Meet Jackie Kerin

20 Mar


I first made contact with Jackie when I joined Storytelling Australia back in 2010. We chatted on the phone and via email, sharing our passion for storytelling and writing. Then, one Saturday morning, I went on down to the Mentone Public Library to listen to  Jackie tell stories and speak about her life as a writer and performer. I was spellbound for the whole hour and completely inspired by her stories and her dedication to the craft of storytelling. It was an intimate group on that Saturday morning, so we had the opportunity to ask questions and engage in a real dialogue about where ideas come from and how she went about the task of writing and preparing her stories. I remember thinking at the time, that I would have loved my students from ‘The Writer’s Club’ to be sitting alongside me. I didn’t quite realise it then, but the idea for The Writer’s Masterclass was slowly emmerging. I wanted young writers to have that same experience and come away bursting with ideas and stories. Jackie is the author of two picture books, Pharlap the Wonder Horse, and Lyerbird! A True Story. Both of these books showcase Jackie’s love of the Australian history and home grown stories (which are her specialty!!) Like to get to know Jackie better? Keep reading…

Where is your favourite place to write?

Probably in my study. But I always carry a notebook and pencil. I like writing on the train for some strange reason. And I like pencils better than pens.

Who is your favourite author?

That changes. It’s usually Mark Twain. He was an American with a splendid moustache. But right now I’m reading Anna Karenina, so it’s Leo Tolstoy. He was a Russian with a splendid beard. There are so many  – please don’t make me choose.

What is one of your most vivid childhood memories? Climbing trees and then more trees.

Name one essential item you keep on your desk.

My diary.

What is one thing you couldn’t live without?

My diary

What was the best birthday present you ever received?

My first bike. It was second hand and freshly painted blue. It was love at first sight. I have ridden a bike ever since.

Characters in stories sometimes have special talents or powers. If you could choose an amazing talent or power for yourself, what would it be?

It used to be flying but since I read Harry Potter I have found myself wishing I had the power to apparate.

How do you collect and organise your story ideas?

I have a folder on my computer titled ‘story ideas’. Inside this folder are many other folders carefully named with possible titles. I am very organized with this, as I wouldn’t want a good idea to be lost.

What is the best thing about becoming a writer?

I am doing what I love to do – making stories.

What do you find most challenging about being a writer?

Sitting down and getting on with it. Writing is hard work. It doesn’t make sense but much as I love writing, I can make up all sorts of excuses not to go and sit down and just do it!!!

Your favourite all time meal is placed on the table in front of you. What is it?

It would have to be something from the garden … home made basil pesto with homegrown tomato salad followed by poached figs (from the tree) with meltin.

Thanks Jackie! We’re all looking forward to welcoming you to ‘The Writer’s Masterclass’ ! Jackie will have signed copies of her picture books on sale on the 11th April.

Phar Lap – the Wonderhorse by Jackie Kerin, illustrated by Patricia Mullins, published Museum Victoria (Eve Pownall CBCA Noteable) $20.00
Lyrebird! A True Story by Jackie Kerin, illustrated by Peter Gouldthorpe, published Museum Victoria $17.00

We have limited places available for The Writer’s Masterclass on the 11th April 2013 at Oakleigh primary School. Visit’s home page for program details. And why don’t you head on over to Jackie’s website and visit her blog? She is always up to something interesting!

Print Phar Lap front cover

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