Authors Live celebrates with 10th birthday bash

Poet Michael Rosen returned to BBC Scotland to help celebrate 10 years of the popular children’s reading project, Authors Live.

Hosted by BBC Scotland in partnership with Scottish Book Trust, Authors Live – which sees well known writers give readings and advice to school pupils – has now delivered 79 author broadcasts to more than five million pupils since launching in 2010 with Michael’s inaugural talk.

Among the authors who have shared their expertise over the decade are David Walliams, Julia Donaldson, Charlie Higson, Liz Lochhead, Mairi Hedderwick, Julian Clary and Danny Wallace, while schoolchildren attending the much sought-after streamed guest talks have also enjoyed a Roald Dahl Celebration, poetry slams, a Commonwealth Storytelling Relay and celebrating the 20th anniversary of The Gruffalo in Scots and Gaelic.

BBC Radio Scotland’ s Janice Forsyth welcomed Michael, comic artist Tanya Roberts and a live audience of 100 primary pupils from all over Scotland to the BBC studios at Pacific Quay in Glasgow. Also watching the live webcast were thousands of pupils in classrooms across the UK. Everyone saw Michael perform some of his work, illustrated by Tanya Roberts, while birthday messages from authors and schools across Scotland also featured.

Janice Forsyth said: ‘One of the joys of hosting Authors Live is seeing school pupils across the country question top authors face-to-face about their books and poems. It’s a great way of enhancing reading skills and I know that the authors love being quizzed more closely about how and why they write.’

BBC Digital exec producer Anthony Browne added his support: ‘Authors Live has connected millions of Scottish young people with writers from across the world, helping to share the joy that books and reading can bring to our lives.

‘We are delighted to be celebrating 10 years of working with Scottish Book Trust and we’re looking forward to continuing to bring Authors Live to classrooms all across Scotland.’

Scottish Book Trust chief executive officer Marc Lambert said the partnership has achieved a lot over the decade: ‘Over the last 10 years, our successful partnership with BBC Scotland Learning has given every school across the country free and equal access to the very best author, illustrator and poetry events.

‘Authors Live is an essential resource for every teacher and school librarian in Scotland striving to put reading for pleasure at the forefront of their practice and an excellent way of introducing young readers to their next favourite author.’