Christopher Cheng writes about the night his and Sarah Davis's book, 'Sounds Spooky' got its just rewards.
"So it came to pass that Christopher and Sarah with their respective spouses decided that a night out on the town was ordered and they duly decided that attendance at the Aurealis Award early in May would be a nice occasion for them all to do together. There would be many folk there (and maybe some kids lit people too) and their picture book was shortlisted for the awards.
It was lovely to see quite a few familiar faces at the awards as these awards are mostly in categories that are for works created for a much older readership. The Aurealis Awards, established in 1995 recognise the achievements of Australian science fiction, fantasy and horror writers - and that includes children's books too!
Folks were attired in tuxedos, ball gowns, gloves, scarves, hats and caps ... and there were a few more casually dressed folk were present. Imagine our surprise when we opened the Programme and saw a lovely advert from our publisher promoting Sounds Spooky. We perched ourselves in a row near the front with other kids book folk and the ceremony began with our friend Kate Forsyth - dressed in all her evening finery - MC the gathering.
Right at the start Sophie Masson popped onto the stage and was announcing the children's category. Very receptive I was - not - for both Sophie and Kate had been looking at our little gathering! The screen featured all the shortlisted titles and I was preparing the camera to snap the graphic announcing winner - "One of my friends would love to see their name up there," is what I was thinking and I could blog it too.
Alas, I missed taking that winner's photo. To say that we were stunned is a slight overstatement. Someone *nearly* said a rude word. Mouths were open wide enough to swallow a whale. Eyes were popping out of two heads as we two walked onto the stage ... where we announced that we had NO speech prepared as we really didn't expect to be honoured with the award. Thanks all ... what a thrill and what a buzz!
Of course how did this book eventuate - Sarah and Chris are both Sydney SCBWI people and have gathered together not just at SCBWI meetings ... but THAT is where their partnership began, at a NSW SCBWI gathering just a few years ago!"
See information on the awards here (http://www.aurealisawards.com/)
and read more on Christopher's blog here (http://chrischengauthor.blogspot.com.au/2012/05/sounds-spooky-award-winner.html or http://tinyurl.com/6nj7tpp)