Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Queenie launch

The launch of Queenie: One Elephant's Story was on Sunday at the Melbourne museum. It was launched to a packed room and we even made the Channel 9 news in the evening thanks to Kelly Curtin, and we sold a small truckload of books. I'm amazed at the response it's drawn.

It's both a very local Melbourne story and a much bigger story of elephants in zoos and how we treat animals. As it includes the death of the beloved Queenie it is searingly honest for a picture book and this seems to be part of its power. Corinne didn't steer away from the truth. As a story it challenges the reader and so operates on several levels.

So it is an "act local, think global (or at least think national)" publishing tale. And it will be interesting to see if it is taken up overseas.

Reflecting on this I think with the predominance of trade publishers having been in Sydney. Sydney has had more of its stories published than Melbourne, but with the growth of the Melbourne independents this has changed. And there's Wakefield in Adelaide, FACP in Perth and UQP in Brisbane.

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