East Coast

School Visits

Talking to children and sharing my passion for books and writing is one of the great joys of being an author. I am very lucky to travel around Australia, speaking to literally thousands of students every year at schools, festivals, libraries, conferences and literary events around Australia.

My school presentations are designed for different year groups from kindergarten to year 10, and have been described as “interactive, dynamic, highly entertaining and inspiring… leaving the students excited about books, writing and reading.” The talks cover a range of topics and can be tailored to meet specific school requirements and curriculum outcomes.

My creative writing workshops inspire young writers to use their imaginations through brainstorming, interactive exercises, tips and writing techniques. Topics covered include the creative writing process, inspiration, plotting and planning, realistic dialogue, creating characters, vivid settings, editing and story structure.

I also do presentations and workshops for parents, teachers, librarians and aspiring writers.

If you would like me to speak at your school or event please contact my speaking agents:

Beth at The Children’s Bookshop Speakers Agency NSW
W: http://thechildrensbookshopspeakersagency.com.au/
E: staff@thechildrensbookshop.com.au
P: (02) 9481 8811

Booked Out Speaker’s Agency Victoria
W: www.bookedout.com.au
E: bookings@bookedout.com.au
P: 03 9824 0177

Or for other states email belinda@belindamurrell.com.au

 

Testimonials

‘Our students have not stopped raving about Belinda’s session…’ – Somerset Celebration of Literature

‘Belinda Murrell is a total inspiration!’ – Christine Micalef, Trinity Catholic school

‘Thank you so much … The students had a fabulous time and learnt so much and so did I … you are very encouraging and inspiring.’ – LISA ALLUM, Director of Gifted Education, Loquat Valley Anglican School

‘Students and teachers alike are raving about how much they enjoyed your talk. The feedback has been outstanding!’ – Tangara School

‘The students and staff have been raving about the visit and everyone gained so much from it. It was a real treat. Belinda and Serena are an absolute delight and they even ‘reached’ some of our “don’t- get-enthusiastic- about-anything- boys” who told me they really enjoyed it. Thanks a million.’ – Annabelle Eckroyd Pleasant Hills PS

“I LOVED BELINDA’S WORKSHOP. It inspired me to write…She is my favourite author AND ALWAYS WILL BE. She is so inspiring, kind and funny, plus her books make me bump into everything!!!” Mi-Jung, student at Clover Hill State School

“I would like to thank you again for the intensive session you ran with Extension English students ….I can say absolutely that the quality of their writing improved markedly following your workshop.”  Jodie Bennet, Principal, St Lukes, June 2014

 

Author Sessions and Topics

Here are just some of the author presentation and creative writing workshops that I run. With all my sessions I am very flexible and happy to adapt topics to meet to specific requests from teachers.

Friends, Family and Animal Adventures

Suitable for students in years K-2 (45 minutes)

Designed for students in Kindy to year 2, this author talk includes stories about books, animals and being an author. This is a fun, interactive session with students dressing up as characters from the books and learning how an author takes real life events, and turns them into exciting stories. The presentation discusses inspiration behind the Sun Sword Trilogy and my illustrated Lulu Bell series, for younger readers was inspired by my own childhood living in a vet hospital Fun stories, photographs and lively Q&A encourage kids to get excited about books and reading.

Topics Covered

  • Writing as a child
  • Setting and character
  • Where do I get inspiration for stories?
  • The creative writing process
  • Highlights of being an author
  • The relationship between author and illustrator
  • Student Q$A

Mysteries, Time Slip and Dangerous Quests

One hour presentation – Suitable for students in years 3-6 I love talking with children about being an author, my books and where I get my inspiration from. This is a fun, interactive session with stories about my writing as a child the family history of writing, and how I became a children’s author. I discuss writing The Sun Sword Trilogy, a fantasy adventure series for boys and girls, for my own three children. My award winning time slip series including The Ivory Rose, The Forgotten Pearl and The Sequin Star, brings Australian history to life. More recently, my Pippa’s Island series for middle grade readers is about friendship, families and seaside adventures on a gorgeous tropical island. Fun stories, photographs and lively Q&A encourage kids to get excited about books and reading.

Topics covered

  • Setting and character
  • Where do I get inspiration for stories?
  • The creative writing process including research, planning, plotting and editing
  • The relationship between author and illustrator
  • Design and development of book covers with visual examples
  • Writing Tips
  • Student Q&A

The Creative Writing Process

For secondary students from years 7 to 10

Best-selling author Belinda Murrell provides students with an insight into the creative writing process and writing books for children and teenagers. Belinda will discuss the ‘art of writing’ – from inspiration to finished product and the rollercoaster ride in between. Using stories, photographs, brainstorming, moodboards, creative exercises and student Q&A to inspire students with their own writing.

 

Creative Writing Workshops

Get Creative

Unleash your imagination in this dynamic workshop with bestselling children’s author Belinda Murrell. Create your own adventurous plots, vivid settings, and characters who leap off the page. Enjoy lively writing activities, character sketches, brainstorming games and have all your questions about writing answered!

Animal Tales – Creative Workshop for Keen Young Writers

A dynamic writing workshop especially for talented writers, with best-selling author of the Lulu Bell series Belinda Murrell. Enjoy lively writing sketches, brainstorming games, and explore the magic of story writing.

Creating Complex Characters and Sensational Settings.

(60-90 minutes suitable for primary and secondary)

My creative writing workshops are a mixture of brainstorming games, lightning writing activities, character sketches, discussions, story creation, readings from children’s work and Q&A sessions, with the emphasis on being fun, dynamic and interactive. Through these activities we explore the elements of writing such as character, setting, planning, plotting, dialogue, beginnings and endings.

Topics Covered

  • Brainstorming game – key elements of stories
  • Creating characters who leap off the page
  • Creating vivid settings using 5 senses
  • Show Not Tell – The Wild Classroom scenario
  • Busting clichés and stereotypes
  • Lightning Writing – The haunted house
  • Writing Tips
  • Student Q&A

Plotting and Planning.

(60-90 minutes suitable for primary and secondary)

Fail to Plan. Plan to Fail. This creative writing workshops is a mixture of brainstorming games, lightning writing activities, plotting exercises, discussions, story creation, readings from children’s work and Q&A sessions, with the emphasis on being fun, dynamic and interactive. Through these activities we explore the elements of writing such as planning, plotting, dialogue, beginnings and endings.

Topics Covered

  • Plot graph – rollercoaster plan
  • Causing trouble – obstacles and problems
  • Story planning
  • Beginnings and endings
  • ADD – action, dialogue, description
  • Lightning Writing – Action scene
  • Writing Tips
  • Student Q&A

Write. Write. Write

(Full day workshop suitable for primary and secondary)

3 x 90 minute sessions

This full day writing workshop is ideal for extension English students and talented writers. This program is designed to inspire and enthuse young writers through intensive writing exercises, planning and editing tips, sharing and feedback, character sketches, discussions, and Q&A sessions, with the emphasis on being fun, dynamic and interactive. Through these activities we explore the elements of writing such as character, setting, planning, plotting, action, description, dialogue, beginnings and endings.


Resources for Teachers

Belinda’s books, such as The River Charm and The Forgotten Pearl, have been studied in many schools. Detailed teacher’s notes are available to download here: