September 10th

Looking Back: Reading Matters

Category: Uncategorized

I am so ridiculously overdue for updating my news page. I want to put it on the record that the Reading Matters Conference (June 1-4th) and the Regional Tour of Victoria (June 5th-7th) was completely and utterly brilliant. I felt so incredibly honoured to be invited to speak by State Library Victoria, star struck by the authors in attendance, inspired by the keynote addresses and “at home” with my people: writers/readers/book lovers.































Speculative Fiction Panel with the illustrious Amie Kaufman (moderator), Jay Kristoff & Alison Goodman.

New Romantics Panel with Danielle Binks (moderator), Randa Abdel-Fattah & ‘the” Jennifer Niven.


Me, pretending not to freak out, meeting the beautiful (inside & out) Jennifer Niven.


Publishing 101 Panel with Jennifer Niven & Shivuan Plozza


Reading Matters has a great reputation as one of the top YA writers/readers events on the Oz calendar. I had been watching it on Twitter over the last few years wistfully dreaming that I might one day be included in the line-up. When Adele Walsh sent me an email asking me if I would like to come, I may have produced a pterodactyl-like screech of glee. DREAMS DO COME TRUE!














Gorgeous, generous and inspiring Adele Walsh, Co-ordinator of Reading Matters Conference.


Social Media Panel with Bec Kavanagh (moderator) Shivaun Plozza & Lili Wilkinson


One of my favourite parts of attending these events is the opportunity to meet people I’ve been friends with on Twitter in REAL LIFE! And to make wonderful new connections. The writers at RM were so much fun, such generous, kind people. I laughed and laughed a lot. I heard great stories, inspiring stories, stories that broke my heart. What a community.

Dearly beloved inter web author buddies: Amy King, Nicole Hayes, Ellie Marney, Rebecca James & Fleur Ferris.

More inter web favs: Jessica Walton, Kim Kane, Alison Goodman, Simmone Howell, Emily Gale, Nova Weetman, Vikki Wakefield.

Touring regional Victoria was wonderful. So many times I was struck by how like home it felt, with just this one degree of intangible ‘difference’. As we drove from Melbourne to Warrnambool, Timboon and Colac, I kept my eyes peeled for roos and koala’s but none to be spotted. However, the sights were beautiful and the people so welcoming and friendly. I travelled and presented with Canadian comic book/YA writing super star Mariko Tamaki and writer/RM host, Karen Andrews. We had a great time together and a great time visiting the local schools and libraries.


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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