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Active Retirees : Active Retirees April-May 2012
Active RetireesTM | 55 GUEST SPEAKER PROFILE I never thought of ever using poetry or writing as a career. I became a personal assistant, where I practised another form of writing: shorthand. When my children were young I would read to them constantly, revelling in some beautiful picture books and wondering how others ever got published. I was planning on returning to the workforce when I fell upon an ad in a local newspaper for a creative writing workshop with Hazel Edwards, author of the series There's a Hippopotamus on Our Roof Eating Cake. After that day, I enrolled in a Diploma of Arts in Professional Writing and Editing at Box Hill TAFE. The course was a juggling act for me (I wrote assignments and washed floors often at 3am) but bytheendofitIhadtwo books published, which was very exciting. Picture books have always been in my heart. For me, making sure that every word in a picture book has the absolute right to be there and that the text is the best it can be is what it's all about. I came across Queenie quite by accident. I was writing a picture book about sparrows when someone suggested I might find more information on the zoo website. I ended up away from the birds and among the elephants, and it was there I found a page on Queenie. I read about her life in captivity, being ridden around the zoo day in, day out. I read about her being put down, after years of service and being blamed for the death of her handler. I cried and cried, then cried some more, and knew at that moment I would write her story. She deserves to be remembered forever. I’ve spoken to Probus clubs throughout Victoria over the past five years, and many members have remembered riding Queenie at the zoo. I am constantly researching and writing, and usually carry a draft so I can work on it whenever I get the chance. I have several picture books coming out over the next couple of years, some historical and others for the very young. •• Corinne Fenton Corinne is available to talk to Probus clubs. For her details, or details of other speakers to entertain and inform your members, contact PSP. W: www.probussouthpacific.org E: email@example.com T: 1800 630 488 (toll free) or (02) 9806 0100 Corinne’s passion for writing began when she used to sit on her parents’ laps while they read to her. She is author of Queenie: One Elephant’s Story, The Dog on the Tuckerbox and Flame Stands Waiting. By Ali Klaver
Active Retirees Feb-March 2012
Active Retirees June-July 2012