Book Award Ceremonies

Posted on by Barbara Mitchelhill

Salford Children's Book Awards 2013

Sometimes an email flies into my In Box which makes me particularly excited.  It will say that I’ve been nominated for a book award.  After reading it twice to make sure I’ve got it right, I stop work, phone friends and family and anyone who will listen.  It’s worth getting excited.  Six thousand children’s books are published every year and this means my book has been chosen out of all of those.  Wonderful! Particularly when an Award Ceremony is involved.

Last month, I went up to Lancashire for the Salford Book Award (for Run Rabbit Run) which was held at the fabulous Lowry Centre.  I hadn’t been to Salford for many years and remembered it from my childhood as a rather run-down place.  Not any more.  The transformation is breath-taking.  There are wonderful buildings (including the BBC’s new studios), canal-side homes and great outdoor spaces. So, as my taxi pulled up outside the Lowry Centre, I was looking forward to great things.

Librarians are my favourite people.  They do so much more than the rest of us know about.  On that day, the librarians organising the event were there looking after the hundreds of children who had come to the award ceremony, offering them a breakfast buffet of bacon butties – so much better than a day in school with double maths.

The authors were taken up to the theatre where the ceremony was to take place.  Now this is a great part of the day because we authors get to meet each other and chat. Usually we’re sitting at home tapping away on our computers. So meeting other authors is a lovely thing to do.

When the ceremony began, the authors had to give a short speech to the audience before two pupils gave a resume of each book.  Then the golden envelope was opened by a pupil and the winner announced.  Gill Lewis’s lovely book, Sky Hawk won this time and she was presented with a Lowry picture.

After meeting the pupils and signing books for the next hour, the authors had a buffet lunch which was so beautiful that it looked like something out of Masterchef!

Time for thanks and goodbyes.  Taxi to the station and home.  Another Book Award.  Another wonderful occasion.

Authors, prize-winning children and officials

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