Best Blogger Tips Someone Else's Life Shortlisted for Stockport Schools Book Award! | Katie Dale

Monday, 1 July 2013

Someone Else's Life Shortlisted for Stockport Schools Book Award!

I am so incredibly thrilled to hear that my debut YA novel Someone Else's Life
has been shortlisted for the Stockport Schools Book Award!

Forget BGT, forget The Voice, for me as an author this is where it's at. There are lots of highly prestigious book awards, judged by literary "experts" - famous authors, librarians, booksellers and publishers - but for me, being judged by teen readers is especially important. The books were, after all, written for teens, and consequently, to me at least, your opinion is the most valuable.

I am therefore especially honoured to be chosen as one of the three finalists for Key Stage 4 - though of course it's very little about me, and all to do with the book itself as, much like "The Voice" this is, in a sense, a "blind" competition. Author school visits are discouraged so that the books are judged on their own merits - the plot, the characters, and indeed the "voice" - by the teens they were written for. (And yes, I am imagining you all sitting in big red chairs, with my fingers crossed that you spin round!)

But what's especially special about this book award is that it's not just about reading the books and casting your vote - there's a whole array of exciting, innovative, and interesting activities that readers get involved in before making their decision.

Activity days bring students from different schools to meet, discuss and debate the shortlisted titles, then the favourite activity of the day is when they split into groups to create a group drama about one of the titles. This can be a film trailer, a play, a news report, or even a performance poem or a rap! How I wish I could be a fly on the wall that day! I'd love to see what they come up with!

There is also an art competition for pupils to create an original piece of artwork inspired by one of the short-listed books!

Additionally, each year five schools are invited to a professional recording studio! There they read extracts from the shortlisted titles to give the listener a flavour of all the books in each category, then explain why they personally loved the books and why we should read them.

The final recording and winning artwork are then presented at...

Previous winners - with the Mayor!
The Oscars-style award ceremony! This glitzy evening at the Plaza Theatre is attended by pupils, teachers, parents, publishers, authors and illustrators - and even the Mayor of Stockport!

It's a wonderful, innovative and and exciting competition, and I feel really thrilled and honoured that Someone Else's Life has been chosen to be a part of it this year.  Good luck everyone!!


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