April 27th, 2011

childhood reading

When I was in Seattle, I had a great time going through some old family photo albums and taking quick snapshots of some of them. I noticed a couple themes that emerged. One of them was books; there were loads of photos of people reading to my sister and me (and looking at photo albums). I'm certain that had loads to do with me being an obsessive reader as a kid and teenager, and why I'm making books today. Funnily enough, my sister didn't like reading for a long time, until she discovered Archie comics. Now she reads even more than I do.

Here's my dad, reading to me in the house where my parents still live. Check out Dad's fab trousers!

I think that giving kids access to books and apps is great, but nothing beats getting read to. I still love it. When Stuart and I first got married, we decided we were going to read books to each other. But maybe I have a bad reading voice, or Stuart wanted to be in charge or something, but it quickly morphed into Stuart reading to me (which actually suits me just fine.)

My grandma reading to my sister and me

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why story centres? - the guardian books podcast

Hey, The Guardian recently mentioned the Make-your-own-Monster Mega-Challenge event that I did at the Just Imagine centre in Chelmsford, Essex with fab friend and writer Steve Cole! There's a good section in it about story centres and the rise of them, (particularly as so many libraries are getting the government axe.. and yes, dear, we're still angry about that). I've been working with two of the story centres lately, Just Imagine and Stratford's Discover centre, both amazing places with loads of opportunities for kids, writers, storytellers, illustrators and more.

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