Bellingen and bookplates

June 10th, 2014

After five days of swanning around the little town of Bellingen in sandals and shirt sleeves, I’ve come home to VERY COLD nights. I lit the wood heater as soon as I walked in the door, and Harry immediately started purring. Since then he has barely moved, except to roll over so that he can toast the other side. πŸ™‚

Bellingen is a gorgeous little old-fashioned looking town in northern NSW, about 30 minutes inland from Coff’s Harbour.

The morning view from my motel room

The nights were coldish, but the days were gorgeous. And the festival was good. I spent the first day at Tyalla Primary School in Coff’s Harbour, talking to a large bunch of kids, then doing writing workshops with smaller groups. The second day I did one talk and one workshop, in Bellingen.

Me and the kids from St Marys, who came to one of the workshops

The third day I spoke on a panel about writing for children, along with author Nadia Wheatley – who I met for the first time. And I also ran a workshop for adults who wanted to write for children. That was entertaining – we were talking about research, so I sent everyone outside to lurk in the bushes and pretend they were spying on someone. They really got into it, ducking down behind fences on their hands and knees, and hiding behind trees so they wouldn’t be seen. Afterwards, we came back and talked about it, and then wrote a spying scene. No pictures of the spies, unfortunately!

On Sunday I didn’t have any more workshops, so went to listen to some people talking about crime writing. Bought a couple of books, then flew home. And what should be waiting for me there, than the new Hidden series bookplates! Hooray! The proper ones this time, in very cute boxes.

A box of bookplates

So if you’d like a bookplate to go inside the front cover of your copy of Ice Breaker (or Sunker’s Deep, when it comes out), leave a comment below and I’ll email you to get your postal address etc.

Here’s what the bookplates look like.

The new bookplates for the Hidden series

And yes, that’s Mister Smoke and Missus Slink you can see down the bottom, crawling over the machinery. πŸ™‚

I haven’t forgotten about the competition – just haven’t had a chance to organise it yet. I’ll try and get it done this weekend. Keep your eyes open for a new post.

32 thoughts on “Bellingen and bookplates

  1. Yvonne says:

    Hi Lian, My three would love a bookplate each if you can bear to part with three to one book loving house. (Including a selection of your books, of course!)

  2. Sherry mackay says:

    Hi lian
    I would love a bookplate! Thanks so much

  3. Io says:

    And I bet you know what I’m going to ask for- a bookplate please, madam, if you wouldn’t mind. They look much whiter and cleaner and prettier than the yellow (kind of) ones.

    I hope that you and Harry don’t freeze! We still need both of you to write and entertain us in the future! AND as well as we all still love you and adore you so please don’t freeze! But I hope it gets warmer soon!

    And the workshops sound like a lot of fun! Hope one of those adults do become an author for children! And what was the spying scene about?

    All luck to your writing!


    P.S. I can’t wait for Sunker’s Deep to be set out into the wild! (bookshops, libraries, etc.)

    P.P.S. Bookplate phot:

    1. Lian says:

      I agree that they are much nicer, Io. You see why I insisted on getting them changed. I will put two in the post – one for you and one for Gabi.

      It is MUCH warmer today. I didn’t even light the fire this morning, and Harry is outside lounging in a tree in the front garden, looking as beautiful as he can, in case someone with a camera walks past. He has aspirations to be a super model. πŸ™‚

      The spying scene was about research. I was talking to them about how you have to go out and DO things, before you write about them (if possible!), so that you know what it feels like to creep around, and where the nervousness is in your body, and what you can see and hear etc. They came up with some interesting stuff afterwards.

      And I like the thought of Sunker being let loose in the wild. A little submersible, creeping through forests of seaweed … πŸ™‚

      1. Io says:

        Thanks, Lian! I never actually thought of Harry being a supermodel but now that I think of it, if he can lose some of his chubbiness, (cats are VERY stubborn when it comes to taking walks) and learn to do THE LOOK and THE WALK, then I think he could make it up to the top!

        That research is interesting and…odd. Which makes it very effective! They would never forget that moment and I’m quite sure it helped them(they did write a great scene, didn’t they?). I would love to try that sometime!


        P.S. For Harry: I think it would be better to go to the city wearing a cut neon hat, skirt, etc. to stand out! But, you know, lounging in the garden, looking beautiful, would attract scouts as well! Oh, and do a tiny pout like you’re bored! It’s what models do these days, don’t they?

  4. Evie says:

    Hi Lian, I love the new bookplate and would love to get one! πŸ™‚


  5. Eboni says:

    Hi Lian,

    Could I please get three of the bookplates. Love the other ones and would love some of these ones!

    Thank You!!!!


  6. Jo says:

    Seriously cute, Lian. Would love a set for my Hidden books.

    Thank you,

  7. Andrew Smee says:

    Hello Lian,

    my class 5/6S are loving Ice Breaker as our class novel we would love a book plate we could have for our class or Library. Would you mind personalising it by writing a short message to Class 5/6S Kangaroo Valley Public School on it.
    Much appreciated
    Andrew Smee
    Class 5/6S Teacher

  8. Anna says:

    Okay so I know this isn’t about book plates but…
    Lian, if you see this PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE e-mail me!!!!!! I am a young writer and I need advice :O

    Thanks for readin πŸ˜‰ πŸ™‚ πŸ˜€

    1. Lian says:

      Anna, I emailed you a couple of days ago when you left the last message. Didn’t you get it????

  9. Hello Lian,
    My son Tristan, age ten, has just introduced me to his new favorite book “Museum of Theives”, I am enjoying it too and wanted to learn more about you, which led me to your lovely site. I would love having a signed book plate for Tristan, as well as one for his fourth grade teacher Miss Vine.
    Thank you very much!

