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Sharon Holt

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Last updated by Anne Kenneally 

Sharon Holt

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Sharon Holt has written books in English and Māori for children of all ages. Publication of her Skipper stories in the Ready to Read series gave her the encouragement to write full-time and, in 2007, she was a finalist in the NZ Post Book Awards for Children and Young Adults. She researched and wrote two books in Scholastic’s My Story series, and has also had two picture books published by Walker Books.

Sharon’s writing career expanded in late 2011 when she published the first two books in her popular Te Reo Singalong series. There are now eight books in the series, with another due in February 2015. Sharon has been a finalist in the Māori Language Awards for the last three years in a row, and was the winner of the print category in 2013. Her Te Reo Singalong books and CDs are favourites with teachers and children because they are so easy to use, even for those who are not confident in their pronunciation of the language.

Sharon spends most of her time writing and visiting classrooms as The Writing Bug, which is the name of her publishing company. She loves talking to students about the writing process and also enjoys sharing her passion for te reo Māori during workshops with teachers. Find out more on Sharon’s website:www.tereosingalong.co.nz

Some tips for creative writing:

* Reading your work out loud is the best form of proofreading. You will discover any errors and hear if your writing is boring or interesting.

* If you are stuck on an idea or sentence, get up and move around. Ideas will flow more easily when you move your body.

* Insert your own real life experiences and emotions into your writing. It’s the best way to connect with your audience, because they will see themselves in your writing and want to read more.

* Think about your senses when you are writing. How did your body feel? Did your skin tingle? Did your stomach turn? Did your knees buckle? What thoughts went through your mind? What background sounds could you hear? Think about the tastes, smells and colours that surrounded the experience.

Recent bibliography:

It’s True: You can make your own Jokes: Allen & Unwin, 2006

The Make your own Joke Book: Allen & Unwin, 2008

My Story: Sabotage!: Scholastic, 2008

My Story: No Survivors: Scholastic, 2009

Your Mother Didn’t Do That!: Walker Books, 2009

Did My Mother Do That?: Walker Books, 2012

Te Reo Singalong books and CDs: The Writing Bug, 2011 – ongoing