Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Longlist: Best New Illustrators

The Big Time for The Big Picture: Best New Illustrators longlist revealed

Booktrust has launched their Big Picture campaign with the search to find the UK’s Best New Illustrators.

Children’s books by the 27 longlisted illustrators were all first published in the UK after 2000. Ten winners will be chosen from the list by the Big Picture Committee and announced by Michael Rosen at Bologna Children’s Book Fair on 31 March 2008.

The ten Best New Illustrators will participate in promotional activity intended to raise the significance and importance of illustration. Such activity includes collaboration with Rough Guides to produce The Rough Guide to Picture Books which will be published April 2008.

The illustrators will be appearing in a range of library, festival and bookshop events and promotions throughout 2008 with the Campaign for Learning and for The Big Draw in October.

The longlist is:
Deborah Allwright
Laura Carlin
Alexis Deacon
Polly Dunbar
Lisa Evans
Shelley Fowles
Emily Gravett
Mini Grey
Laura Hambleton
Oliver Jeffers
Simone Lia
Sam Lloyd
David Lucas
Sarah Massini
Mei Matsuoka
Sam McCullen
Alice Melvin
Gwen Milward
Catherine Rayner
David Roberts
Viviane Schwarz
Joel Stewart
Il Sung Na
Kanako Usui
Vicky White
Thomas Doherty
Mungo M’Cosh

The Big Picture Judging Committee comprises author and illustrator Anthony Browne, Sunday Times journalist Nicolette Jones, Antonia Byatt, director of literature strategy at Arts Council England, and author Malorie Blackman.

The Big Picture Campaign was launched in 2007 as a new initiative aimed at promoting picture books and illustrators. Led by Booktrust in partnership with Bookstart, and supported by a range of children’s publishers, the campaign aims to stimulate confidence in the market for picture books.

Booktrust and its associates seek to build an appreciation of picture books on a number of levels: to encourage new audiences to discover picture books, to support new and emerging illustrators and to celebrate the contribution that picture books can make to a child’s development. It will also look at how picture books are valued as collector’s items and pieces of art in their own right.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Caldecott Medal Winner 2008

The 2008 Caldecott Medal winner is The Invention of Hugo Cabret by Brian Selznick

From an opening shot of the full moon setting over an awakening Paris in 1931, this tale casts a new light on the picture book form. Hugo is a young orphan secretly living in the walls of a train station where he labors to complete a mysterious invention left by his father. In a work of more than 500 pages, the suspenseful text and wordless double-page spreads narrate the tale in turns. Neither words nor pictures alone tell this story, which is filled with cinematic intrigue. Black & white pencil illustrations evoke the flickering images of the silent films to which the book pays homage.

Read more about Brian Selznick in the spring edition of Carousel - he was interviewed by Chris Stephenson during his brief visit to this country in the late autumn.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Write Away Annual Conference 22 May 2008

WRITE AWAY ANNUAL CONFERENCEMore than Information: Engaging Hearts and Minds through Non-fiction Date: 22nd May 2008 9.00 – 4.00
Venue University of London, Institute of Education, Bedford Way, London
Target audience: leading teachers, advance skills teachers, literacy co-ordinators, literacy consultants, primary class teachers, school librarians, school library services

Description: This inspirations conference aims to reinvigorate the teaching of non-fiction reading and writing in primary schools through implementation of a creative curriculum, harnessing the emotions and asserting the value of aesthetic experience. Delegates will have the opportunity to hear leading voices in the field reflect upon current practices as well as presenting ideas for development and change. A key feature of the conference is a programme of workshops co-presented by writers and educators, which will creatively explore different forms of writing as well as the use of film, photography and drama. Children’s work will be on display during the day. Confirmed speakers include Nicolette Jones, Martin Salisbury, Nicola Davies, Vivian French, Prue Goodwin, Nikki Gamble, Richard Platt, Prodeepta Das and Marilyn Brocklehurst.

Themes addressed include:Finding a voice: children writing non-fictionPhotography – encouraging reflection and questioningNon-fiction filmDrama: creating a need to knowFresh approaches to biographyIllustrating non-fictionWar and picturebooksThe outdoor classroom as a site for non-fiction writingSelecting non-fiction for the library and classroomNon-fiction writing – an affective approach

The conference bookshop will be provided by Marilyn Brocklehurst’s and the amazing Norfolk Children’s Book Centre. Earlybird booking on or before 28th February 2008 £90 After the 28th February £125 10 places reserved for student teachers will be allocated by prize draw.

Further information and to register interest e-mail info@writeaway.org.uk

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Launch Year of Reading 2008

At a Downing Street launch for the National Year of Reading on Tuesday 8 January, Prime Minister Gordon Brown declared literacy "one of the best anti-poverty, deprivation and crime policies we can think of". The event saw Brown lay out his ambitions for a year which would "make thousands who can't read able to read, and get thousands of those who can read to read more", leaving a lasting legacy of readers in the country.Co-hosted by Ed Balls, Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families, the event was attended by librarians, reading champions, authors Tony Parsons, Michael Morpurgo, Anthony Horowitz and Sophie Kinsella, and Richard Madeley and Amanda Ross, presenter and producer of Channel 4's "Richard and Judy".Speaking to The Bookseller, Balls said that publishers should encourage their authors to get involved in events to promote excitement around reading, while bookshops could contribute by creating "fun places to go". He called for all employers, schools, libraries, colleges and local authorities to get involved by signing up to the National Year of Reading website at www.yearofreading.org.uk.

Thursday, January 03, 2008

Happy New Year

Apologies for the lack of news - moving house and sorting out the computer and broadband and then Christmas took over, not to mention unpacking books and putting up bookshelves. Normal service should be resumed with a bit of luck! enid