Wellington City Libraries branches:

Vivita X Beyond the Page: Graphic Novel Series

We’re partnering with Wellington innovation studio VIVITA Aotearoa to bring you the Graphic Novel Series — a group of three workshops focussed on bringing the characters and story of a graphic novel to life, from sculpture and miniatures through to cardboard costumes!

These events are suitable for tamariki aged 9-15, and registrations are required.

  • Cardboard Costumes | Miramar Library | Saturday 9 July, 10am – 12pm (Register here)
  • Serious Sculpting | Te Awe Library | Sunday 10 July, 10am – 12pm (Register here)
  • Miniature Modelling | Johnsonville Library | Sunday 17 July, 10am – 12pm (Register here)

Toro Pikopiko Tales

Have you ever wanted to become a puppeteer? Join the Toro Pikopiko Tales Roadshow to explore an interactive gallery of puppets – from traditionally carved kare-tao puppets, through to puppets inspired by Māori rock art, taniwha, and stories of the land. In this fun-filled workshop, you’ll become the puppeteer!

These events are suitable for tamariki aged 5+ with their caregivers, and registrations are required.

  • Karori Library | Tuesday 19 July, 10 – 11am (Register here)
  • Johnsonville Library | Tuesday 19 July, 2 – 3pm (Register here)
  • Ruth Gotlieb (Kilbirnie) Library | Thursday 21 July, 10 – 11am (Register here)
  • Mervyn Kemp (Tawa) Library | Friday 22 July, 10 – 11am (Register here)

Stories From Our Place with Zealandia

Listen to bilingual stories about our special Aotearoa plant life and animals, then discover more about them on a guided nature walk with a Zealandia educator! Tamariki registered for the first session can explore Zealandia with their whānau free of charge. At the Cummings Park Library session, we will instead be exploring the unique flora and fauna of the beautiful Cummings Park.

These events are suitable for tamariki of all ages with their caregivers, and registrations are required.

  • Cummings Park (Ngaio) Library | Tuesday 12 July, 2 – 3pm (Register here)
  • Zealandia Te Māra a Tāne | Tuesday 19 July, 1.30 – 3pm (Register here)
  • Zealandia Te Māra a Tāne | Tuesday 19 July, 3 – 4.30pm (Register here)

Poetry Workshop with Sara Hirsch

Have you always wanted to learn how to write poetry? Have you been writing for ages and would love the chance to get some tips and tricks? Whatever your background and experience, everyone is welcome at this inclusive workshop, from newbies to the poetry obsessed.

This event is suitable for tamariki aged 8-12 with their caregivers, and registrations are required.

  • Newtown Library | Friday 15 July, 2.30 – 4.30pm (Register here)

String Bean Puppets: Nan and Tuna

Nan and Tuna have been friends for 80 years and now it is time for one last adventure together. But before they leave they will need to find someone to care for the river. Join us for this special bilingual puppet show presented by Anna Bailey of String Bean Puppets!

This event is suitable for tamariki of all ages with their caregivers.

…and even more!

The holidays are going to be chocka with even more wonderful events, including Bricks and Giggles (LEGO® building galore!), Stop Motion Stories (fun and simple animation workshops!), Box Bonanza (what can you make armed with nothing but a cardboard box and your imagination?), Zine Machine (make your own mini-book!), and Experience VR (enter a whole new world of story through the magic of VR). Registrations are required for some of these events, so make sure you get in quick to secure your place!

Visit the links above to see all the details, or view the whole schedule on the Beyond the Page website. We can’t wait to see you there!

View Finders Photo Competition Results

Over the school holidays, we asked young people to tell us a story by taking a photo!

We took submissions in three categories: Nature, Whānau, and Objects/Books, and in two age groups, 5-12 and 13-18.

Thanks to all our competition entrants who wowed us with your creativity, eye for detail, and wonderful visual storytelling.

We are grateful for the insightful judging provided by the team at Splendid Photo. Thanks Splendid for helping us pick these winners!

Check the winners out here! Underneath each photograph is the story behind them.

5-12 – Nature: Mala

Mala - Nature Winner

“I wanted to take a photo of a natural beauty. I want people to feel like they are in the photo, surrounded by towering blades of grass.”


