Anna Ciddor is an inspirational speaker for ages 8-108. Her forthcoming novel A Message Through Time is a standalone companion to her best-selling time-slip adventure The Boy Who Stepped Through Time. Anna’s lively presentations are not only full of audience participation and ‘show and tell’, but she also passes on tips and secrets about how she creates her novels, revealing how much she relies on planning and drafts. As a successful writer-illustrator of fiction, travel, history and fantasy, she shares amazing research stories and makes it exciting and fun to travel behind the scenes to find out about the life of a writer and the making of books. She even includes a few games – such as fortune-telling with a goat! Her presentations work just as well online as live, and her audiences feel eager and empowered to create their own stories.
In 2021 Anna won the Nance Donkin award for children’s literature.
About Anna’s books
Anna has written and illustrated nearly 60 books, several of which have been CBCA Notable Books, shortlisted for numerous other awards, translated into other languages and sold around the world. Anna has also been the recipient of a 2-year grant from the Literature Board of the Australia Council.
Her most popular books include:
Runestone, Wolspell and Stormriders ,the three books of the Viking Magic series, published by Allen and Unwin. These are best-selling historical fantasies set in Viking times and based on intensive research into Viking lifestyle and beliefs.
The Family with Two Front Doors, Allen and Unwin 2016. This book is a based on the childhood of Anna’s grandmother in 1920s Poland – a heart-warming Jewish story that is not about the holocaust. Visit annaciddor.com for a printable colouring page, Teachers Notes and more information about the book.
52 Mondays, Allen and Unwin 2019. This novel is based on Anna’s memories of 1960s Melbourne. Three sisters conjure up hilarious everyday adventures in a time before computer games, internet and mobile phones – a peek into the past that is fun and interesting, but also thought-provoking, as the book touches on what it was like being a Jewish child before Australia became a multi-cultural society.
The Boy Who Stepped Through Time, Allen and Unwin 2021. What happens when a holiday to the south of France turns into a trip back to ancient Roman times? This novel was created after two years of research with an archaeologist. Anna has created a totally believable time-change book that immerses readers in a world filled with excitement, laughter, and amazing (and accurate) historical detail.
A Message Through Time is a standalone companion to her best-selling novel The Boy Who Stepped Through Time. It is an action-packed time-slip adventure that carries stepsiblings Felix and Zoe back to Ancient Roman times – and also, accidentally, drags a Roman girl into the present. This novel features a whole new cast of characters (with some fun cameo reappearances of previous characters).
Find out more
You can find out more about Anna and her books, and view or listen to her media appearances at her website annaciddor.com
(Grade 3 to Year 7)
Mix and match from the following topics for your school:
- The process and importance of planning
- Writing a time change story – the key to unlocking the fun of history
- Stories of incredible detective work, challenges and coincidences behind the research
- Writing drafts, illustrating drafts, editing samples, and research material
- Illustrating tricks
- Professional tips on short story and descriptive writing
- Bloopers and secrets behind writing and illustrating
- Life in ancient Roman times – the interesting bits!
- Working with a collaborator
- How students in schools contributed to shaping the plot
(Also suitable for mixed age groups 8 to Adult)
Uncovering a lost world
With the vivid support of photos, illustrations, research documents and historic artifacts, Anna takes the audience on an exciting journey, reliving the quest she undertook to uncover long-lost secrets of the past and bring it to life for a historical novel.
Tricks of the trade
Anna Ciddor reveals all! Using the actual photos, historic documents, interview and recall techniques that were used to create some of her historic novels, Anna demonstrates the processes of research, writing, illustrating, building characters, and working with an editor. This can develop into a writing workshop.
Anna is based in Melbourne but any of the above presentations are available via Skype.
I was inspired so much when you came in and how you turned family history into an absolutely amazing book! I really hope that one day I can do the same
PLC MelbournePLC MelbourneAnna Ciddor
Your presentation was fascinating and I thought the way you linked the story with the research process and family connection was perfect
Moriah College SydneyMoriah College SydneyAnna Ciddor
I couldn’t allow the moment to pass without letting you know how much I enjoyed your Workshop on Friday. You have such wonderful energy and enthusiasm for your work. It’s contagious. I was so inspired … It was a privilege and a pleasure to spend a couple of hours in your company.
Stonnington Council 'Untitled' Literary Event - 2017Stonnington Council 'Untitled' Literary Event - 2017Anna Ciddor
Anna had the audience locked on to her presentation from start to finish. She unfolded a fascinating story of literary detective work, tracing the lives of her Polish grandmother and her family, and the audience couldn't wait for a formal question-and-answer period at the end – they threw in questions as the session went along, and she handled them brilliantly and honestly.
Williamstown Literary Festival - 2016Williamstown Literary Festival - 2016Anna Ciddor