May 06th

Dark Imaginings

Category: Bookshop visit

Finally, I’m sitting down to revisit this great event and to give a massive shout out to my girl, Sarah Epstein! When I announced I was coming to Melbourne for Supanova, Sarah was one of my first writer friends to reach out and say: HEY! Let’s catch up and how about we join forces for an event. I was stoked as this had been on my agenda, hook up a Melbourne event and connect with author buddies.

Sarah had recently been on a panel with the gorgeous Katya de Becerra and felt the three of us would be a great fit for a panel on the darker side of Young Adult literature. We each of us write stories that tend towards the spine tingling and creepy. I suggested we ask The YA Room if they would like to be involved and Sarah Robinson Hatch jumped on board and volunteered to be our MC for the night. Readings Kids, Carlton were happy to be our bookshop hosts.

We quickly formed a group chat to brainstorm ideas and landed on the title “Dark Imaginings”. And then I was totally spoilt by the genius of these women. Sarah Epstein is not only an incredible author but an illustrator and designer as well. She flew into a creative whirlwind and designed for us the most gorgeous info graphics, gifs and swag. Check it out the gif here.

Yes! Sarah made us Jelly Bean lolly bags!
Coca-Cola & Strawberry flavoured!
To add to the fun The YA Room gave away 3 sets of 3 copies of our books! Sarah Robinson Hatch is a fabulous bookstagrammer and she took wonderfully creepy promo photos in the build up to the event.

Katya and I were so blessed by Sarah’s design expertise and had so much fun sharing the graphics on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook. Sarah Robinson Hatch put together an amazing list of questions and on the night, dressed in spooky black like Gothic queens, we discussed the inspiration behind our creepy books. Sarah Epstein’s award winning novel Small Spaces explores the idea of a frightening childhood imaginary friend and questions the protagonist’s sanity. Katya De Becerra’s What The Woods Keep weaves mythology and science, abductions and disappearances. My novel The Rift also weaves mythology with evil science, hell hounds and a curse that terrorises an isolated community. Despite the dark content, there were a lot of laughs!

Sarah designed these gorgeous tree decorations! Isn’t she incredible? I told you we were spoilt!

One of the great joys of the event for me, was having the opportunity to finally meet some readers who have supported me for years. Like Renee and Sam, Samantha and Becky. Truly like catching up with old friends.

Renee & Sam

Thank you, once again, Sarah Epstein, Katya de Becerra, Sarah Robinson-Hatch and Readings Kids, Carlton, for making our event a night to remember. Thank you to the wonderful readers and authors who came along to Dark Imaginings to support us. Much love to you all!

Leave a Reply

Rachael is a member of the New Zealand Society of Authors and you can visit the NZSA at and the Top of the South branch Her publisher is Walker Books Australia