Read only books by Australians. Don't fret, overseas writer-friends, I will return to your books in 2016. But for now, I want to support other Aussies and do my part to encourage a reading and writing culture with Australian voices. In the process of preparing to pitch my novel to Australian agents, I've also been browsing their websites. And as any reader knows, websites full of (mostly new) books are dangerous places to be. My "to read" list has grown considerably. And then there are a couple of Christmas present books that were conveniently from Aussies. It all fell into place like someone was telling me "Gabrielle, read more Australian authors!"
I teach in NSW, where the syllabus requires a certain number of texts from Australians each year. My plan, for all my teacher-friends, is to write a couple of brief notes after each novel explaining why it would or would not be good for the classroom, what year group it might be suitable for, and maybe a lesson idea or resource. Some books may have educational resources produced for them already, in which case I'll post links.
I'm still on maternity leave, only teaching a day a week casual work and semi-mentoring an extension II creative writing student, so I don't have any other books that I need to be reading for work. But if teachers would like to join in and only count the books you read for pleasure, do so! I'm not counting my scribophile critiques, only published books.
If there are other readers, writers, bloggers or teachers who would like to join me in my 2015 challenge, it'd be great to hear from you! Comment below, follow me on twitter, share your own blog. Recommend me a great Australian author.
Happy New Year! May your 2015 be a year of awesome, whatever you chose to do with it.