World Book Weak
I write this on Mother’s Day, with a sore throat and a head full of cotton wool (most of us compose our posts in advance: this is not a live broadcast!) I am ILL. I have been awake for much of the past three nights because as soon as I lie down, I cough. The past week has been INTENSE and now I’m paying the price, but I wouldn’t have missed the experience for anything!
The reason for my current condition is school visits: lots of them, all over the place. I have talked to kids from Reception right through to Year Eight, so for the youngest groups I harked back to some of my earliest work, from when I wrote and illustrated picture books. And I realised something: my very first book was published twenty-three years ago! This one, Under The Stairs, is twenty years old this year:
Happy 20th Anniversary, Under The Stairs! If only it were still in print…
The infant school kids were a delight, and made me want to revisit picture books. To paraphrase Dr Seuss: ‘Oh the writings you can write!’ But…argh! Where to fit it all in?!
By Friday I was hurting, but the day brought one of the highlights of the week: going into local primary Campsbourne School, where they take the dressing-up-as-a-book-character very seriously indeed. Or rather, not seriously: I couldn’t help wondering how the teacher who wore a Wild Thing Max onesie was able to teach anything that day. I suspect the one dressed as Gandalf had more gravitas – or perhaps not: she was a woman, after all. Among the kids, I met everyone from Miss Havisham to a Dalek.
The wonderful Karen McCombie is far too modest to mention this, but she’s the reason Campsbourne had no fewer than EIGHT special visitors for WBD – writers, illustrators, storytellers. Karen, you are a star.
I also did a World Book Day interview: you can check it out here.
Phew! What was your highlight of World Book Week? Did you dress up? Did you have a special visitor? Did you buy a book with your £1 WBD token? I hope you discovered something new and wonderful – after all that’s what WBD is all about. Or rather, World Book Week, as it’s become. OK, I’m off for a lie down now…