By Amelia Butterly
20 February 2015
From the section Entertainment
Malorie Blackman, in her role as Children’s Laureate, is launching a new online book festival for teenagers.
“First and foremost I want to highlight the fact that reading is a great deal of fun,” she tells Newsbeat.
Teen Fest takes place on 4 and 5 March as part of World Book Day and will see authors and readers chatting on social media, as well as podcasts and career advice.
Rainbow Rowell, Marcus Sedgwick and Holly Smale are all on the line-up.
The activities will take place on sites including Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and Google Hangout.
“Most of the correspondence I receive now is via Facebook or email from fans who love my books,” says Malorie, who has written many novels for young adults, including Pig Heart Boy, Thief and Hacker.
“Sometimes it’s a bit of a double edged sword but on the whole I love it because it means you have got instant access to your audience and they’ve got access to you.”
Other authors announced for the event include Meg Wolitzer, Darren Shan, E Lockhart and David Leviathan.
Marcus Sedgewick, whose novel The Ghosts of Heaven has been shortlisted for the YA Book Prize 2015, has written one of the special World Book Day novels.
He sees Teen Fest – and World Book Day – as an opportunity to reach people who feel that books “aren’t for them” and make the event more inclusive.
“We need to make sure, as always with these things, that it isn’t just a small community that’s talking to itself and promoting to itself,” he says.
“Here’s a chance where every child in the country have this voucher to go and get a book for free.
“In many houses, where there isn’t a lot of money, the chance to be given a book for free is an amazingly wonderful thing.”
Marcus thinks everyone has the potential to enjoy reading.
“It’s my belief that if you don’t like reading, it’s just a question of you haven’t found the right book to read,” he says.
Holly Smale, author of the Geek Girl series of books, agrees that if you keep searching, you’ll find …read more
Source:: BBC Entertainment