Never Smile at a Crocodile

CoverI chose my first festival event using the time-honoured technique of stabbing at the page with my eyes screwed shut. That’s how I ended up with a ticket for –Des Hunt and his book The Crocodile Nest. I like the fact that I don’t know anything about either the author or his books. I t makes me feel like an intrepid adventurer as I stride out on safari across Aotea Square to The Edge.

This turns out to have been a very good choice of event. Packed to the rafters with young people who give you real hope for the future, I sat next to a young man so bedecked with achievement badges that even if he dropped out right here and now he would probably still qualify as an Alpha Male.

Des Hunt is a great presenter and must have been a terrific teacher. He had that audience in the palm of his hand and they loved him. With eye-catching graphics, touches of magic, a science experiment and his sharp sense of humour, Des elucidated for us what made a good piece of writing.

I swear I could write a book after all his advice, but will instead make do with practicing on you dear bloggers and blogettes. He has what sounds like a really appealing story in The Crocodile Nest – adventure, nature, a bit of technology and a happy ending  but admits that the book that challenged him most was Whale Pot Bay whose main character was a girl and therefore challenging by her very nature.

I emerged from the packed venue humming you know what and with a big crocodile grin on my face. My first Festival event – we have lift-off!

4 thoughts on “Never Smile at a Crocodile

  1. zackids 12 May 2010 / 4:23 pm

    Des Hunt’s books are great! I’ve read quite a few of them and they’re great adventure/mystery stories set in New Zealand. His book Cry of the Taniwha is a finalist in the Junior Fiction category of the NZ Post Children’s Book Awards and my pick for the winner. I haven’t had the chance to meet Des and listen to his speak so I’m very jealous!

  2. robertafsmith 12 May 2010 / 5:34 pm

    You would have loved his presentation, I am sure. I’ve not read many kids books lately, but I’m tempted to try one of his.

  3. helen 13 May 2010 / 12:42 pm

    Good Lift Off….Sounds like I’ll have to buy this book for Thomas,

    • Roberta Smith 13 May 2010 / 2:30 pm

      Great to have your comments Helen – helps to calm me down when the wobblies threaten!

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