Supporting the new Kiwi Author Pen Pals programme

I’m excited to talk about a new project that connects New Zealand authors and illustrators with local school students called Kiwi Author Pen Pals – and the bookstore is supporting it!

I first saw the idea in Australia when two authors, Kate Foster and Dee White, launched Author Pen Pals there late last year and thought if no one else in New Zealand picked up on the idea, maybe I will… so I did!

I’m grateful fellow Kiwi authors Jo van Dam and Jenn Rackham offered to help and we already have 13 authors ready to participate when the programme gets underway in Term 3.

So, what is Kiwi Author Pen Pals?

Authors and illustrators pair up with a class or classes for the school year and commit to sending at least four postcards or letters during terms 2 and 3, and the class commits to replying to them at least twice during the same period. For 2023, Kiwi Author Pen Pals will run in term 3 only.

There’s a whole host of things authors and illustrators can talk about in their written communications – favourite books they’ve enjoyed, writing and drawing prompts for the class to try, or share fun stories that might have happened to them and encouraging the students to tell their own stories. Likewise, there are all kinds of things the students may want to write about when they reply to their author pen pal.

Jo, Jenn and I would love to have 25 authors and illustrators, plus 25 classes to pair them up with for term 3 this year. If you can share this info about Kiwi Author Pen Pals with any teachers or authors and illustrators who you think might be interested, that would be amazing, thank you!

7 June 2023