About The Author
the short story
Join The Wild Club
Brooke Davis is the author and creator of Your Wild Books. Since 2019 she has published 7 books and developed a range of card games and craft supplies that encourage children to have a deeper connection to nature. Her books can be found in more than 300 stores around the world and have sold over 45,000 copies.
Brooke’s books encourage kids aged 3-12 years to use their imagination and get creative using natural materials and items found around the home.
The affordable, plastic-free craft and play ideas in her books encourage more green time and less screen time.
The question driving her is
'How are children going to care for the environment if they spend a decreasing amount of time in nature?'
She hopes that her books will encourage the next generation of nature warriors to protect the Earth.
Prior to publishing her first book, Brooke founded and ran the award-winning outdoor nature play program called Wild Imagination. Over 20,000 children experienced the program and the activities they enjoyed have helped guide the content of her books.
Brooke lives with her family on Peramangk Country in the stunning Adelaide Hills. In her spare time, she enjoys cups of tea with friends, hiking and deciphering bird calls – occasionally all at the same time!
Join more than 10,000 nature lovers and receive updates from Brooke with free downloads to do at home, nature craft inspiration, and new book and product releases.
the long story
how it all began
I started on this wonderful Wild adventure back in 2016, when my eldest child was preparing to start primary school. I noticed that when kids started school, they were spending considerably less time in nature and many were losing touch with the natural environment.
The research showed that the majority of school-aged children are spending more time on screens than time doing physical activity like sports or playing outside.
And I recently discovered a study that said more than half of children who start primary school with a strong connection to nature, lose that connection by the time they become teenagers.
So to combat this lack of nature time, I established a nature play event company called ‘Wild Imagination’.
In the three years Wild Imagination was running, the program saw more than 20,000 kids get stuck into nature the Wild way.
reflecting play from 1980's childhood
I created Wild Imagination because I wanted somewhere for my daughter and other kids like her to go that was more like how I spent my childhood – outside, immersed in self-directed play, a bit grubby and entirely happy.
Calm, content and exhausted in the best kind of way at the end of a full day of outdoor play.
The program included a whole range of amazing open ended play activities; mud play, water play, nature crafts, loose parts play and lots more. It brought me so much joy to see the children experience outdoor play in this way and develop a deeper connection to nature. Best of all, I learned so much about what kids liked, and how they needed very little to create something incredible.
The program aimed to bring more kids into the outdoors and encourage free play in nature. It evolved to include incursions in schools, kindergartens and childcare centres, as well as nature play activations at many large events like Adelaide Fringe, Science Alive, the Caravan and Camping Show and at the Adelaide Zoo.
In 2018 we won the award forBest Program at the City of Adelaide's Sport and Recreation Awards.
It was a hugely successful and well-loved program.
But something else was calling me.
And in 2019 I realised that through books, I could bring nature play to even more children.
the path to publishing
In March 2019, I started the journey to publish a nature play activity book for kids. Self-publishing is similar to developing a product and launching it into the world so I figured I could give it a red hot go!
I found an incredible photographer, Megan Crabb and we got started on the photos within weeks of making the agreement. I feel so privileged to have Megan as my photography partner in this adventure! Her photography skills are exceptional and we share a vision for authentic excellence.
crowdfunding to print
To raise the funds for the first print run, I sought help from our community via a crowdfunding campaign on Kickstarter.
It was, and still is, very important to us to print the books locally and use sustainable materials and processes.
And getting a couple of thousand full colour hardcover books printed in Australia is not a cheap exercise.
After a hugely successful crowdfunding campaign in June 2019, the book titled Your Wild Imagination was released on 1 October 2019. The release coincided with the last major public event I ran and while that made me a little sad, I am thrilled to be working on books full time.
seven books in less than four years
After the success of the first book, the second book in the nature craft series was released in September 2020 called Your Wild Child. Then in 2021, I released three books. First, a guided nature journal in March which was illustrated by Sydney artist Shannon from Typoflora. Then in August came the third book in the nature craft series titled Your Wild Celebration as well as an activity book and two card games, also illustrated by Shannon.
In 2022, all the books underwent a design upgrade and were re-released as second editions with slightly different titles. And at the same time the fourth book in the nature craft series titled Wild Projects for Families was released along with the junior version of our much loved activity book.
This was the year that we began to manufacture our own tools and craft supplies, which included a fire starter, fabric advent calendar and mindful advent calendar cards.
The books have been so well-loved by tens of thousands of families, that there are plans for more books to bring more nature into the lives of children of all ages, and adults, as well.
real crafts made by real kids
It was important for the books to be easy to understand (even without reading the words) and the activities to be fun and achievable.
There’s nothing worse than starting a project and not having the ability to complete it.
While some of the activities in our books might need a little assistance from a grown up, depending on age and ability, all of the activities are achievable by a primary school aged child.
We feel it is super important that our books represent the society which we live in and that children see themselves and their friends reflected within the pages of our books.
This is why we actively seek children for our photoshoots that represent a diverse range of cultures and abilities.
putting the earth first
Traditional kids' craft can use so much plastic, as well as combine materials that cannot be recycled or composted at the end of their use.
Not only was it important that all the craft activities in our books are easily composted or recycled at the end of their use, but that they were affordable.
Most the materials used in our books that are not natural materials, can usually be found around the home or purchased second-hand or relatively inexpensively when new.
Caring for the environment is ingrained in all aspects of the business. All the books are printed locally by Openbook Howden using vegetable-based inks and Australian-made sustainably sourced paper, helping to reduce transport emissions and chemical waste.
Our love for the environment extends to the type of packaging we use. We decided against compostable satchels because not everyone has access to green waste or their own compost bin. So instead we chose to packaging that was 100% recyclable in the curbside recycling bin.
We predominantly use padded paper bags made in Australia from post-consumer newspaper waste. We have a minimal packaging philosophy, but when padding is needed, we use cardboard and paper packaging sent to us by our suppliers. We even use plastic-free packing tape made from kraft paper and water-activated gum adhesive.
While your order won't arrive wrapped in perfect bundles with paper and twine, we feel this is a much better outcome for the environment.
All parcels are also carbon offset and we regularly donate to a range of environmental, ethical and socially responsible causes.
the why behind it all
The reason I write books is the same reason why I started Wild Imagination in 2016 - the voice telling me kids need more nature and play!
Creating books allows me to reach many more children, wherever they might be in geography, ability level or learning journey.
So that’s where the idea began. With a desire to get more kids immersed in the natural environment. To encourage today’s kids to spend their time more like we did when we were young; outside, exploring, creating and learning.
With more green time and less screen time.
Because you can’t love what you don’t know, and you won’t protect something you don’t love.
Whether we have met in person or not, and whether you have come along to an event or bought a book or not, thanks for finding this website and for reading this spiel. Your support means so much. There are many more books to come and I hope you’ll share the adventure with me.