StoryArts Writers Club – Term 3 2018

where inspiration, imagination and creativity flow

Shadytree Books is passionate about inspiring budding young authors and artists to grow and develop their gifts and talents.

During the school terms and holiday periods, we provide opportunities for kid creatives to participate in StoryArts for Kids, small group workshops, that ignite, engage and grow confidence in the areas of creative writing and art.

Saturday Morning Dates ~ 9 am till 11 am

Session Details


Do you enjoy using your imagination to help you write stories but there never seems to be enough time in class to get the chance to do so? Do you have a vivid imagination and would like to learn how to create fantasy adventures for your characters? If you enjoy reading fantasies, there’s a good chance you might like to have a go and write one for yourself. Wouldn’t you like to take yourself on an imaginative journey, full of adventure, just like JK Rowling and Emily Rhodda have done in the past?

This term, for seven weeks, you have the opportunity to take up the sword (that is, your pen or pencil), and discover keys to unlock secret chambers to help you navigate your journey in the creative writing process. You will get a chance to create and develop your own hero’s journey week by week, by firstly, brainstorming and constructing your unique fantasy world, exactly how you imagine it, followed by more brainstorming and creating distinguishable characters, including your hero. You’ll discover your pathway of story by learning to plot and plan your narrative from start to finish and hopefully have a wonderful adventure in the process.

Quest stories are full of action, problematic situations and transformation, and our heroes always inspire us to be our best. There is a hero in all of us just waiting to be released. Creating a quest story gives you an opportunity to shine. Quest stories are packed with power and skills.

The StoryArts Writers Club is open to young writers in Years 3-6. (If there are places available, this course may be open to younger or older children who are keen as mustard to join in). Contact to find out more).

Group sizes are limited to allow for plenty of interaction and the opportunity to workshop ideas and share with other participants in a safe and secure environment.

Plenty of time is allocated for interaction and opportunity to work on stories during each two-hour session, however, depending on each participant’s effort, a small amount of take-home work may be required to complete their stories.

Shadytree Books’ private garage studio offers the ideal setting for young writers to spend time immersed in creative activities, extending to the garden, the bush and back to the studio, where writers will enjoy a place to play in their imaginative world.

Activities include writing exercises, thinking games and some mindfulness practice to help stimulate and inspire creative flow. Shadytree Books’ home is set on two and a half acres of beautiful gardens and natural bush and is the perfect place for young writers and artists to create.

Students are encouraged to submit their writing for feedback.

Program Outline

Week 1: The Nuts and Bolts of World Building

We will look at work by well-known authors who write fantasies and examine the ingredients that make up this genre. You will look for and collect pictures that inspire, go on a bush and garden walk to brainstorm for ideas to help you create your fantasy setting. Along the way, you will be thinking about who lives in your fantasy setting. Will there be unicorns, fairies or dragons, or something else? You’ll develop lists of flora and fauna as well as collect other ideas for your story at this stage. By the end of the two-hour session, the objective is for you to have a map drawn of your setting; full of essential design elements to help you develop a sense of place. You will think about the audience you are writing for as well as possible word counts. You will receive a mini lesson on show don’t tell.

Week 2: The Plot Thickens

Last session you developed your setting and have had this past week to think and tweak any nagging issues. This week you will work on creating a plot summary. This is where you brainstorm for complications within your story. Something needs to happen that disrupts the everyday life in your fantasy setting. What could possibly go wrong? You’ll explore a number of possible plot ideas, in addition to your own ideas. A decision must be made this session on which direction your story will take. You will also explore possible endings and try to brain storm twists that will surprise your readers.

Week 3: The Who’s Who & Sizzling Starts

Now that your setting and plot is organised, the next step is to choose your main hero (protagonist) of your fantasy adventure. This week’s session will be spent developing all your characters and profiling them. You will start to plot a series of obstacles for your hero’s journey and design a antagonist for your hero; someone who disrupts and antagonises your main character. You will also bring the elements of your story together. If you are writing to a word count or not, how many words will you dedicate to your beginning, middle, end and resolution? You’ll practice writing a cracking start. How will you hook your reader to read on? You will explore several ways to catch your reader’s attention and choose a writing device to get your story sizzling?

Week 5: The Journey

This week will be devoted to continuing your story until you are finished. You will refer to your plot summary to help you check you have included and covered everything you wanted in your story. You will receive a mini lesson on devices you can use to make your writing more effective. You will be working on the closing stages of your story. Come prepared to read and share. Depending on numbers in the group, one half of the group will read out their stories for feedback from peers this week and the next group will participate next week. You will learn how to offer feedback to your peers and how to explain why you think something is good or not working. This week you will be thinking and answering questions that require deeper order thinking.

