Malorie Blackman, Children’s Laureate, visits Leighton Park School

28 Nov 2013

On Tuesday 12th November, Children’s Laureate and best-selling author Malorie Blackman visited Leighton Park School to talk about her writing and to sign copies of her books. The event was organised by Leighton Park in association with Waterstones’ Reading branch and around 400 students attended including many from Maiden Erlegh, Bulmershe, Highdown and St Joseph’s College.

Malorie Blackman is published by Random House Children’s Publishers and has written over 60 books for children and young adults. Her books include the Noughts and Crosses series of novels (Noughts and Crosses won the ‘Red House FCBG Children’s Book Award’ and was number 61 of the ‘BBC Big Read top 100’), Cloud Busting (winner of the 2004 ‘Smarties Silver Award’), Thief (winner of the ‘Young Telegraph/Fully Booked Award’ 1996) and Hacker (winner of the ‘WH Smiths Children’s Book Award’ and the ‘Young Telegraph/Gimme 5 Award’ for best children’s book of the year 1994). Her latest book Noble Conflict, a war novel, has been shortlisted for the 2014 CILIP Carnegie Medal.

Malorie is a scriptwriting graduate of the National Film and Television School and regularly writes and adapts drama scripts for TV broadcast. Her book Pig-Heart Boy was adapted into a BAFTA winning six part TV serial and shortlisted for the 1998 Carnegie Medal. In 2005, Malorie was honoured with the Eleanor Farjeon Award in recognition of her distinguished contribution to the world of children’s books. In 2008, she was awarded an OBE for her services to Children’s Literature.

The audience was enthralled by Malorie’s talk and there were numerous questions from students covering all manner of subjects from Malorie’s inspiration to her handling of controversy. When asked whether she was ever worried about negative feedback she explained that she had come to think that if a novel wasn’t being criticised ‘she hasn’t done her job properly!’ She enjoys the challenge of tackling sensitive subjects with empathy and cited Pig-Heart Boy (centred on a dying boy) as an example of this as a powerfully emotive subject for the teenage market.

As the Childrens’ Laureate for 2013 – 2015 her aim is ‘more children, reading more’. With a very captive audience today, Malorie Blackman is certainly inspiring this generation and many more. Leighton Park would like to thank her for her visit today and we look forward to following her writing in the future. Find out more about Malorie Blackman at