5-12 – Objects/Books: Lucas

Lucas - Objects-Books Winner

“This cat was at the playground. I really wanted a photo of the cats paw because it looked interesting . I spent a long time getting the paw in the photo.”


5-12 – Whānau: Mia

Mia Whānau Winner

“It was sooooo cool! I didn’t know that sunrises in New Zealand could look like this. We were lucky to go to an old fashioned Bach. It was old and had holes in the floor. But the front bedroom had glass for one wall. So me, mum and my sister all slept in there, so that we could see the sunrise from our beds. I got up so early, so that I could go down and take photos. It was so beautiful I couldn’t believe it. Like art in the sky. Only us there on the beach together.”


13-18 – Nature: Brunella 

Brunella image

“For me, beauty is also in nature, and it’s not always exposed on the outside; easy to see, touch, feel, and smell… but it also is sometimes in unexpected places where if you look carefully, you can find light and beauty somewhere dark, small and
mysterious.”


13-18 – Objects/Books: Kaitlyn

Kaitlyn - Objects

“This is my netball hoop. Dad bought a new one because the other was tipping over. I have spent a lot of time this holiday practicing shooting for the netball season ahead.”


13-18 – Whānau: Tilly

Tilly Whānau Category Winner

“The whānau photo took place when my family and I were flying a kite on the beach. People stopped to watch as my family and I laughed willing it to fly higher and higher. The moment captured the familiar essence of whānau.”


Each of our winners won their own reusable film camera, a roll of film, and a voucher to get it developed! We hope they will all enjoy exploring a classic photography medium, that might be what their parents (or grandparents!) grew up with.

Thanks to Ben & Jerry’s Wellington and Light House Cinema who kindly provided some bonus spot prizes for a few other entrants!

Keep an eye-out for the travelling View Finders photography exhibition, including all our young people’s work. Coming soon to a library near you!

View Finders Beanstack Challenge!

This April School Holidays, take part in our View Finders Photography Challenge! 

We have a holiday challenge for you on our Beanstack platform!

This Beanstack challenge will guide you down the path of learning about photography so that you can get your submissions in before the deadline of the 1st of May — and there are some cool spot prizes for people who complete book reviews and take part in activities. We’re choosing a random book reviewer or challenge completer EVERY DAY to win a spot prize, so don’t miss out!

To jump right into Beanstack, click here! 🎞

Our Beanstack challenge is full of tips and activities to help you take great portraits of people, find flora and fauna in our wonderful city, and get inspired by excellent object photography!

Beanstack challenges

Some of the digital badges you can earn on our Beanstack!


For our photo competition, we’re taking submissions in three categories: Nature, Whānau, and Objects/Books, and in two age groups, 5-12 and 13-18.

The first prize for each category is a reusable Kodak film camera, some black-and-white film roll, and free development with Splendid Photo!

The Beanstack activities lead to a link to enter your own photos.

We look forward to seeing your photos and hearing the story behind them! You may want to display your photo at your local branch library at the end of the competition.

View Finders 1st Place Category Prizes

Our 1st place category prizes! You could win your very own film camera!


Special thanks to our friends at Splendid Photo, who are helping us to judge the competition, and Ben & Jerry’s Wellington, Light House Cinema, and Unity Books, who are kindly providing us with spot prizes to give away. Ka rawe!

View Finders Photo Competition

This April School Holidays, tell us a story by taking a photo!

From the 16th of April to the 1st of May, we’re running View Findersa photo competition for tamariki and rangatahi across Wellington City. There are heaps of cool prizes to be won — and a special exhibition to take part in at the end!

We’re taking submissions in three categories: Nature, Whānau, and Objects/Books, and in two age groups, 5-12 and 13-18.

Don’t forget to check out our special View Finders Beanstack Challenge to earn spot prizes, log your reading, and do some simple activities to get your photography skills into top gear for the competition!

Submissions for View Finders are now closed! We will be announcing the winners on the 13th of May — keep an eye on this blog for updates!

Nature:

Take a picture of something that blows your mind in a local park, down at the beach, or high in the hills! See what flora and fauna you can discover in the great outdoors of Aotearoa.

While you’re out and about, you might want to check out iNaturalist NZ – Mātaki Taiao, which is an app that you can use to record what you see in the natural world! There is also an annual City Nature Challenge for Pōneke/Wellington where us locals can make a big effort to see what we can find!

