A new kid-friendly podcast

There was considerable excitement at the Alphabet Soup office on Wednesday, when we tuned in to a new podcast called One More Page. It’s a fortnightly podcast and features interviews, book reviews of children’s books, the occasional fart joke … and the latest episode (episode 3) also features some of our 2017 Top Reads team members.

Woohoo — famous!

One more page episode 3

Nat Amoore from One More Page talked to Anishka (age 8, QLD), Xavier (age 9, NT), Albie (age 6, NSW), and Matilda (age 11¾, WA) about books, books, and more books.

You can hear their interviews at around the 26:35 mark of the podcast, but we think you’ll want to listen to the whole of episode 3 because the theme is


— and you just can’t beat that theme.

PS One More Page is offering a book pack prize for Episode 3. Check out the details here.

Book reviews by Rebecca

Book review: How to Write Stories by Celia Warren

Do you want to write your own stories but you need a bit of help to get How to Write Stories coverstarted? Or perhaps you want some tips to make your stories even better. How to Write Stories is a very helpful guide for any story writer!

Make sure your story has an attention-grabbing beginning, an entertaining middle and a satisfying ending (so your readers want to read right to the end). There’s also information about what sort of story to write (the ‘genre’), how to gather ideas for your stories, and tips about the setting and characters.

Have you ever had writer’s block? I really liked the use of a ‘never-never’ list to start your creative ideas flowing again – like ‘Never go through the green gate’ and ‘Never touch the red button.’ You decide what happens if someone does what they should never never do, and you’re sure to be off and writing again!

At the back of the book you’ll find a glossary where you can look up any ‘writer’s’ words you might not know.

How to Write Stories is one book in a set of ‘How to … ‘ writing-themed books. Other books in the series include How to Write Letters & Emails, How to Write Reports and How to Write Poems.

We found How to Write Stories at our local library – ask for it at your closest library or school library. Then get writing, and enter our current competition, or send your story to us and it might be published in Alphabet Soup magazine!

How to Write Stories by Celia Warren, QED Publishing, London, ISBN 978 1 84538 740 2

This book was selected for review from the Editor’s own collection.

24 May: Kids Day Out


Just another quick plug for the new children’s library (aka The Place) at the State Library of WA. The Place will be launched on Sunday 24 May (from 10am until 3pm). Events are FREE! Here are some details:

CELEBRITY STORYTIMES at 10.30 am, 11.30 am, 12.30 pm and 1.30 pm in the Family Reading Centre

SNEAK PEEK TOUR OF THE LIBRARY (Surprises on every floor – the Library’s smelliest book, Treasures from the past, and more!)

MUSIC SESSIONS ON THE SECOND FLOOR at 11 am, 12 noon, 1 pm and 2 pm

DIGITAL STORIES online all day!

TOTEM BOOK SCULPTURE (How many have you read?)



BALLOONS to take home!

Then from 24 May – 19 July 2009: MY FAVOURITE CHILDREN’S BOOK Do you know what Rove’s favourite book is? What about the Prime Minister’s? Take a booklist home!

Refer to the LISWA Website for further updates:

See you there!

Book reviews by Rebecca

Pancakes and Painted Eggs (Jean Chapman)

Pancakes and Painted Eggs
Pancakes and Painted Eggs

This book is an old favourite of mine. It may not be in print now (correct me if I’m wrong, and I’d love to be wrong), but still seems to be available from many libraries and you could try finding second-hand copies through Amazon (or perhaps ebay).

Pancakes and Painted Eggs is a book for Lent and the Easter Season. It has stories, poems, songs (even sheet music, arranged by Margaret Moore), explanations of customs and festivals from a variety of cultures, recipes, craft activities, and fun illustrations by Kilmeny Niland. There’s something for everyone!

So get yourself down to your local library!

This book was selected for review from the Editor’s own collection.

Donate books to schools affected by bushfires

This is taken from the Community page on the Borders website:

Help Borders raise $200,000 for the Red Cross Victorian Bushfire Appeal. Bring in your second hand good quality books or purchase a new book to donate.

Borders will match the retail price of all donated books up to $200,000, which will go directly to the Red Cross Victorian Bushfire Appeal.

Borders will donate all books to schools and libraries in fire affected communities.

A dedicated area for book donations will be provided in store from Monday 23rd February 2009.


Help create a book sculpture at the State Library of WA!

Have you heard that the State Library of WA has been building a children’s library on their mezzanine level? It’s true! And over the school holidays, children can help create a book sculpture for this new area with artist-in-residence, Graham Hay. For more information, go to where they also advertise other family activities over the summer break.


Libraries and geography lessons

As part of our promotion and marketing, we are sending a free copy of the magazine to most public libraries in Western Australia. So this week the printer is working overtime churning out address labels and we’re buying up big at Officeworks on envelopes … and labels.

The whole label printing-and-sticking exercise has also exposed the shocking ignorance of the Alphabet Soup office when it comes to the names of towns in Western Australia. For example – there was general consensus that none of us had heard of Grass Patch. (Apologies if you live in Grass Patch. If it’s any consolation we all thought it was a fabulous name for a town and just like something out of a book.)

So if you live in Grass Patch and would like to preview a copy of the magazine, next week you can ask your librarian about Alphabet Soup. 🙂