The Adventures of Squirky the Alien

A Children's Book Series on Adoption


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Squirky Book #3 Wins Crystal Kite Award!

crystal_commander

[This post is adapted from my frenzied FB update after we heard the news.]

“The Adventures of Squirky the Alien #3: Who is the Red Commander?” has won this year’s Crystal Kite Award (Middle East/India/Asia division)!

The annual Crystal Kite Award is given by the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) to recognise great books from 15 SCBWI regional divisions around the world. These books are chosen by other children’s book writers and illustrators.

“Who is the Red Commander?” is essentially about a flawed, fearful grown-up who gets told by two kids to face his personal monsters and get with the programme. It is the Squirky book closest to my heart as it parallels my journey in trying to get this book series out – an insecure, publicity-shy writer with zero experience writing children’s picture books trying to come up with not one, but SIX picture books on an uber-niche, kind-of-taboo-in-Asia topic like adoption. Can you imagine the amount of whining I put my husband through these past few years?

But like the Red Commander, I’ve realised that there are just some things I can’t sort out on my own. There would be no Squirky series without David’s evocative illustrations and MPH Group Publishing. The stories would have been a lot more convoluted without beta reader feedback from trusted writer friends. Practically no one would know about Squirky’s existence without the relentless shout-outs from  supportive buddies who are parent and book bloggers.

And to every one of you who bought these books for your kids or friends’/relatives’ kids even if you’re not from the adoption community: thank you for being open, for recognising that an adoption search story is still a story that any child can enjoy and relate to.

Ack, didn’t mean for this to sound like some sort of cheesy acceptance speech! But I felt I had to get this out just so you know that any reward star the blue alien underdog Squirky gets is really because of ALL your help. I am so grateful.


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All Things #AFCC

AFCC 2016 FB Banner

We’ll be pretty busy at Asian Festival of Children’s Content this year! If you’re coming, do drop by and say HI :))

*** 1. Launch of The Adventures of Squirky the Alien #6: When Does the Search End? [Note: This event is FREE and anyone can come!]
Date: Sun 29 May 2016
Time: 3-3.30pm
Venue: NLB Building, L1 Plaza

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2. Squirky author Melanie will be co-presenting a talk on “Being Honest about Difficult Issues with Stories” with NIE Associate Professor Ruth Wong [Note: You will need to have signed up for either the Parents Forum or Preschool & Primary Teachers Congress]
Date: Sun 29 May 2016
Time: 1.15-2.15pm
Venue: NLB Building, L16 The Pod

honest

She will also be moderating two panels discussing themes close to the Squirky book series:

‪#‎weneeddiversebooks‬. Really! [Note: You will need to have signed up for the Writers & Illustrators Conference]
Date: Wed, 25 May
Time: 2-3pm
Venue: L5 Possibility Room

– To S.I.R. (Socially Inclusive Reads) with Love: A socially inclusive picture book for kids, with or without special needs [Note: You will need to have signed up for the Preschool & Primary Teachers Congress]
Date: Sun 29 May 2016
Time: 11.15-12.15pm
Venue: NLB Building, B1 Multipurpose Room

3. Meanwhile, Squirky illustrator David “Wolfe” Liew will also be out and about quite a bit. For those of you inspired by his art, do check out:

– Portfolio Review [Note: You will need to have signed up for the Writers & Illustrators Conference, and submitted your sample art to AFCC]
Date: Fri, 29 May 2016
Time: 10.30am – 12.45pm
Venue: NLB Building, L16 The Pod

– The Fabulour Fear Factor [Note: You will need to have signed up for the Writers & Illustrators Conference.]
Date: Fri 29 May 2016
Time: 10.30-11.30am
Venue: NLB Building, B1 Multipurpose Room

– First Look: Illustration Critique [Note: You will need to have signed up for the Writers & Illustrators Conference, and submitted your sample art to AFCC]
Date: Thurs, 28 May 2016
Time: 3.15-4.15pm
Venue: NLB Building, L5 Imagination Room

For more information on this action-packed festival dedicated just to children’s content, do visit http://www.afcc.com.sg


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Six things to know about Squirky #6

squirky6teaser

We’re launching the final Squirky book later this month at the Asian Festival of Children’s Content (more details to come soon) and we’re so glad (yet sentimental) that this series is coming to an end.

Here are six things to look forward to in this book:

1. Quentin (aka Red Commander) meeting Squirky’s Daddy and Mummy back on Earth!
2. A few gorgeous doublespreads illustrated by David (we played around with the layout a little for this last book)!
3. A sneak peek at what Squirky and Emma look like when they are older!
4. Tying up (most of the) loose strings after Book #5!
5. An adoptive parent resource on how to disclose with sensitivity with insights from adoption counsellors.
6. Re-visiting the earlier Squirky books again to see how Squirky has evolved during this awesome space adventure and appreciating the story as a complete tale!

We hope you are just as excited about the last book as we are!