from Sandy Fussell

Dear Virginia2010-00-White-Crane,

Thank you so much for taking an interest in my books and for remembering my ms from all those years ago. It's always inspiring to receive feedback like that. And I am always thrilled whenever I see my name mentioned in your newsletter. I regard myself as one of your 'graduates'.

I was unpublished when I came to you. In fact that was one of my earliest steps in becoming a writer. I always believed that part of the learning process was a wise investment of money in appraisals, subscriptions and conferences and time in critiquing and workshopping.

I learned a great deal from your and Jen's comments and you might recall I was fortunate enough that you both appraised The Last Dodo - so I received not only extra advice and feedback but two different points of view - which was to prove a valuable experience for the years ahead. After The Last Dodo I wrote White Crane which Walker picked up and from then on they have to date taken everything I have shown them. So far I am very lucky.

The Last Dodo is a story I have rewritten many times since we worked on it together - searching for just the right spin - I call it the book of my heart. I think I may have found my way but some extent although am still grappling with the two points of view - the girl and the Dodo.

I am also always grateful for the encouragement you gave me. You helped convince me I was a writer back in the days when the dream seemed so impossible. Love Sandy2010-00-Polar-Boy

Sandy Fussell, children's author

Sandy's blog

* Samurai Kids 3: Shaolin Tiger CBCA Notable Book 2010
* Polar Boy Shortlisted CBCA 2009 Younger Readers
* Coming soon: Samurai Kids 5: Fire Lizard (Walker Books Australia Sept 2010)

Walker Books Australia, Walker Books UK, Candlewick Press US