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Open Right

Cori Brooke

Author, Inspirational Speaker

Cori Brooke is a Canadian-Australian Children’s Book Council of Australia shortlisted children’s picture book author (All I Want for Christmas is Rain), public servant and Mom. Cori loves to share her books, book-related artifacts and books she loves with kids and adults. She loves talking about her writing process, and the process of writing generally, in a fun, accessible and kid-friendly way. Having just learned to juggle (literally, but also a metaphor for her life) Cori might incorporate that into her visits soon!

Where were you born?

I was born in New Westminster B.C. Canada in 1979. I just sneak into Gen X.

What other jobs have you had?

My first job was working in my Dad’s antique store in Vancouver, Canada. It was called Memory Lane Antiques and Vintage Lighting and my memories of the time I spent there are some of my fondest. In Australia I have done a variety of jobs! I have… worked as a receptionist at an accounting firm in Alice Springs, worked in and managed camera stores developing film and photos (also in Alice Springs and before film became extinct and when 1 hour photos were a thing), sold CDs and DVDs at long since defunct Virgin Music stores located in Myer (remember those?), ironed clothing, altered clothing, made and sold jointed mohair style teddy bears, made and sold handbags, worked as a paralegal in a conveyancing law firm (an experience that made me never want to work in a law firm ever again), worked as an investigator for the Federal Government, marked law papers for QUT, worked as a character model, worked in a very niche area of tax compliance for the Federal Government and I now work in grants design for the Federal Government with a fabulous team spread all around the country. Oh… and I write children’s picture books. And I am a Mom!

What themes are recurring in your work?

At a high level, optimism and positivity are recurring themes in my work. On a more macro level, all of my books come from a very personal place and so you can learn a lot about me by reading my books. All of my books are tangible expressions of my feelings and I am so grateful to have worked with so many talented illustrators. So, I guess my personality is a recurring theme in my work.

What have been the highlights of your career?

The highlight of my career as an author was being shortlisted for the 2017 Children’s Book Council of the Year Early Childhood Picture Book for All I Want for Christmas is Rain. I was shocked and also so grateful to have been shortlisted. It was a joy to be able to take my son to the awards in Hobart. Also, every book I have had published has been a highlight! I still pinch myself.

Where have your works been published?

Max & George was published in France and South Korea. Fearless with Dad was published in South Korea and China. Twelve Days of Kindness is published in the United Kingdom, as well as Australia.

What are you passionate about?

I am passionate about a lot of things! I’ll try to narrow it down to a few things. Firstly, I am passionate about working hard and having a tenacious spirit. I don’t give up easily or without a fight and if you tell me I can’t do something, I will do it. I feel like Australia has been very good to me and so I work hard to repay my gratitude to this country and its people.

Secondly, I am passionate about books and their vital importance for kids and adults. All schools should have a library and a full-time librarian (many don’t, which is just not okay).

Finally, I am passionate about potato gems.

Haven’t I seen you before?

Haven’t I seen you before? Maybe I once developed your photos?!

Or maybe you have seen me when I played the Mom in a commercial for a Queensland government campaign for a doomed policy.

Anything else you’d like to share with us?

My famous bollaignaise sauce recipe! There are two secret ingredients.

Testimonials

Cori was a hit amongst our boys. The boys loved listening to her read her books and talk to them about some of her favourite books.  As a school, we were lucky enough to have Cori for three days and she visited all classes from Prep to Year 3. One of the activities that Cori did with our boys was to write a continuing story.  At each classroom she visited, she added to the story. We are planning to read this story on assembly to the whole school. Also, before leaving our school Cori gifted us a copy of her new book, ‘Twelve Days of Kindness’. It is one of the go-to books at lunchtime, where I will often see two or more boys sitting together and reading and discussing the book. We hope to have Cori come back to our school in the near future.

—Toowoomba Grammar School
, August 2019

Cori Brooke came to our school as our Book Week visiting author. She spent time with our Prep to Year 3 classes, and without exception they were all entertained thoroughly for each 45 minute session. Cori has a wonderful ability to engage the students – she speaks at their level, is very friendly and open, and through her use of both her books and props manages to keep large groups of young minds occupied for the allocated time. Cori was happy to answer questions and in general was a very satisfactory contributor to our Book Week celebrations.

—Wynnum State School, August 2018

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