We want knowledge

I did a talk at Ashburton Intermediate today – told the children a story about how a book about rocks changed someone’s life. After the talk these four boys came sprinting into the library asking where the books on rocks … Read More

Flat Bush Forever

Spent the morning at Flat Bush School with inspirational alumni Willie Maea, Samson Vaotuua, Greg Va’afusuaga, Jay Paniani and Dr Julienne Faletau as they returned to visit their old school. The Writers Group of children interviewed these tuakana for a … Read More

Taku Toi Kahurangi

“When I have enough money saved and have created a name for myself, I would love to start my travels. First I would like to go to Paris and visit sights like the Eiffel Tower, try French food and also … Read More

Ākina – Go Hard!

I’ve spent the last two days in Napier and Hastings encouraging young people to believe in themselves and find out who they are  through reading. Finished at Hastings Boys’ High School whose motto is Ākina. This motto was given to … Read More

Te Ara a Hape – Te Ahiwaru

On Thursday I was blessed to participate in a rangatahi programme for the uri of Te Ahiwaru – Hapuu of Ihumaatao called Te Ara a Hape. This Kaupapa was designed to support rangatahi and whānau to re-engage with education and … Read More

Star Dreaming

Awesome day today launching our book Star Dreaming – a book inspired by the stars of Matariki, written and illustrated by children at Sylvia Park School. These young writers share stories of family, of special places, of proud moments, of … Read More

Ask the Elders

First day of our project working with Tokelau youth and their families to make some bilingual Tokelau children’s books 🇹🇰 So Tokelau children can go into a library and find books they can see themselves in, written by Tokelau writers, … Read More

Te Totara Primary

Awesome time sharing stories about the power of reading with children at Te Totara Primary School. Question of the day: “What’s the downside of being a writer?” Answer: Hustling to make a steady income! “I loved your presentation, David. It … Read More

From the 275!

I did a zoom sharing talk as part of the Reading Oceania conference recently. Whenever I’m blessed to do presentations I’m always proud to represent my home town Māngere, and let everyone know about the village that raised me.

TRT at Waitakere College

Today I received an awesome message from David Ackery, librarian at Waitakere College. “I finally got around to getting a copy of The Reading Tribe. What a great book! So unique, and so NZ. And so much material there for … Read More

Brainstorming Tuvalu children’s books

Today we’re back to work making Tuvalu children’s books with Sagaa Malua, Alamai Sioni and the master Chad Robertson. I love this work because we know it makes a massive difference for children to see themselves represented in literature.

Ōtara Heroes

When an older generation of Ōtara legends come around to inspire a younger generation. That’s what you call tuakana-teina in action. Speaking words of life into young spirits today at Dawson Primary where I’m working with these children to write … Read More

Believe Become Inspire

Today Kedgley Intermediate School launched the book we made together celebrating their incredible alumni. A supercity mayor, Black Ferns captain, successful businesswomen, entrepreneurs, writers, MMT captain, world class singers and more have come from this wonderful South Auckland school.

Matariki at St Francis

This term I’m working with some inspiring children and their whānau at St Francis Catholic School in Auckland. We’re making a book about Matariki – how it inspires them in their lives.

Read to Succeed

I always love sharing stories with young people about how reading can literally save and change your life. Today I was at Wesley College – blessed and inspired by these talented young people.

Pasifika Superheroes

I’ve just released 4 new books in the Pasifika Superheroes bilingual series: 2 Samoan and 2 Tongan. These books come with narration as well so the children can listen to them being read in Samoan, Tongan and English. Art by … Read More

Freestyle: The Israel Adesanya Story

I’m working on a children’s book about UFC champion Israel Adesanya. The illustrator is the amazing Ant Sang and you can see more of Ant’s work here: http://www.antsang.co.nz/. This is a sneak peek from the drafting stage, can’t wait to … Read More

Aroha for Ukraine

I’m working with the team at Mahi for Ukraine to make a book of encouraging messages and pictures by Kiwi young people for the Ukrainian young people who will soon be arriving in NZ with their families, fleeing the attacks … Read More

Storylines Notable Books Award – The Reading Tribe

The Reading Tribe has won a Storylines Notable Books Award. Massive thank you to designers Misterwolf for generously doing the design for free because they believe in encouraging young people to read. Thank you Storylines! Awards are important for independent … Read More

Kāinga Pukapuka

Would you like some free books with that bread and milk? During the COVID lockdown schools and libraries were closed and many of our young people lost access to books. I reached out to some of the Auckland Local Boards … Read More

In My DNA

This year I was blessed to do a project with young people from Pacific Advance Secondary School in Auckland. I helped them to share stories of the people, cultures and places that make them who they are, bring them joy … Read More

Ko Au Ko e Tama Niue

I’ve been working with an awesome group of Niue young people and their families at Favona Primary School in Māngere. This week we launched a collection of their writing in Vagahau Niue and English to celebrate Niue Language Week. I … Read More

