Loves going out and about, drinking coffee, eating chocolate, and writing about her adventures!
Published July 28th 2020
Meet the award-winning author, adventurer and great thinker
Once upon a time, Australian Ian Trevaskis was at a dinner party with friends. He was living and working as a teacher in Colorado at the time. During the dinner party, one of his friends suggested that they go and paint the town red afterwards. This got Ian thinking: Why would someone want to paint a town red? He thought some more, and after he finished thinking, he came up with a beautiful story of a tiny fishing village near the edge of the world where nobody smiled. The story is called Edge of the World.
Another time, Ian was watching his chickens pecking around in his backyard. This got him thinking again. As a result of his wondering, he wrote another book, Delilah's Dream, about a chicken who dreams of escaping her humdrum life and going on some wild adventures.
During his lifetime, Ian has thought a lot. And all that thinking has made him write some of the most incredible stories for children. This is Ian Trevaskis, award-winning author, educator, adventurer, and great thinker.
A little bit about Ian Ian was born and raised in Geelong, Victoria. When he was a young boy, he loved reading Enid Blyton's Famous Five and Secret Seven series. Blyton inspired in Ian a love of adventure stories. "I have always enjoyed 'making stuff up' and playing the "what if" game that many writers use to create their stories," he tells me.
When he grew up, Ian went to Teachers' College. He taught in and around Geelong for many years before moving to the tiny town of Tallangatta in north-east Victoria with his wife and their four young children. It was while he was teaching at Tallangatta when two very significant events happened. As the teacher-librarian, he organised a series of writing workshops for the children with visiting authors and illustrators. After picking the brains of some of the authors, including the late Michael Dugan and Melbourne illustrator, Anne James, Ian decided to have a go at writing for publication himself. Following the author and illustrator visits, he submitted a picture storybook to twenty publishers. Unfortunately, they didn't give his book the go-ahead.
Undeterred, Ian wrote another story, Quincy, based on his son's fear of dogs. This time, the big children's book publisher Ashton Scholastic accepted it for publication, and Quincy went on to win a Notable Book Award by the Children's Book Council of Australia.
The second significant event that happened during Ian's time at Tallangatta Primary School was that he was awarded two International Teaching Fellowships. He moved to Oregon in the United States to teach in 1991 and he also went to Colorado in 2005. It was during his time in Colorado when a dinner party with friends inspired him to write his children's book, Edge of the World.
Other books by Ian Following the success of Quincy, Ian then wrote two other picture books, The Postman's Race and Gumboots. Gumboots also went on to win a Notable Award from the Children's Book Council of Australia. Ian has written many more picture story books, and he has also written novels for children and young adults including Hopscotch Medusa Stone and its sequel, Hopscotch Golden Scarab,as well as the fantastic Towers of Zordran, a fast-paced adventrue story about two parallel worlds.
Ian will be releasing his latest young adult novel, Of Boys and Boats, in September. Published by Ford Street Publishing, Of Boys and Boats is, as Ian says, "based on childhood events and memories of growing up in Geelong in the 1950s. In some ways it's part biography and the rest is pure fiction. The character Heinrich is based on a classmate who had come to Australia post WW2 and Percy is based on another classmate who contracted polio.",p.Of Boys and Boats is set in 1956 during the Melbourne Olympics. "It's a fast-paced and at times humorous story about the power of friendship," Ian explains. "Writing the book meant I had to research and learn about boat building as the character Jack and his mates discover a half-finished sail boat in the backyard shed of WW1 veteran, 'Mad' Mick Metcalf and set out to finish it. The book was written with the assistance of a May Gibbs Creative Time Fellowship for which I am eternally grateful."
Ian the adventurer When he's not busy writing his books, Ian is a keen bushwalker, (he's president of the Borer Bushwalking Club), and he enjoys remote, multi-day hikes in the nearby mountains. "I'm also a back country skier and weekend cyclist," Ian tells me. "For the past ten years, my wife and I have travelled overseas to complete some long distance walks in the Japan, UK, Scotland, Ireland, and Europe. Unfortunately, our plans to walk in Portugal later this year have had to be cancelled. Hopefully, we'll get there in 2021!"
Connect with Ian Ian loves to connect with his readers. You can visit his website here.
Ian is also available for Author Visits and Workshops at schools and libraries. Please visit the Creative Net Speakers' Agency website to find out more. Of Boys and Boats will be available in most bookstores in September. You can also pre-order your copy via Ford Street Publishing or email Ian at email@example.com.
What a fascinating story Belladonna. If I was 65 years younger I would buy his books. I too loved Enid Blyton's Famous Five books and re-read some of them just a couple of years ago and still enjoyed them. Maybe .... Neil.