The Importance of Book Launches
After attending the launch of Sue Lawson’s ‘Pan’s Whisper’ last Friday night, I began thinking about Book Launches – and how important they are. So on my walk yesterday morning, I was reflecting back to the launch of ‘Queenie: One Elephant’s Story’ in 2006 and how exciting it was at the Melbourne Museum. There were hundreds there, including a Channel 9 camera crew, so the launch and some moving image of Queenie walking in 1944 were screened that evening on the news. (I was soooo nervous.)
My next picture book, ‘The Dog on the Tuckerbox’ was launched at the Gundagai Library in country New South Wales. At the time I felt a little lonely without my friends and family about me, but Black Dog Books had asked the Gundagai Librarian to organise it, and she did, with love and devotion. In the middle of my launch speech I looked about at the faces of the children (who had been bussed in from all the local schools) and I thought ‘yes, this is the right place to launch such a book. It is their legend, their story and now their book.’
I was very lucky to be at the Bologna Book Fair in Italy when ‘Flame Stands Waiting’ was released, but somehow it all seemed a bit too late to launch the book when I returned to Melbourne, so Flame never did have an official launch and I believe, all books should have a ‘send off.’
When I started typing this blog post, I was waiting to hear from the Melbourne Zoo regarding a re-launch for ‘Queenie: One Elephant’s Story’ the paperback edition, which is being released in January and while I’ve been tapping away, an email has dropped in, confirming that the launch of ‘Queenie: One Elephant’s Story’ will take place at the Melbourne Zoo on Sunday, 22nd January, 2012. More details to follow.
Authors and illustrators put so much love, time, tears and parts of ourselves into our books and often think of them as our ‘babies’, so to me, having a book launch is a celebration, a time to rejoice with family, friends and lovers of books and perhaps even justifies a little, why we haven’t seen those friends and what we’ve been doing with ourselves while we’ve been locked away with our words.