Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Katherine Rundell on Writing (and Publishing) for Children

Katherine Rundell became a Prize Fellow at All Souls around the same time she finished the manuscript for her first children's novel, The Girl Savage, which was subsequently published by Faber. Since then, these two seemingly antithetical occupations have existed in parallel. At CLYCC's first session for 2011/12, Kate took us through her thoughts about writing in general and writing children's books in particular. Kate's hilarious, erudite talk challenged the perception that writing children's literature is akin to painting watercolours of cats (an opinion that she has encountered in her time), as she touched on, for example, reading as one of the few private activities allowed to the child, the children's book as an apotropaic against the tawdrier products of children's culture, and the robustness of children's publishing throughout the recession. Her talk was also a practical exploration of the vicissitudes of children's publishing, literary agents, writing schedules, etc—meaning that her talk offered perspectives on children's books both idealistic and pragmatic.

Read more about The Girl Savage here, and stay tuned for Kate's new book, also published by Faber and provisionally entitled Across the Rooftops.

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