Whānau:

In a literal sense, whānau means family in Te Reo Māori, and is based on shared whakapapa and descent from a common ancestor.

Whānau is also used by non-Māori to talk about their family. Sometimes, Whānau is used to describe groups of people who come together bound by a common purpose, this could also be called whānau ā kaupapa.

So, for our photo competition, you can take a picture that tells a story about your family, or you can take a broader view of whānau to tell a story about a team or group you are involved in, or even a group of friends.

Objects or Books:

Tell us a story about a physical object that is important to you. It could be a cherished toy, or your comfiest couch! Maybe the object would even be a book (we do love books at the library!) With ComicFest coming up on May 7th, you could find a creative way to photograph your favourite comic book, maybe by putting it in a funny or unexpected location!


View Finders

Get your phone, tablet, or camera at the ready!


You can enter once per category. If anyone else appears in your photo, make sure you have permission to share it with us.

We look forward to seeing your photos and hearing the story behind them! You may want to display your photo at your local branch library at the end of the competition.

Special thanks to our friends at Splendid Photo, who are helping us to judge the competition, and Ben & Jerry’s Wellington, Light House Cinema, and Unity Books, who are kindly providing us with spot prizes to give away. Ka rawe!

The Summer Reading Adventure is Finished!

Well, folks, here we are. The Summer Reading Adventure is finally over! You’ve absolutely blown us away with what you’ve achieved — congratulations to everyone who took part. Here are some of the numbers:

  • You read 16,863 books over December and January — that’s 527 books a day, or a book every 5 minutes!
  • You wrote, drew, or filmed 5,044 book reviews. Many of you loved using emojis to tell us about the books you read!
  • You completed 2,625 quests, from exploring and mapping the land to building forts, conducting science experiments to creating beautiful and original works of art.
  • You earned 3,536 prizes, including badges, books, pens, pencils and notebooks, vouchers from our wonderful friends at Ben & Jerry’s and Unity Books, and other goodies!

So many of you have picked up prizes already. From today, you can still come in to pick up prizes, but only while stocks last as we’re starting to run out of books and other goodies! Check out some of our 3,000+ prizewinners below:

Adelaide from Karori Library

Marcy from Karori Library


Harper from Khandallah Library

Kenta from Tawa Library


Mikio from Tawa Library

Senri from Tawa Library


Charlie and William from Te Awe Library


Even though the Summer Reading Adventure is officially over, that doesn’t mean that your reading journey needs to end. You can still use our Beanstack website to log your reading, get personalised book recommendations, write or draw reviews, and earn digital achievements. Awesome stuff!

Keep your eyes peeled for more announcements about the Summer Reading Adventure, including our Grand Prize Winners — your name may just be on that list! But for now, we’re going to take a quick break, wipe the sweat from our brow, and start getting ready for the next adventure. See you there!

Wellington Beaches for Summer Swimming

Let’s talk about one of the most Kiwi summer activities Wellington has to offer – going to the beach!

There’s so much to do at the beach. You can build sandcastles, go swimming and jump over waves, draw pictures in the sand and follow the footprints in the sand left by birds. You can collect shells, have a picnic, search for sea life in a rockpool, and there’s so much more!

When you’re planning your beach trip, it’s a good idea to be prepared with lots of sunscreen, buckets and boogie boards, and also some thoughts towards safety. If you’re not already familiar with the Water Safety Code, we recommend having a read so you know how best to keep yourself and your family safe. If you’re visiting a beach for the first time, Find a Beach is a great website created by Surf Life Saving New Zealand that has profiles for pretty much every beach around Aotearoa. On this site you can search up the beach you’re planning to visit, check out the forecast, find out if there will be lifeguards, and learn about any hazards to watch out for. They’ve got a good safety information page too!

There are so many beaches around Wellington for you to explore, so lets take a look at some of them:

Balaena Bay

Balaena Bay is the first of the smaller beaches along Evans Bay Parade.

There’s a carpark at one end, and changing rooms at the other. The water here is quite shallow and calm, so is good for just splashing about if you’re not yet ready for swimming.

Freyberg Beach/Oriental Bay

Freyberg Beach and Oriental Bay are so close together that they’re sharing an entry in this list.

