Hi I'm Elena,
I write stories and poems and sometimes even story-poems. I like quirky plots and characters - an evil blender; a kleptomaniacal cat; a girl with an insatiable appetite for adventure and red berry jelly, all make an appearance in my stories. This website gives you some more information about the kinds of things I write and a bit about myself as well. Be warned, there is nothing realistic about my stories whatsoever!
In 2010 a group of 9 New Zealand children's writers had a facebook conversation which resulted in Fabostory, a popular online junior fiction novel written side by side with New Zealand children.
Listen to a recording of a ballad I wrote for the Fabostory2 poetry challenge, read by Kathy White.
I have wanted to be a writer forever, it just took me a long time to figure it out. It all started at age three, when I had my first poem published in the children's pages of the local paper....
More than forty years later:
One day I came home - without wild riches and a little dejected - after competing in 'Who Wants to be a Millionaire,' which I had been, sadly, trying to get on for the last two years. I needed a new goal – preferably one that didn't involve a TV game show. For a long time I had known I wanted to do something creative, but what? Serendipitously, a friend had just enrolled in a children's writing course; I decided to put my name down as well and have never looked back.
I live with my family in Auckland and have been writing for children since 2004. I have had a number of stories, poems, plays and readers published by educational publishers in New Zealand, Australia and the United States. My lucky break came in 2008 when Mt Eden illustrator, Brian Lovelock, put forward my text for "The Rain Train" to Walker Books in Australia.
The Rain Train (illustrated by Brian Lovelock) – Walker Books Australia, 2010
Ophelia Wild, Secret Spy (illustrated by Tracy Duncan) – Walker Books Australia, release date February 2012
1st - Auckland City Libraries Poetry Competition 2008
NZSA Mentor programme 2009/2010
1st - The Manawatu (New Zealand) International Poetry for Performance Competition 2010
The Rain Train – finalist CJ Korean 3rd Picture Book Awards 2010
2010 Todd New Writers' Bursary – towards writing a collection of children's poems. Thanks to Creative New Zealand and the Todd Corporation Ltd.
The Rain Train - Storylines Notable Picture Book 2011
Writing in rhythm and rhyme
|Biography printable version|
For me, writing poetry is pure pleasure. I love playing with the words until I find exactly the right ones to make the rhythm, form, tone and feeling all come together to work as a whole. Several of my poems, like the one below, have been pubished in the School Magazine.
In 2011, thanks to the Todd New Writer's Bursary, I was able to devote a large amount of my time to writing children's poems. I enjoyed every moment and now, a folder full of nearly 70 poems is sitting, expectantly, on my publisher's large pile ...
Waxing and Waning
Your face of silver
lights the sky
a perfect plate
of pale moon pie
and if I took
a bite of you
then I'd be full
and you'd be new
The School Magazine, Countdown, March 2008