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Talking to the Winner of The Dame Beryl Bainbridge First Time Author Award 2015

Christina GabbitasChristina Gabbitas, you’re quite a wonder-woman!

Not only are you a greatly respected children’s author but also a passionate advocate for encouraging children to write. Tell us a bit about the recent writing competition you ran.

I first began the initiative in 2013. My son was part inspiration for this, as he struggled with dyslexia. He had a poem published in a very uninspiring poetry book at school, that was made available to family members, at an inflated cost of £15.00 per book. The font in the book is very small with poems crammed on many pages. However, it was good for his self esteem to have his work published.

I wanted a brightly coloured illustrated book, that would attract other children to read and ‘have a go’ at writing too. There is a £1.00 donation to Barnardos from the sale of each book.
I am very proud to say, that the Children’s Poetry Book Volume 2, has been awarded The Dame Beryl Bainbridge First Time Author Award 2015

The initiative gained support from the then Education Secretary, Michael Gove. Dr Stephen Fear, Entrepreneur and Ambassador at The British Library has also been a great support, coming on board as a judge for 2015.

After visiting many schools in the UK and United Emirates, we have more fantastic poems for the Volume 3 publication, which will be out in September 2015.


We first met you at The London Book Fair a couple of years ago. Your stand was adorned with beautiful books from your Felicity Fly series. Could you tell us how your primary character came to life and what initially inspired you to put pen to paper? Continue reading Talking to the Winner of The Dame Beryl Bainbridge First Time Author Award 2015