Tuvalu Toku Atufenua Pele

In term 3 I worked with children and families from the wonderful Auckland Tuvalu Community Trust to make a bilingual book celebrating Tuvalu people, history and culture. We launched the book during Tuvalu Language Week. It’s so cool that children … Read More

Our Normal

Our Normal is a series of intimate and honest conversations with some of New Zealand’s most talented Paralympians. The athletes tell us about the books, food, music, people, places and taonga they love. They share the challenges they face living with … Read More

Standing In My Own Shoes

To celebrate Olympics year I asked Kiwi Olympians and Paralympians to write letters to young people sharing what they learned about “success” from their experiences in Tokyo. Then I got each letter illustrated by a different Kiwi children’s book illustrator … Read More

The Reading Tribe

The Reading Tribe is a new book I’ve made where I ask some of New Zealand’s most successful people to share the books that have travelled with them through life. UFC champion Israel Adesanya found safety in the school library … Read More

St Francis Catholic School

X-factor Kiwi kids at St Francis School in Pt Chev. These Tongan children are so proud their brother is on the front cover photo of Rise of the To’a. By the way these children are all siblings … 4 sets … Read More

Ngā Tamaiti Rangatira – Children of Chiefs

Ngā Tamaiti Rangatira is a collection of writing by young people from the Tipu Whare program at Panama Road School. I helped these rangatahi share their thoughts about life, their dreams and the special people they admire. Look how proud they are … Read More

Ko Hoku Fonuá

What a blessing to work with these beautiful Tongan children making a book about how proud they are to be Tongan. The book is bilingual (Tongan and English). The stories they’ve written demonstrate their immense pride in being Tongan. You’ll … Read More

Konererio and the Flag Master

Kinaua Ewels is a Kiribati-Kiwi primary school teacher who shared an amazing story about her grandfather, Konererio, with me. He was a ‘Coastwatcher’ during World War II and saved many people’s lives because of his bravery. Kinaua asked if we … Read More

Wāhine Toa

I’ve received a number of emails from librarians over the years asking if I could make some books for girls. I’m so glad I got to make some books featuring inspirational Kiwi women such as Lisa Carrington, Stacey Fluhler (Waaka) … Read More

Cook Islands Legends

“So you want our blessing to publish stories for children? First you have to play me in table tennis. Then you have to listen to me make fun of you with a song.” Thank you Papa Tangatakino – first for … Read More

Rise of the To’a

Today we had another launch for the book, Rise of the To’a, the MMT story. This launch was held for the Tongan community at Lesieli Tonga church in Mangere. It’s been an amazing blessing to be part of this work … Read More

Wellington visit

I spent this week visiting schools in Wellington to encourage young people to read. My main message is that books are so powerful they can change your life, as they did for people like Dr Ben Carson and Steven Adams. … Read More

Tuvalu children’s books

This year Chad Sta-Krucial Robertson and I have been working on an awesome project with the Tuvalu Auckland Community Trust. We made 8 bilingual Tuvaluan children’s books, one representing each island of Tuvalu, and today the books were launched as … Read More

Rise of the To’a

Today ‘Alisi Tatafu and I launched our children’s book Rise of the To’a (the MMT story) online in Tonga. We would have been there if it wasn’t for COVID but there’s still so much to be thankful for, especially learning … Read More

Radio NZ visit

Massive arohas and shout out to Indira Stewart and the team at Radio NZ for hosting our team of Flat Bush student writers and recording them reading their stories. An awesome experience for all of us! #flatbushwriters #readNZ #writingwarriors

Who Stole My Taro?

Today we launch a new book in the bilingual Pasifika Superheroes series: Who Stole My Taro? Taro is one of the most popular foods in the Samoa. You can bake it and eat it with palusami. You can boil it … Read More

Rise of the To’a at MC

Today ‘Alisi Tatafu and I launched our children’s book Rise of the To’a (the MMT story) at Mangere College as part of Tongan Language Week celebrations. The book even had its own cake! Why Mangere College? ‘Alisi is a current … Read More

You are orators

I’m working with young writers at Flatbush School this term and today we had an inspiring visit by Raymond Sagapolutele. Raymond is a professional photographer and an amazing role model for our young Pasifika storytellers. “You are orators and your … Read More

Always back your story!

I’m working with young writers at Flatbush School this term and today we had an inspiring visit by Indira Stewart. Indira is an award winning journalist and an amazing role model for our young Pasifika writers. “Your story is so … Read More

Read to succeed during lockdown!

