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CBI Conference 2011 – Dublin

Writing.ie | Guest Bloggers | From the Front Row


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If you love children’s literature, this is one of those festivals that you walk away from, exhilarated. It’s astounding to be able to listen to and chat with such an array of iconic children’s writers in a single weekend – and although there was so much inspiration to be gained, the relaxed atmosphere and excellent organisation (thanks to Mags Walsh Children’s Book Ireland) kept the momentum going. In short, there was never a dull moment.

This year’s programme was simply superb, including husband and wife team John Burningham and Helen Oxenbury, multiple award-winner Derek Landy, and the fabulously funny Philip Ardagh and Louise Rennison. Topics were plentiful including children’s picture books, the art of illustration, tackling difficult topics for teens, children’s reading projects, the importance of collaboration, the influence of libraries and how to keep humour funny.

“What do children want from libraries? List includes live animals, adult-free rooms, candy, flight simulators…” (Tweet from CBI Conference)

The whole weekend was mentally invigorating and visually stunning – just look at the beautiful illustrations & retro feel of this Oxenbury illustration, with colour inspired by textiles and enhanced using computers.

But better still, it revved me up to go and tackle my own manuscript edits with a happy heart.

“My biggest influence is the children that I write for & write with. They’re also my trusted critics.” Aine Ni Ghlinn

Children’s Books Ireland have their own overview here and you can get a real flavour for the weekend (and see plenty more photos) by viewing my Twitter profile (@ERMurray) or searching under the #CBIConference hashtag. And of course, it wouldn’t be complete without Inis Editor David Maybury’s take on things. Enjoy!!

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