This weekend I am traveling to Hamilton, New Zealand, for my brother’s graduation. Hamilton, in the North Island, is the home of Waikato University. Although I am certainly excited about going to New Zealand, Hamilton is not one of those places that leaves you breathless. So, this time, I am looking for a different type of vacation. I'm excited about enjoying the cafes, the University, the parks, those everyday places. Most of all, I'm excited about enjoying the bookstores.
The first time I was in New Zealand, I was jumping from town to town so quickly that we didn't have time to look carefully at the bookstores. I wanted to buy some children’s books by New Zealand authors, but it was hard to determine who the New Zealand authors were, plus the books were extremely expensive.
This time, I am going with the intention of searching for the books published by Gecko Press, a New Zealand print that publishes books from several international authors and a few New Zealanders. More specifically, I am looking for Joy Cowley books. Joy Cowley is known internationally thanks to books such as Mrs. Wishy-Washy's Farm, published by Philomel. According to Gecko Press, “Joy Cowley is one of New Zealand's best-loved writers.”
If you read my post about A Real Multicultural Library, you will understand exactly why I am looking for Joy’s books. In addition, I would like to find some books that feature the native animals. I remember seeing a series of books in which the main character was a Kiwi, New Zealand’s national bird.
Not only I am curious about the kids’ book market in other countries, I am also considering the possibility of sending my work to international markets, as I have been getting too many rejections and the silence treatment lately. Now, certainly I understand that one should not be discouraged by rejections, but I wonder what exactly these rejections are saying. Are they simply saying that my work does not fit that publisher’s or agent’s interests? Are they saying that my stories are not marketable? Or are they saying that I am a bad writer? I have no idea.
So, I am looking for inspiration and other points of view. Let’s see what I find out...