A Christmas Tail story reading at Gold Coast Christmas Markets

This year A Christmas Tail co-authored by Donna Smith and Helen Ross, featured upon invitation, at the Gold Coast Christmas Markets, Broadwater Parklands, Gold Coast.

As Helen lives in Brisbane, she was able to attend featured story telling sessions on Friday 19 December and Sunday 21 December 2014.

Story snopsis:

Melanie, Monty and baby Peter Mouse live in a doll’s house called Cherrywood Cottage. The Mouse family are full of excitement as they await the arrival of Santa Paws. However, an unlikely turn of events sets about a hilarious twist to their Christmas festivities. Find out how Santa Paws loses his trousers.

Any one familiar with this site or the picture book knows that Peter Mouse is the ‘star’ of this delightful tale, however Rupert Rat, who also appears in the story, decided he wanted to be the ‘star’ at the Gold Coast markets.

So here are some pics taken over the weekend – Rupert hogging the photos.


Click on each image to enlarge; also can be viewed as a slideshow.

And if you are looking at downloading the eBook before Christmas, click here -will take you directly to the Amazon link. The eBook is also available on iTunes.

A Christmas Tail is also available in Hardback and Paperback versions on Amazon and other major online bookstores.

A little more about A Christmas Tail co-author, Donna Smith

During our fabulous cyber launch celebration on Monday 2 December  we found out a few things that you may not have  known about the co-authors of A Christmas Tail, Donna Smith and Helen Ross.  Unfortunately, we were so busy that we had to keep the speeches fairly short. Consequently, we thought we’d invite Donna Smith back to find out a little more about her and her busy ‘writerly’ life.

So welcome again, Donna.

Donna Smith image

It is so wonderful to be back.  It has been a fabulous week.

It certainly has, and we have just loved the celebrations, interviews, cheesecakes, and activities. I know you can’t stay long but could you just tell us a little about yourself?

Of course, I’d love to.  I am an experienced academic writer (including course manuals, assessment criteria and learning modules), published author and co-author of texts on Animal Welfare topics,  blog administrator and content writer.  Also I am a published children’s author  and haiku poet. Over the past few years I have also had many children’s stories and poems published in anthologies, including children’s stories shortlisted in various competitions, including first place.  And I have also set up my own publishing company, Jelli-Beanz Publishing.

I live in Victoria with my husband and our three children.

What genres do you write in/or have written in?

I usually write in fantasy and science fiction for children.  I have also had poetry published for both adults and children. But I loved working on the picture book, A Christmas Tail, getting to know these lovable characters.

What words best describe you?

Family, family, family and grateful, grateful and grateful!

Have you any other words of advice?

Enjoy your writing and be prepared to learn patience as it is a long process.  Research, writing, editing, submitting, waiting, rejection, re-submitting etc. can take years to see a piece of work in print.

Wow! You are such a busy person, and I know this is a short visit today.  So before you go, could you kindly complete the following?

My earliest memory is running through the snow in my Auntie’s orchard.

At school I was quiet and very sporty.

When I was a child I wanted to travel to outer space and be a female version of Indianna Jones.

I relax by being with my family.

If only I could complete a novel I have been working on for four (4) years this February. It has been back and forth between Sally (children’s author and manuscript assessor, Sally Odgers) and I numerous times.  Happily though, 2014 is the year it will be completed.

In the movie of my life I’d be played by Natalie Portman perhaps. She is a fantastic actress and full of light.  She could bring any character to the screen successfully.

I’m always being asked, ‘Did you always want to be a writer?’ Yes, I remember being quite young and labelling the spine of my books so they looked just like a real library.  I would make call numbers and write my name on pieces of white paper and then sticky tape them to the spines of the book. I always loved the smell of the paper and loved flicking through the pages, even before I learnt to read.

I’m always being told – How do you fit so much into one day?  I am not sure to be honest. Just quietly between you and I, Rupert helps me a lot!

NB: If you don’t know who Rupert is, you’ll just have to read, A Christmas Tail.

Thank you so much Donna for dropping by. Is that Rupert hiding behind the curtain, trying to get your attention?

Thanks again.  It has been a pleasure. And yes, I think that is Rupert.

Well, we certainly haven’t seen the last of co-authors, Donna Smith and Helen Ross. It has been such a wonderful week.

And I smell something very yummy. Melanie Mouse (yes, you’ll have to read A Christmas Tail to find out who she is) has just made a batch of chocolate Mousse cheesecake treats.   (Mousse, not mouse. HA! Definitely not made from mice).  However, chocolate is definitely not good for cats or dogs. But please try.  And if you love the taste, the YouTube link is below.

Choc Mousse Cheesecake Bites



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