These two beaches are right next to each other, and very close to the central city.

There are changing rooms and wheelchair access at Freyberg, as well as parking and a playground! There’s also a beach wheelchair at Freyberg pool that’s available to borrow. There are also a few cafes, ice cream stores, and food trucks around on Oriental Parade in case you’re after a post-swim snack.

If you’re worried about safety, then relax! Oriental Bay is patrolled by lifeguards over the summer.

Hataitai Beach

Hataitai Beach, like Balaena Bay, is along Evans Bay Parade. The beach here is quite small and the water is very calm but it gets deep more quickly than at Balaena Bay so if you’re not a very confident swimmer make sure to stay close to the shore. Cog Park is right next door, so if you are a confident swimmer and the tide is in there’s a small wharf you can jump off!

Cog Park has plenty of picnicking spots, and at the other end of Hataitai Beach are the changing rooms with steps that go straight down into the sea.

Island Bay

Island Bay is easy to get to on the bus – just hop on a number 1 and you’re pretty much there. If you’re keen for a swim or a walk along the beach, Island Bay is a good option for you. Just remember that it looks out on the open sea so the water will be a bit cooler than any of the beaches inside the Wellington harbour.

There are changing rooms and picnic tables at the park across the road, and also a playground!

Lyall Bay

Lyall Bay is a wonderfully long stretch of beach to walk along – and the eastern end of the beach allows off leash dogs if you have a furry friend who would like to join you!

You can use the changing rooms in the Lyall Bay Surf Life Saving Club, and they also have beach wheelchairs available to borrow. Lyall Bay is a patrolled beach over the summer so let the lifeguards keep you safe!

Princess Bay

Princess Bay is another beach along the south coast. It’s further east than Island Bay and quite a bit smaller. Princess Bay is good for a sheltered swim and if you’re interested in sea life you can explore the rockpools out along the point. If it’s a clear day you might even be able to see the South Island!

Leave your car in the carpark at the eastern end of the bay by the changing rooms.

Scorching Bay

Out along the Miramar Peninsula is Scorching Bay. It’s got golden sand, a nice grassy area, changing rooms and outdoor showers, and the Scorch-O-Rama café across the road.

Scorching Bay is a patrolled beach, so make sure you swim between the flags.

Worser Bay

Worser Bay is another beach along the Miramar Peninsula, out on the eastern side.

You’ll be well taken care of with changing rooms, a picnic area, and across the road from the beach is the famous Worser Bay swing. Be sure to check it out!


If you can’t get out to the beach but you can make it to the library, or would like to know more about the creatures you might find in a rockpool, here are some beach-themed New Zealand reads to get you inspired:

At the beach : explore & discover the New Zealand seashore / Candler, Gillian
“At the Beach is a delightful introduction to the natural history of the New Zealand seashore. The stage is set with beautiful, factually correct illustrations (including detailed cross-sections) of three familiar habitats – the sandy beach, rockpools and mudflats. Many of the plants and animals that play a part in these rich ecosystems are shown in situ, and readers are directed from there to pages dedicated to detailed coverage of: crabs; sea stars, kina and sea anemones; shellfish; seaweeds, sponges and sandhoppers; fish, jellyfish & shrimps; birds. Aimed at children 5-8 years old, but with appeal for anyone curious about New Zealand’s natural environment, At the Beach is a must for the home, bach, classroom and library. Comes with a removable, waterproof quick-reference guide to common seashore animals.” (Catalogue)

Freddy Bear and the beach / Cowley, Joy
“Freddy Bear is playing at the beach with Dad – running, playing, chasing seagulls. He falls over running, but Dad picks him up and takes him home.” (Catalogue)

The life-size guide to the New Zealand beach : featuring the odd things that get washed up on the sand / Crowe, Andrew
“Pictorial guide to identifying various items and curious objects that are commonly found on New Zealand beaches. Suggested level: primary, intermediate, secondary.” (Catalogue)

Dashing dog / Mahy, Margaret
“When a dashing dog gets into messy mischief, his family is exasperated. Then baby Betty falls off the jetty, and it’s up to the brave dashing dog to save the day.” (Catalogue)

