Two WCB students who are avid readers, Callum Kyle (Year 8) and Rebecca Dunville (Year 10) were chosen to accompany their school librarian Miss Tanja Jennings to meet the current Children’s Laureate Malorie Blackman and the Laureate na nÓg Niamh Sharkey at a special talk held in Parliament Buildings on Friday the 21st of March. Arts Council NI, Booktrust NI and Children’s Books Ireland hosted the joint ‘In Conversation’ event, sponsored by Basil McCrea MLA. Marie-Louise Muir of BBC Arts Extra interviewed the Laureates about their role as ambassadors of children’s literature and invited questions from the enthusiastic audience of post primary pupils and school librarians. Rebecca asked Malorie did she stick to a rigid plan when writing or alter it as she progressed while Callum enquired whether she was planning to publish any graphic novel adaptations of her books. Both thoroughly enjoyed the insightful morning which gave them the chance to, in the words of Mr Damian Smyth of the Arts Council, be part of lighting “a solar flare for the cause of the imagination”.

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