  10. Jo McDougall says:

    Dear Lian,
    Would it be awfully greedy of me to ask for eight (yes, 8) bookplates for Ice Breaker? I am a library teacher and want to give out Ice Breaker as book prizes at the end of the year.
    Would each plate be able to say ‘Congratulations’?

  11. Amber-Kate says:

    Wow Bellingen looks amazing, what an great experience!

    1. Lian says:

      It was a really cute little town with gorgeous scenery. Hope I can go back there one day!

  12. Joe thomas says:

    Lian I have read your book ice breaker and loved it. Do you mind signing me 3 book plates for each of the hidden series and sending them to me?
    Thanks, Joe

  13. Fatima says:

    Hi Lian! Big Fan of your book Ice Breaker. I would love 2 signed book plates.

    Much Love, Fatima

  14. Susannah says:

    Hi Lian,

    I happened upon this post while googling for ‘signed books’ of yours. I realise I am about a year too late! My soon to be 11 year old is a huge fan. For her birthday on Sunday she has requested hard covered copies of her most ‘favourite books’ The Keepers so she can ‘keep them forever’. Luckily managed to track some down. (She has some very well worn paperbacks that she has read and reread and recommended to everyone, she also dressed up as Goldie Roth for the school book week parade!).

    She is also enjoying The Hidden series and in her words ‘is counting down the days’ until Fletcher’s Song is released.

    Thank you for inspiring her to read and write! If there is any chance there are any bookplates left or some way of getting a message to her that would be fabulous!

    Susannah πŸ™‚

  15. daniel moore says:

    Hi Lian I was wondering if you could send me two bookplates my niece is about to turn 16 and loves to read so I thought that she would love one of these so if you could I would appreciate it very much

    Daniel moore

  16. Amanda Norgaard says:

    Hi Lian

    I live in Hobart, Tasmania with my family. My son Thomas is devouring your Keepers Trilogy at the moment (Just about to start “Path of Beasts.” To see him fall in love with books and reading is just a thrill; especially since it has required such an effort. My son has severe dyslexia. Thank you for being part of his journey! I was wondering if you have plans for book signings any time soon or perhaps a book store visit scheduled where I might be able to bring Thomas to meet you and get his books signed? I know he would think that was “totally cool!” Cheers! Regards Amanda

  17. Sharona says:

    Dear Lian,

    My 9-year-old son discovered Icebreaker in a local library in April; within a week and a half he’d gone through it 5 times. He made a beautiful model of the ship for a third-grade book report and wrote a lovely essay to accompany it, and continues to encourage his friends to read it.

    He’d never really gone for fiction before, though he’s a very advanced non-fiction reader, and had never to my knowledge reread anything until this one. (We actually suspect he picked up Icebreaker because he thought it was about Antarctic exploration.) Thank you for broadening his horizons!

    Since then he’s read the entire Keepers series, each book at least twice, and he’s in agonies waiting for Sunker’s Deep to be available in the US this summer! He begged us to get on the pre-order list, and just to make sure he’s got all his bases covered, has also reserved it at the library.

    I would love to surprise him with one of your bookplates. His name is Shlomo.

    Thank you!

    1. Lian says:

      Oh my, Sharon, you do know how to make an author happy, don’t you! πŸ™‚ What a great message to start the morning with. I’m so very very glad that Shlomo loved Icebreaker so much – it’s a book that’s very close to my heart. I’d be more than happy to send him a bookplate – maybe three, so he’s got one for each book when they eventually come out?

  18. Rebecca Baughman says:

    Hi Ms. Tanner,

    First, allow me to say that I just saw the picture of the beach near your home and I’m very envious.
    I’m a middle school librarian and Battle of the Books coach. Last year my teams made it into the top 10 we had a party to celebrate and I took them paddleboarding on Lake Anna. This year they WON! I’m trying to top last year’s celebration and contacting authors of this year’s BOB books to see if you can help. Please email me and I’ll give you the details. My bratlings and I love ICEBREAKER.

    Hope to hear from you soon.

  19. Rebecca Baughman says:

    Thanks for making our Battle of the Books party a huge success! The students cheered as handed them personalized bookplates. Your kindness is so appreciated.

    Rebecca Baughman

  20. Nathaniel says:

    Ms. Tanner,
    Thank you for the personalized bookplate. I really enjoyed your book and this was a nice surprise at our Battle of the book party.
    Thank you so much!
    Nathaniel Dwyer

    1. Lian says:

      Hi Nathaniel, it was my pleasure. I’m glad you liked the surprise. Congratulations on your class winning the Battle of the Books, and I hope you enjoy ‘Sunker’s Deep’ as much as ‘Icebreaker.’

  21. Paula says:

    Hi Lian,
    My student would love a bookplate. She has chosen you for a Reading Fair Project! The character she has chosen to dress up as in the Nothing Girl.

    1. Lian says:

      Hello Paula, I’ve emailed you twice, once in April and once a few days ago, but am not getting a reply. I wonder if my email has gone to your spam folder? If you see this, can you email me at lian (at) liantanner dot com please.

  22. Emily N says:

    Hi Lian I’m just wondering would I be able to have one of each book plate? My friends and I love your books and would greatly appreciate it

  23. Shakira Elmer says:

    Hi Lian,
    If they’re still available, I would absolutely love two book plates, one from the Keepers and one from the Hidden series. Could they please have β€˜For Shakira’ on them as well as your lovely signature.

    Many thanks, Shakira

  24. Aaron Cooper says:

    Hi, my name is Aaron I am in third grade. I have a school project where I have to research an author and I choose you. I liked how you continued Icebreaker in Sunker’s Deep. Can you please seed me 3 bookplates? Thank you!

  25. Larissa says:

    I would like a bookplate for Icebreaker please! Thank you for doing this πŸ™‚


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