A summery Saturday morning / Mahy, Margaret
“The children go down to the sea on a summery, Saturday morning, down the wiggly track, scattering shells and leaping logs. But first their dogs chase a cat, then they chase a boy on a rattly bike, then wild geese hiss and chase the children and the dogs and the walk is not so peacful after all. Suggested level: junior, primary.” (Catalogue)

A is for Aotearoa : a lift-the-flap New Zealand treasure hunt / Newcombe, Diane
“Our story starts with a bottle containing a secret message, washed up on a beach. The bottle begins a trail of clues, and children lift the flap to reveal the clue that takes them on an alphabet journey all over New Zealand. Included is a glossary with interesting facts about each location”–Publisher information.” (Catalogue)

Charlie Tangaroa and the creature from the sea / Roxborogh, Tania Kelly
“On a beach clean-up, thirteen-year-old Charlie and his brother, Robbie, find a ponaturi, a mermaid, washed up on a beach. An ancient grudge between the Māori gods Tane and Tangaroa has flared up because a port being built in the bay is polluting the ocean and creatures are fleeing the sea. This has reignited anger between the gods, which breaks out in storms, earthquakes and huge seas. The ponaturi believes Charlie is the only one who can stop the destruction. So begins Charlie’s journey to find a way to reunite the gods and discover why he is the one for the task”–Publisher information.” (Catalogue)

Also available as an eBook

Splish, splash, safety : a book about water safety.
“Join The Wiggles as they practise water safety!” (Catalogue)
Summer days : stories and poems celebrating the Kiwi summer.
“A beautiful collection of children’s stories and poems that celebrates the golden days of summer, by some of New Zealand’s finest writers and illustrators. The great Kiwi summer conjures images of the beach, swimming, boating, fishing, families, friends adventures… This collection of seven stories and ten poems capture that quintessential summer feeling, and is perfect summertime reading to share with children. Dive in to find all sorts of treasures by well-known New Zealand writers and illustrators, including Margaret Mahy, Joy Cowley, Gavin Bishop, Pamela Allen, Gwenda Turner, Fiona Farrell, Elena de Roo, Melanie Drewery, Sandra Morris, Sue Wootton, Brian Turner, Jenny Cooper, Vasanti Unka and David Elliot. Target age 3-7 years”–Publisher information.” (Catalogue)

Kids Audiobooks for the Summer Holidays

Since the summer holidays are fast approaching, and our Summer Reading Adventure has already launched, now is the perfect time to highlight our children’s audiobook collection.

Audiobooks are a great distraction for long car trips, and are also a good way for more reluctant readers to keep up their reading over the summer. And we have so many audiobooks for you to choose from, and so many ways to access them as well!

via GIPHY

Audiobooks on CD

If you prefer to use a CD player to listen to your audiobooks, then head on down to one of our branches and keep an eye out for the Children’s Audiobook section where you can browse the collection of available books-on-CD. You can also search and reserve audiobooks through our catalogue so the titles you’re after are ready and waiting for your next library visit – and check out our Quick Searches page! Here you can get a quick list of hundreds of kids audiobooks to scroll through.

If you’re into eAudiobooks, we have two different services you can use to listen. Both are free to use – you can use them in your browser or just download the app onto your phone, tablet, computer, whatever device you have, and sign in with your library card barcode number and your 4-digit pin.

Our eAudiobooks show up on our catalogue when you’re searching, just like our regular audiobooks. All you have to do is check which kind of eAudiobook it is, Borrowbox or Overdrive!

Screenshot of the catalogue search record for Cart and Cwidder by Diana Wynne Jones. Underneath the author's name the call number is listed as Children eAudiobook Overdrive.

The description in the catalogue search results will tell you what kind of book it is, and where to get it! This one is an Overdrive eAudiobook.


Borrowbox

Borrowbox has several thousand different titles, and a big focus on eAudiobooks. They’re an Australian company so are a bit more likely to have titles from closer to home.

With Borrowbox you can search for specific titles, or filter by age and explore featured lists such as Chart Toppers or new books, and you can have 25 eAudiobooks and 25 eBooks out at a time!


Libby by Overdrive

Overdrive has got two apps you can use, Libby and Overdrive, but both have exactly the same books on them and you can use both or either, whichever you like best!

