Why invite me?
You have your own stories to tell and you need someone to help you work out how
You want to inspire your students
Your students have read or studied my work
You want your students to enjoy a unique creative experience
You want to enhance your student's knowledge of the curriculum subject matter.
You want your students to explore new ways to write.
You want to inspire your students to tell their stories.
Chase the Rainbow
After reading Reena's Rainbow, students will talk about why Reena wants to be part of the rainbow. Students will brainstorm ways to include others in their play activities. They will talk about the colours of the rainbow, and draw a picture using these colours.
After reading Reena's Rainbow and viewing the Auslan version, students will discuss deafness, homelessness, friendship and resilience. They will then create their own acrostic rainbow poems
More Than One Way to Tell a Story
Cupcakes for Sleeping Beauty is a play that introduces students to a fun take on a familiar story. It invites discussion about language, different text formats and making writing fun. The workshop could involve the class performing the play.
A Duel of Words
Using A Duel of Words, students will be encouraged to think about the power of words, the places people live and how this affects their lifestyle, values and identity.
Students will be introduced to debating, and the poetic style used by Banjo Paterson and Henry Lawson to argue their points of view in the Bulletin Newspaper in the 1890s.
Your World, My World
Hope for Hanna will introduce students to the life and challenges of a girl growing up in a third world country.
Students will work in groups to respond to issues and challenges faced by children within their own country and around the world. They will discuss resilience, resourcefulness and empathy.
Revolving Around the Sun
Revolving Around the Sun is a play about the Solar System that can be performed by the students, helping them identify the planets of the solar system and their journey around the sun.
Heroes and Villains
What makes a hero and what makes a villain? Where does the inspiration for characters come from and how do you make them authentic. Learn how to pit your hero and villain against each other to create a compelling story. (K9 Heroes)
A workshop inspired by K9 Heroes, four stories inspired by dogs who have saved people's lives. What is the criteria for heroism? What are heroism stereotypes? Can anyone be a hero? Do heroes have flaws?
As well as discussing answers to these questions, students will be introduced to narrative non-fiction and its ability to combine fact and fiction.
Why We Should Care About the Past
How do stories help us learn about the past? Why does the past matter? Beyond Belief was inspired by the true story of Muslims at a Paris Mosque who saved Jewish Children during WW2. This workshop looks at diversity and acceptance and how our perceptions and attitudes can be changed by our experiences. It examines the Holocaust and why stories of hope are so important to us.
Your Story Matters
Learn how to craft stories based on your own personal experiences and identity. Beyond Belief and the Eddy Popcorn books feature boys of the same age from very different worlds yet they have a lot in common. Learn how our experiences and our identity shape the stories we tell and how authors use literary devices to add emphasis and layers of meaning.
It’s All A Big Laugh
Learn how to incorporate personal experiences and humour to add tension to a series story or add depth to a funny one. What makes a funny story and does it need a story arc and believable characters. Learn about devices that writers use to create humour in stories.
World Building and Research
Dee spent a month in Paris researching Beyond Belief. She shares her research techniques and how she created the world of Paris 1942. She also discusses the importance of verifying your sources and how the internet is full of fake facts.
Creating Compelling Characters
Eleven year-old Ruben (Beyond Belief) who fears for his life in war ravaged Paris in 1942 is very different from Eddy Popcorn who’s the same age but whose biggest problem is that he’s grounded for the holidays for not doing his homework. Yet these characters both compel readers to keep turning the pages. Dee’s session will include getting to know your characters so well that they earn their place at your dinner table. She’ll cover developing profiles and key traits that will make your characters vulnerable, real, flawed and fantastic; staying with readers long after they’ve finished your book.
Putting Characters into Conflict
Get to know your characters and how to create tension and excitement in your story by putting them into conflict.
What Happens Next
Brainstorm your story to identify your big idea then learn how to create a compelling, dynamic plot arc for your characters. This workshop includes creating a strong beginning, raising the stakes and bringing your story to a resolution that’s satisfying for the reader.
To book me or find out more
I have presented at many schools and writer's festivals throughout Australia and overseas, including an Author-in-Residence, progressive workshops with children, and helping students to create and edit an anthology. I live in country Victoria, Australia and am happy to travel anywhere at home or abroad.
I would love to visit your school. Email me on
FEES & COSTS: ASA rates plus travel and accommodation costs to be mutually agreed in advance.
Ford Street Literary Festival
Reena's Rainbow picture book session with AUSLAN interpreter
Sharjah International Book Fair
Primary & Secondary Schools