posted on September 26th, 2018

Lauren Child: ‘If we don’t take risks and fail, we will never make anything spectacular.’


Lauren Child MBE visited Queen’s University Belfast for the first time in honour of the UK Children’s Laureate for a special BookTrust Northern Ireland event on Friday 21stSeptember 2018.

Perhaps best known for her book series, Charlie and Lola, Child was also joined by children’s book illustrator, Bruce Ingman and Children’s Writing Fellow, Myra Zepf.

The 3 literacy enthusiasts enjoyed a lively discussion on creativity chaired by BBC Radio Ulster presenter, Marie-Lousie Muir.

Speaking at the BookTrust NI event Lauren Child said: “We need to be able to fail in our lives.  If we don’t take risks and fail, we will never make anything spectacular. I also think boredom and staring into space must be allowed.  These spaces are the beginning of the imagination.”

The authors and illustrators discussed the best types of literature to share with children to encourage them to read and the joy that reading and creativity can bring to children’s lives.

Myra Zepf, Northern Ireland Children’s Writing Fellow on inspiring a love of reading: “When trying to inspire a love of reading, those children who don’t want to read can be the most interesting. I hope this event helped shine a spotlight on the challenges of cultivating creativity in children’s lives – something we are arguably more in need of than ever.”

Children’s author and illustrator Bruce Ingman said: “Give a child some paint and a brush and see the pure joy it brings. They let us into their world, how exciting is that? I’ve learned so much from reading and drawing with kids.” 

Liz Canning, Head of BookTrust Northern Ireland, said: “We are delighted Lauren Child made a special visit to Northern Ireland as The Waterstones Children’s Laureate. We hope this BookTrust hosted event helped inspire families and practitioners in Belfast to get reading and get creative!”