Hey family if you want some reading material to inspire your kids and keep up their reading levels during the lock down, you could try Reading Warrior eBooks. They’re just $2.95 each during this time and family friendly. How about … Read More

St Mary MacKillop School

Today I was blessed to be invited to St Mary MacKillop School in Mangere as their “Author of the Month.” The student librarians wrote to me asking if I could visit because they want their friends and peers to do … Read More

Sylvia Park School

“Hi David. Just thought I would let you know about a mum who came in this morning to tell me about her son last night.  He normally kind of grunts when she asks him about his day but last night … Read More

Southern Cross Campus

Today I did a writing workshop with students at Southern Cross Campus in Mangere. Here’s what some of the students thought about our time together: “I enjoyed learning the skill of using the newspaper into making a whole interesting story.” … Read More

Yvette Williams book launch

Great day launching my new book about Yvette Williams in two communities: in Howick where Yvettte lived, with her family, and in Otara where Chad Robertson (illustrator) and I live and work, with our families.

Rosalina

Tonight I went to watch Rosalina by the Sau e Siva Creatives at Mangere Arts Centre. The guys adapted the story from a legend in my book, Samoan Heroes. It’s pretty cool seeing the way they took the story from … Read More

Papakura Intermediate: Believe. Strive. Achieve

I visited Papakura Intermediate today and it was so awesome sharing stories with these talented young people, showing them that reading can change people’s lives … even a book about rocks! And then to hear that the kids took books … Read More

Wesley College

Today I visited Wesley College and spoke to the students about dreaming big and how reading helps us discover amazing things about ourselves we never knew before.

Cook Islands visit

I had an incredible week in Raro this week. The Cook Islands Ministry of Education invited me to come and share in their literacy week celebrations. I visited lots of schools on Raro, talking to young people, and being inspired … Read More

Fanene Peter Maivia – Son of Samoa

This week I launched a new book Fanene Peter Maivia: Son of Samoa. It’s the first in a new series called Reading Legends. These are picture biographies of legendary Kiwi and Pasifika heroes.

Wairua

  Today I had an amazing experience at Kelston Boys High School in Auckland. I was asked to speak to two classes of year 13 boys about the awesomeness of reading. I started with my pepeha – “Tuhituhia te kite, … Read More

Reading Chain Challenge

Have you heard of the Ice Bucket Challenge, the Level Up Challenge and the Kiki Challenge? Today I helped Kedgley Intermediate launch the Reading Chain Challenge. Children who sign up for it receive spot prizes along the way and special … Read More

Lata and Clicks

I’m working on a new book in the Pasifika Heroes series – Tokelau Heroes. Today my students performed a play about Lata, a legendary Tokelau hero. It was a show for children and was performed at Vodafone Events Centre in … Read More

Live Talks with Fatima Lui

Cool evening being interviewed by Fatima Lui as one of her “Live Talk” subjects. Check it out here: https://www.facebook.com/livetalksnz/videos/1096004440555461/

Grey Lynn Primary

Today I shared about how reading changes people’s lives with children at Grey Lynn Primary School.

Kids Lit Quiz World Final

  I was invited to attend the World Final of the Kids Lit Quiz today. Canberra Grammar (Australia) won the final. In the evening we had a dinner and I sat with one of the Australian families. The dad went … Read More

Read to Succeed

So awesome today that I got to speak to children at Our Lady Star of the Sea School. This week is the school’s Book Week and they have lots of activities happening to promote reading. That’s a great school man!

Storytelling is powerful

Today I spent a morning at Manurewa High School with Michel Mulipola, talking about the power of storytelling.

May Meet Up

On Thursday I attended an event called the May Meet Up at the Mangere Arts Centre. It was a gathering of artists and people with dreams from Mangere-Otahuhu and was such an inspiring evening.  We heard about these awesome projects that are … Read More

SCJC Heroes

This week I spent time with Year 6 students at Southern Cross Junior Campus in Mangere.  We worked on a project called Pasifika Heroes in Homes, set up by school social worker, Tupou Evans. The children chose heroes from the … Read More

The Eel and Sina

Awesome day today with Jono Soo Choon and the team who came to our school and performed the Samoan legend The Eel and Sina. We hosted the show and had children from Rongomai Primary come up and see the show … Read More

Boys and reading workshop

I spent today at a Boys and Reading workshop at the National Library. It was awesome to see boys inspired by books and to share exciting ideas with like minded friends: Linda, Henry and Dave from Books in Homes and … Read More

Auckland Writers Festival

It was a real blessing to be invited to participate in this year’s Auckland Writers Festival. I took a writing workshop and did two talks. When I taught English at Tangaroa College, I used to bring my students to this … Read More

Storylines Awards 2018

Cook Islands Heroes is the 4th book in the Pasifika Heroes series and the book won a Storylines Notable Books Award today. Awards are important for a self-publishing writer like me because they help people to trust the work. Two other … Read More

Aiming Up with Kieran Read

Today Reading Warrior launched a new book in the Reading Warriors series of biographies. This is the story of the All Blacks captain, Kieran Read. My favourite anecdote from the book comes from when Kieran was in year 12. He … Read More