On Wednesday the 15th of April, a very good friend of mine, Julie Nickerson, held the launch party for her first children’s book, Pippa’s Perfect Ponytail. This book is a delightful early reader, released as part of Penguin’s highly successful ‘Aussie Nibbles‘ range. The story follows Pippa, who is getting ready for her birthday party. For parties, Pippa always wears her hair in a perfect ponytail, but on the big day, not everything goes perfectly to plan.
The launch was particularly special to me because Julie and I have been crit partners for many years now. I have had the joy of watching both Julie and the story grow and develop on their journey towards publication. So I was also incredibly touched when Julie asked me to launch the book. It was such a joy, although Julie may have secretly regretted asking someone who knows her so well to speak publicly about her, because I may have given away a few secrets… (this is a snippet from my speech)
As writers, we’re often asked if the characters in our books are based on people we know. Specifically, we’re often asked if our characters are actually us in disguise. Writers spend a lot of their time trying to convince people that they’re not – that the characters in our stories are actually their own people, with their own unique quirks, strengths and weaknesses. But I have a secret. Pippa, the main character in this book, is actually a LOT like Julie.
Just like Pippa, Julie needs things to be not just perfect, but perfectly perfect.
There were about 80 children and adults at the launch, and lots of food, laughter and books. Party games were played and creativity was encouraged at an illustration table (which the delightful Peter Allert helped me to run). Following is a photo diary from the day, chronicling the general hilarity: