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Corinne Fenton has a passion for picture books, especially those that have a connection with history. Her picture books are read by four to ninety-four year olds.
I loved books from a very young age and began writing poetry at primary school. Before I became a writer I worked as a Secretary, Chamber-maid, Waitress, Nanny and Executive Assistant. For a while I also cooked chicken for Kentucky Fried, but I don’t tell many people that.
My stories have an element of social history and their characters are usually animals.
Holding my first picture book Queenie: One Elephant’s Story in my hands. Receiving CBCA Awards for Queenie, The Dog on the Tuckerbox, Bob the Railway Dog and My Friend Tertius. Attending the Bologna Book Fair in Italy in March 2010 and seeing my picture books showcased there. Having my books Little Dog and the Christmas Wish and One Christmas Eve chosen as the themes for the Myer Christmas Windows in 2015 and 2016. Seeing my words become beautiful illustrations is one thing but also seeing them come to life in the Myer windows was a humbling experience. In 2017 the Eltham Library held an exhibition of my works ‘Words and Windows’ and the works of the illustrators I’ve worked with. In Melbourne’s Block Arcade there is a small likeness of myself which was part of the characters in the 2015 windows. It resides in a glass case as this is where I started writing Little Dog and the Christmas Wish, at a table at the Hopetoun Tea Rooms in the Block Arcade.
Many of my picture books have been published in my home city of Melbourne by wonderful Melbourne publisher, Black Dog Books which later became an imprint of Walker Books Australia. I have also had books published by Allen and Unwin in Melbourne, Ford Street Publishing in Melbourne, Candlewick USA and The Five Mile Press in Melbourne. Around 20 education titles have been published by different educational publishers and many of these appear in other languages around the world. I have a title coming out in October 2019 with New Frontier, which will be released in Australia and the UK simultaneously.
Producing beautiful picture books and making sure that every word has the right to be there.
Corinne’s presentation was wonderful. All who were there enjoyed her talk. We were particularly impressed with the meticulous process she undertook to research her subjects and the interesting subjects she chooses to investigate. It was great storytelling. Corinne, may your investigations and unique storytelling continue. We, the readers, will be the all the more richer for the books you author.
Thank you for coming and spending time with us at our school St Clement of Rome. You have made writing sound a lot more fun and we are really looking forward to enjoying it more in the future. You have given us lots of tips for writing, like our writing doesn’t need to be long to be good and the more time we take to write a story the better it will be. You have given a lot of us more confidence with our writing because sometimes when we write we don’t want to read it out and share it with other people. You have inspired all of us to never give up on our stories no matter how bad we think they are. We hope that you continue to write picture story books for kids and what you do.