There are a lot of curated booklists available on Libby and Overdrive, such as the Stay At Home Audiobook Selection from earlier this year, Alternative Fairy Tales and Folklore, and even a dog themed booklist! Probably the most exciting of these lists though is the Unlimited Loans: Kids Audiobooks collection. With this list of 100 eAudiobooks you don’t have to wait for the person before you to return them to the library – they’re always available!

You can have 20 titles – eAudiobooks and eBooks – out a time through Libby and Overdrive.


So now you have all these different options for accessing audiobooks, but when are you going to listen to them, and what kind of book do you want? Do you want a nice long chapter book with an adventure in it to listen to on the long car trip to your grandparent’s house? Or maybe you’d like a Christmas story to listen to as you decorate your tree? Or some shorter stories to help lull you off to sleep?

In case you’re having a hard time deciding what to listen to, here are a few ideas to get you started:

The Quentin Blake collection / Blake, Quentin
“A collection of gorgeous stories from Quentin Blake, one of the best-known and most highly regarded illustrators of our time, internationally celebrated for his partnership with Roald Dahl.” (Catalogue)

Also available as an eAudiobook

Christmas stories / Blyton, Enid
“In this collection there is mystery and magic, laughter and mischief, the joy of shared times and plenty of delicious food, many of the ingredients that have been delighting Enid Blyton’s fans for more than seventy years.” (Catalogue)

Also available as an eAudiobook

Holiday stories / Blyton, Enid
“A wonderful selection of stories to read and share. From sandcastles at the beach to enchanted ice-creams, step into the summer with these delightful characters. Adventure, fun and magic can all be found on holiday with Enid Blyton, who has been delighting readers for more than seventy years.” (Catalogue)

Also available as an eAudiobook

Artemis Fowl / Colfer, Eoin
“When a twelve-year-old evil genius tries to restore his family fortune by capturing a fairy and demanding a ransom in gold, the fairies fight back with magic, technology, and a particularly nasty troll.” (Catalogue)

Also available as an eAudiobook

Hairy Maclary story collection / Dodd, Lynley
“Collection of amusing stories about the adventures of the dog Hairy Maclary and his friends who just want to have fun, but trouble is never far away! Suggested level: junior, primary.” (Catalogue)

The Julia Donaldson collection / Donaldson, Julia
“Follow the Swallow: When Apollo the swallow flies to Africa, Chack the blackbird wants to send him a message. But Africa is far away. Can a jumpy dolphin, a grumpy camel, a greedy crocodile or a playful monkey help to deliver the message? […]” (Catalogue)

Also available as an eAudiobook
Good night stories for rebel girls : [100 tales of extraordinary women] / Favilli, Elena
“To the rebel girls of the world: dream bigger, aim higher, fight harder, and, when in doubt, remember you are right”–Introduction. “Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls reinvents fairy tales, inspiring girls with the stories of 100 heroic women […]” (Catalogue)

Also available as an eAudiobook

The pirates’ mixed-up voyage / Mahy, Margaret
“Captain Lionel Wafer and his fellow-pirates, Toad, Brace-and-Bit and Winkle, are no ordinary ruffians. Clinging to the belief that life should be simple, free and unplanned they set off in a converted teashop of a ship[…] to sail backwards and forwards over the bounding blue […]” (Adapted from Catalogue)

Also available as an eAudiobook

The lightning thief / Riordan, Rick
“Twelve-year-old Percy Jackson learns he is a demigod, the son of a mortal woman and Poseidon, god of the sea. His mother sends him to a summer camp for demigods where he and his new friends set out on a quest to prevent a war between the gods. Suggested level: intermediate, junior secondary.” (Catalogue)

Also available as an eAudiobook

Nevermoor : the trials of Morrigan Crow / Townsend, Jessica
“A cursed child destined to die on her eleventh birthday is rescued and whisked away to a secret realm called Nevermoor and given the chance to compete for a place in a prestigious organization called the Wundrous Society.” (Catalogue)

Also available as an eAudiobook

Absolutely Positively Wellington Short Story Competition

This summer, young scribes and aspiring writers around the city are invited to enter the The Mayor and Deputy Mayors Absolutely Positively Wellington Short Story Competition!

