#WABIAB National Open Competition – We Won!!!

Our WABIAD book

Our WABIAD book

As some of you may recall, earlier this year my writers’ group and I decided to raise some money for The Kids’ Cancer Project at Westmead Children’s Hospital – doing what we most love to do… write. We wrote, illustrated and printed a book for 11-16 year olds entitled Scribbles in the Dark – all in a single day. Read more about that experience here.

The Write-a-Book-in-a-Day challenge was a tough but incredibly rewarding experience for us – especially given the group’s close ties to cancer and/or Westmead Children’s Hospital. We all worked and wrote really well together, so we’ve since decided to write another book as a group and are currently doing just that. Watch this space for details!

So it was a wonderful surprise to wake this morning to an email saying our book had won a prize… In the WABIAD national open category, we had won… BEST BOOK!

We had also won… BEST ILLUSTRATIONS.

We had also raised the most sponsorship of any team nationally. So special thanks go to all our generous sponsors who believed in us.

Wow – I can’t begin to tell you how thrilled we all are about this. Our next step is to approach some publishers to see who wants to help us publish Scribbles in the Dark. Given the judge’s comments about it, I’m sure they’ll soon be knocking down our door, he he 😉 …


Scribbles in the Dark by The Northern Beaches Writers’ Group

This is a lovely little book in its own right, and I believe a publishable story that should be widely read and enjoyed. Set in Winton with a token dinosaur, the main characters are foster brothers who are swept away in an adventure that will forever change their lives. The characters, setting and issue are creatively incorporated in a story which includes a good dose of both fantasy and reality. It balances necessary loss with a satisfying and happy ending, providing an emotionally charged yet ultimately hopeful reading experience. This is a book to be treasured, suitable for children in a hospital setting, and a more general reading audience.

If you’re a publisher interested in helping the Northern Beaches Writers’ Group get Scribbles in the Dark to that wider audience, please just contact me.

In the meantime, please see below for the blurb and thanks to my fellow writers and illustrators for your marvellous writing genius and support during this project – Leah Boonthanom, Fiona Howland-Rose, Tracey Jackson, Tony McFadden, Liz Michell, Mijmark, Zoya Nojin, Kristin Prescott & Kirsten Taylor. We wrote an awesome story:

Fourteen year old Callum has long wondered what happened to his father… Callum has lived with his grandparents above their pub in Australia’s outback since his father disappeared, six years ago. Then the rains came. Along with his foster brother Jake, Callum and his dinosaur sculpture are transported to another world, where questions are answered, and lives changed. Why is Jake scared of the scribbly gumtrees? Who is the mysterious girl? Can they ever return home?

Zena Shapter

I write from a castle in a flying city hidden by a thundercloud. #Ditmar Award-winning author. Movie buff. Traveller. Wine lover. Story nerd. Book Creator & Mentor. Founder & leader of the award-winning Northern Beaches Writers' Group / ZF Kingbolt.


  1. And thank you, Zena, for organising our team! It was an amazing day. I’m thrilled at the results!

  2. Congratulations on the win

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