Do you want to know more about Tania? Check out the FAQ below.
Where were you born?
I was born in Whyalla, South Australia in 1971, which makes me…HOW OLD?! 😯
My family moved to Adelaide, South Australia when I was 13 years old. I remember feeling really sad about leaving all of my friends behind and terrified about starting at a new school. It all worked out ok though.
Where do you live now?
I live in Adelaide, South Australia.
What were your favourite books as a kid?
The Ghost of Thomas Kempe by Penelope Lively was a book I read when I was about ten years old and it really blew me away. I’ve since read it many more times (the last time being last year!) although I do need to find a new copy of the book now as my old one is literally falling apart.
Anything Enid Blyton. I loved the Famous Five, the Magic Wishing Chair, The Faraway Tree Series and many of her other books (more than I can write here). In fact I am now enjoying reading them all over again with my daughter.
What was the first book you published?
My first book was a picture book called Dog on Log, which came out in February 2013.
To see more of my books (including the Jinny and Cooper series) you can click HERE.
Where do you get your story ideas from?
A lot of my ideas come from talking and playing with my daughter. Dog on Log was a game that we used to play in the sandpit when she was a toddler. It was my way of teaching her prepositions (under, on and in), rhyme (dog, log, hog, frog) and opposites (near – far, up – down).
The Jinny and Cooper series started after my daughter asked for a story about a magical, talking guinea pig. I don’t think Cooper was exactly what she had in mind but she loves him nonetheless.
Who are your favourite Australian children’s book authors?
I have so many favourite authors it is hard to know where to start!
Australia is lucky to have many fantastic authors including local legend Mem Fox (Where is the Green Sheep?), Jackie French (Diary of a Wombat), Jen Storer (Tensy Farlow and the Home for Mislaid Children), Tristen Bancks (Two Wolves), Janeen Brian (I’m a Dirty Dinosaur), Andy Griffiths (The Treehouse Series), Alison Lester (Kissed by the Moon), Katrina Germein (My Dad thinks he’s Funny!) and many, many more!
How about overseas authors?
When it comes to picture books, I love Julia Donaldson’s sense of rhythm and rhyme, especially Tyrannosaurus Drip, which is a fabulous book to read aloud. Lynley Dodd’s Hairy Maclary series is also a favourite and always make me laugh and I adore Emily Gravett’s books (Wolf Won’t Bite!).
In regards to novels, I love Neil Gaiman’s books for children, especially The Graveyard Book and Coraline. David Walliams (Awful Auntie) is also one of my favourite authors and Kelly Barnhill (The Girl who Drank the Moon) is someone I could read all day. And of course you can’t go past Roald Dahl (Matilda).
What are 5 things only your closest friends know about you?
1. I love chickens! My husband thinks I am weird. As a child I spent hours sitting in our chicken yard talking to the chickens. Come to think of it…I still do this! 😀
2. In my spare time like to crochet toys. Really!
3. I am terrified of cockroaches. I can handle snakes and spiders but cockroaches completely freak me out!
4. I am mad about bunting! I have bunting all over my house. In fact, my family are too scared to stand still just in case I cover them in bunting. When I first saw the cover of Dog on Log I was so thrilled that it had bunting!
5. I am partially deaf. I had an operation as a child that left me partially deaf in one ear.
So I guess now you are one of my closest friends! 😀
Are you married?
Yes, very happily so – to the most wonderful man who is okay with me turning the lights on at 3am to write down notes for my latest story idea. He also tolerates my crafting addiction, which makes him a saint!
Do you have children?
I have a beautiful daughter who inspires many of my stories!
Got any writing tips?
You can check out my TOP TEN TIPS FOR YOUNG WRITERS HERE