The theme for this year is ‘The City of Wind.’ Mayor Andy Foster adds that “Wellington is famous for its iconic wind – and whether you love it or hate it – it shapes our lives.”

You can write your story in Te Reo Māori or English and/or a combination.

Deputy Mayor Sarah Free says: “We are looking for fact or fiction stories that explore the love hate relationship people have with this force of nature. Serious or fun, futuristic, or based on a historical chapter in Wellington’s history, now is the moment to unsheathe your pen, sharpen your pencil and fire up your word processor.”

There are some exciting prizes up for grabs, including a $200 book voucher, a lunch with the Mayor and Deputy Mayor and a creative development session with the competition judge, and award-winning writer Lauren Keenan.

Categories:

  • Best Story: 9-12 year old, up to 1500 words
  • Best Story 13-18 year olds, up to 3000 words
  • Best Title of a Story
  • Best Premise of a Story
  • Most Imaginative Story

The competition closes at 11:59pm on 25 February 2022. We look forward to reading all your stories!

Find more details and the online entry form here.

Books to check out!

Unleash your creative monster : a children’s guide to writing / Jones, Andy
“A side-splitting and informative guide to creative writing by author/illustrator comedic duo Andy and Olaf, jam-packed with lashings of monster-inspired fun. Unleash your creative monster and write stories to inspire, amaze and awe your friends. With top tips on getting your story started, learn essential skills for storytellers in this brilliant guide to writing. Give your descriptions claws, add a little bite to your writing and feed your monster inspiration with over 50 writing prompts and exercises”–Publisher’s description.” (Catalogue)

How to be a young #writer / Edge, Christopher
“This is an authoritative book from the word experts at Oxford to get budding writers crafting brilliant stories. It will help you think about how to develop an idea into a gripping and powerful story, with examples and tips from the best known authors to show you how it’s done. For children aged 11 and over, it covers all the key elements of plot, characterization, building a believable world, thinking about tone and style, weaving description into stories, through to endings and editing your work. Practical tips will get any struggling writer to beat the fear of the blank page and inspirational advice will help young authors to achieve their creative writing goals. It includes information on sharing stories and how to get people reading your work.” (Catalogue)

Kid authors : true tales of childhood from famous writers / Stabler, David
“Presents stories featuring authors when they were children, including Roald Dahl, J.K. Rowling, and Zora Neale Hurston.” (Catalogue)

Before they were authors : famous writers as kids / Haidle, Elizabeth
“This exciting debut in graphic novel format tells the childhood stories of literary legends including Maya Angelou, Roald Dahl, and Sandra Cisneros. Perfect for fans of Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls and Brazen: Rebel Ladies Who Rocked the World.” (Catalogue)

Summer Reading Tips: The Community Reading Goal

Kia ora! The Summer Reading Adventure is now in full swing, and hundreds of you have already started logging your reading, writing or drawing book reviews, and completing quests in the name of honour and glory. Hurrah!

You might have noticed that on the Summer Reading Adventure website, if you scroll down just a little bit, you’ll see a live counter that looks a little like this:

A live ticker on the Summer Reading Adventure website, with a progress bar that is 20% full and text saying "It's dangerous to go alone! Let's work together to reach this community reading goal."

Did you catch the reference to The Legend of Zelda games? There are classic gaming references hidden everywhere on the Summer Reading Adventure website — can you find them all?

This counter tells us how many books the kids of Wellington have read so far on their Summer Reading Adventures. We have set a goal for us to read 5,000 books together before the 31st of January — and yes, you read that correctly, we’ve already read over 1,000 books! After just one week! Ka pai tō mahi, that is amazing!

What happens when we reach our Community Reading Goal? Well, the text on the left will change, for one thing. So that’s cute. But as for other effects, you’ll just have to wait and see!

The Summer Reading Adventure starts today — 1 December!

Read books, explore the city, win prizes!

The Summer Reading Adventure runs from 1 December 2021 – 31 January 2022 for children aged 5-13. Read books; write, draw or film reviews; and complete quests to earn all kinds of awesome goodies — and you’ll still be home in time for tea!

Summer Reading Adventure website link - 1 December to 31 January

Pick up the Adventurer’s Guide from your local library and visit our Summer Reading Adventure website to register and start logging your reading and adventures today.

Read on to find out more!

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