Week 6: Edits for Credits

The second group will read their stories out for feedback, then all writers will read through their stories and check they are structurally sound and that the overall ‘bigger picture’ works. You will make any changes necessary to improve your story. Then you will learn how to edit and proofread your story using symbols. You will put your wizard hats on to search and find spelling errors and grammatical problems.

Week 7: Polished and Final Drafts

Now that your editing is finalised and you are happy with your story, you can write out or type a good copy. You are also encouraged to illustrate your story if you would like to. You will also complete an author page and if time allows, create a blurb for your story.


At the conclusion of this program, you have to opportunity to publish your story as a bound hardcover book. Full details can be found at The Children’s Publishing Company here:


What will you learn

  • How to plot a quest style narrative in order to create suspense and action. You’ll create an original setting, plan your rising action and weave plot elements together to create a believable ending.
  • You will be learn new vocabulary related to fantasy genres
  • You will be introduced to literary devices to help create imagery and figurative language
  • You will learn to brainstorm and create mind mapping skills to help organise your thoughts and ideas.

What you will get

  • The opportunity to work with a small group of like-minded creatives who you will be able to share and discuss story lines and ideas
  • Time … and guidance to hatch an idea for a quest style narrative and watch it grow from start to finish
  • A Quest planner
  • 7 x 120 minutes creative writing workshops presented by Creative Coach & children’s author, Debbie Smith of Shadytree Books.
  • In our last session we will invite parents to come and celebrate our writing endeavours. This will be an opportunity for you to showcase your story and share about the things you have learnt during the program.
Time Detail
8.30-8.50 am Registration
8.50-8.59 am Bathroom stop
9.00-9:45 am Session A – Writing
9.45-10:00 am Morning Tea
10.00-10.45 am Session B Writing
10:45-11:00 Reflection & feedback
11.00 am Collection time

What to bring

  • Pencil case with all your favourite pencils, pens, erasers, sharpener and textas
  • Your favourite notebook or writing journal (a new  A4 exercise book would be ideal)
  • Your nut-free morning tea, water bottle, sunblock, hat
  • Bring along your imagination, your smile and great attitude and get ready to learn something new

What is provided

  • 7 x 120 minutes creative writing workshops presented by Creative Coach & children’s author, Debbie Smith, of Shadytree Books and the opportunity to work with a small group of like-minded creatives who you will be able to share and discuss story lines and ideas each week
  • Time … and guidance to hatch an idea for a quest style narrative and watch it grow from start to finish. In this Saturday morning program each session will flow on from the previous week so that by the end of the seven weeks, you will have created a well constructed quest-style story to share with your family and friends
  • A Quest planner
  • In our last session we will invite parents to come and celebrate our writing endeavours. This will be an opportunity for you to showcase your story and share about the things you have learnt during the program.

Appropriate for

If you’re in Years 3 – 6 and love creative writing – then this program is for you! Come along and be prepared to have lots of fun along the way.

Cost of Course: $280

(all extra materials supplied by Shadytree Books

Please note:

  • a minimum number of students is required for this course to go ahead
  • limited spaces available


Cancellation & Refund Policy

Shadytree Books is unable to give refunds for missed sessions. If for some reason, your child is unable to attend the planned session, please email creative coach, here or


Terms & Conditions

Parents enrolling their child in this program must agree to the following terms and conditions:

  • In an emergency, if medical assistance is needed for my child, I give my permission for Shadytree Books’ staff to take whatever steps are necessary.
  • Please complete the registration form and booking form to secure your child’s place.
  • By participating in this course you are acknowledging that any photographs and videos taken during this course may be used for promotional purposes.

Workshop Teacher | Debbie Smith

Our creative coach and presenter, Debbie Smith, is an author of children’s short stories, a number of them published in anthologies, poetry and a creator of children’s picture books. Her first illustrated picture book is on the road to publication and coming soon. She also writes middle grade novels. Debbie is a registered and very experienced Primary and Primary Specialist Extension teacher who holds a current Blue Card and Public Liability. She is passionate about kids and their writing and love of books. Your child is ensured one-on-one time during our workshops due to groups being kept small.

Find out more

Enrol now


What are you waiting for?

You must register to be a part of this fun program.

Registration Form


Secure your child’s spot by purchasing your workshop now. Our 7 x 2 hour StoryArts course is $280.

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Please note: Our property is situated in the beautiful and serene suburb of Cooroibah, less than 10 mins from Tewantin. Because the property is privately owned, the address will be supplied upon your registration and purchase of the course. There is a gorgeous marina in Tewantin that offers boutique coffee cafes with ambient views to relax in while your child spends a valuable time learning the craft of creative writing.

We hope to see you.

Previous Workshops In Action