WA Premier's Literary Awards

Well, it’s funny how the world turns.

Last week, through ‘channels’, the opportunity to become a judge for the WA Premier’s Awards – YA and Children’s books – came up.

Just the day before, I had been saying to colleagues and family alike that I was looking forward to 2011 being the year that I would ‘read books for me’. Having been involved in the Aurealis Awards for the past two years, and the CBCA awards for two years before that, I’ve been reading books for awards for the last four and a bit years. I thought I’d had enough.

But – apparently not. After I got wind of the opportunity, I came home and put it to my husband, reminding him of what I had been saying about having some time off from judging. His response? “That’s fantastic! You’ve got to take it!” Which sort of made it a given, as I really didn’t want to pass up this chance to get involved in a whole new arena where books for ‘kids’ are appreciated. (If you’re interested, here is a blog and discussion about someone very famous [who should propbably know better], Martin Amis, disparaging those who write for young people on the BBC program Faulks on Fiction).

Bottom line – I’m rapt to be involved in the world of books written for young people. I think that children’s writers have to work so hard to get the voice of the character right. Working with children on a daily basis does give you a good ear for an authentic voice, and the young readers can pick a ‘wrong’ voice a mile off.

So, here’s to happy reading for all, whether old or young, tall or small. 🙂