Sunday 17 January 2010

PSnarkiversary: Sandy Fussell (Samurai Kids)

Sandy Fussell is an Australian author that I told almost immediately about my journey to Japan as she's written the successful Samurai Kids series. Some of the titles see her ragtag group of kids training in Japan so I knew she'd be interested that I was going to live there.

I was almost there for the birth. I only just missed it but immediately recognised a star had been born. A year has since passed and it’s time to celebrate. Happy first birthday Persnickety Snark and congratulations Adele, you should be very proud of all you have achieved.

I’ve always believed the best way to learn something new is to look around and see who is already doing it really well. Why reinvent the wheel? Or the blog? So when I decided to begin blogging I searched the blogosphere and found the fledgling Persnickety Snark web site. I was impressed - the reviews were high quality and refreshingly honest - PS was not afraid to point out flaws, problems or provide personal opinion. PS knew how to network and lively conversations and discussion were happening in the comments. The fans were already flocking and the visitor counter was clicking over at top speed.

I was in awe of the frequency of the blog posts. And still am. This was a blog site that was getting it right from the beginning. I didn’t hesitate to approach Persnickety Snark and wangle myself a review, interview and guest blog post. I knew it was primarily a young adult related site and I was a middle grade author but I crossed my fingers and hoped that being a relatively new blog, I might just sneak my way in. Some parties are worth gate-crashing!
It was an unexpected bonus to find PS was a primary school teacher in another life and I received some wonderful feedback about the kids who argued over who would read my books next.

Persnickety Snark opened my eyes to the world of young adult literature. It was a genre I had somehow largely overlooked. Purely by accident. I was reading adult titles for pleasure and middle grade fiction for pleasure and professional development. I just hadn’t got around to anything else. PS made sure I did and I have a number of new favourites on my bookshelf as a direct result.
I particularly like to read the interviews. Over the last twelve months the blog posts have become a who’s who in the world of YA.

People often ask me: what’s the point in blogging? It’s fun. It’s a great way to share your interests. It’s a wonderful way to meet people. That’s the answer I give and then I point them in the direction Persnickety Snark - to go have a look and see for themselves.

Sandy was a big support early on when I voiced my desire to write. She wrote me an email that I still have and read time to time that spoke of her belief in my ability. Sandy's an exceedingly generous person and I am extremely grateful she has written this guest post. You can check out her website here.

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