Knight takes on BBC titles
BBC Publications spent some time looking for the ideal publishing partner to take on their children’s list. They finally decided to settle down with Knight Books and the first BBC/Knight titles came into the shops in October: Johnny Briggs and the Great Razzle Dazzle in the Jackanory series and Clive Doig’s Second Book of Jigsaw Puzzles, a tie-in with the popular Jigsaw programmes now back on screen.
Let’s hope that the new imprint keeps the quality of the old BBC list while managing to make the books more widely available at a more manageable price.
New Badges from Hertfordshire
The ever inventive librarians in Hertfordshire have come up with three super new badges. Orders up to 1000 -11p each plus carriage and VAT. Contact Martin P Dudley, Assistant County Librarian, County Headquarters, Hertford SG13 8EJ. Tel. Hertford 54242, Ext. 5488.
(a) Fox: Black outline, orange body with white muzzle and tip of tail, also ears. Black lettering. White book. White background.
(b) Sheep: White, black outline with grey faces. Lettering orange. Bright green background.
(c) Snake: Black outline and patches, also yellow. Black lettering. White book. Beige Background.
The organisers of the mail order Bookworm Club – E.J. Arnold and Heffers – have launched a new paperback club for the over-twelves. The selection of books in their first Read On! Bulletin is varied and interesting and the presentation, in full colour, is certainly attractive and grownup looking. For details of the scheme contact Read On!, Napier Place, Cumbernauld, Glasgow, G68 ODN.
South East Arts Shows the Way
Lucky you if you live in the south east, South East Arts has introduced a new scheme to help anyone who promotes a literary event which involves a visit from a recognised writer (children’s writers included!).
The Writer in Person scheme ensures that organisers receive up to 70 per cent subsidy towards the fees and expenses of `visiting prose writers’. (Poetry is looked after under another scheme.) This is in effect a comforting guarantee against loss and an encouragement to go ahead and plan. Other regions please take note.
Browse in Comfort
If you live in or near Sevenoaks, St Albans, Birmingham, Nottingham, Leeds or Manchester, the School Library Books Consortium will bring a display of recent titles from the publishers it represents (Faber & Faber, Andre Deutsch, Hamish Hamilton, Wayland and Blandford Press) to your school. The display is for exhibition only – you order through your normal supplier – but SLBC leave a list behind with all the ISBNs. The range is from picture books for infants to secondary fiction and reference books. You can also arrange a display for parents’ evenings. For bookings in those areas until next May, contact Mo Heard or Helen Alexander, 3 Queen Square, London WC1 (Tel. 01-278 6881).
Centre for Children’s Books
The Arts Council has given the National Book League a grant of £15,000 to help set up a reference centre for children’s books at Book House in Wandsworth. As well as the existing reference library (which houses copies of all children’s books published in the current twelve months) it will include the Signal Collection of In Print Poetry for Children and the Hans Christian Andersen Collection belonging to the International Board on Books for Young People. There will also be a comprehensive range of periodicals and information files. The Centre will be run by Beverley Mathias, the NBL’s Children’s Books Officer. Just call in office hours. Newly available from the NBL is The Authors’ and Illustrators’ List (£1.50 inc. postage) which lists over 200 authors, poets and illustrators who will take part in book events.
Children’s Book Week – Bigger and Better
Judging from the number of exhausted but pleased-looking teachers I bumped into in the second week of October, CBW was a success. Over a thousand events around the country and a lot of coverage by the media nationally and locally must mean that there are a lot of children (and adults) who, however briefly, have been made conscious of books, perhaps in quite a new way. Building on that is the difficult bit and where school bookshops with their regular habit-forming presence have a big job to do.
The many who contacted Michelle Oberman about CBW will be interested to know that she has moved from the BMC to take over Children’s Publicity at Hamish Hamilton. So for help with Bogey Bonanzas, Gentleman Jim Read-ins in your local Public Convenience or Ramona Rave-ups in Reception classes – you know who to ask.
Forty years ago Worzel Gummidge by Barbara Euphan Todd appeared in paperback. It was, as it turned out, an historic event: the first of a long line of distinguished Puffins. To celebrate forty years of Puffin publishing a special facsimile edition of Puffin No. 1 is appearing. The original is now a collector’s item – so if you’ve got one hang on to it.