Corinne Fenton is a writer with a passion for picture books that warm the heart. It’s interesting that — to date — each of her picture books have featured an animal hero…
‘I can’t explain it,’ says Corinne. ‘It isn’t something that I consciously set out to do, yet… there it is!’
For those who know Corinne, her affinity with animal characters is no random choice. Corinne has rescued so many strays over the years that she now never leaves the house without a pet lead.
‘I can’t tell you how many times I’ve rescued a stranded animal,’ says Corinne. ‘It’s become something of a joke with my friends.’
Corinne’s classic picture book, Queenie: One Elephant’s Story, illustrated by Peter Gouldthorpe, was an Honour Book in the 2007 CBCA Book of the Year Awards and was launched with great aplomb by Australian polymath, Barry Jones. Since then she has gone on to bring many memorable characters to young readers, such as The Dog on the Tuckerbox, Bob the Railway Dog, and Little Dog and the Christmas Wish.
When Corinne is not wearing her author hat, she has spent time as the Assistant Regional Advisor for the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators in Australia and as a judge for the Dorothea Mackellar poetry competition. But it’s writing that is her passion.
‘I can spend weeks — even months — getting just the right word,’ says Corinne. ‘I know I drive my editors mad. I love research, and it’s been suggested more than once that I could probably be a private detective if I wanted a change of career. While I love the writing and research, in the end it is the feedback from my young readers that makes it all worthwhile.’