Welcome to 'Repton Litfest on the Cloud'
Our first online event featured a fabulous interview with Sophie Draper that can be viewed HERE!
For Sophie's Website, just click HERE
Repton Litfest on the Cloud is a big development challenge for us but we welcome challenges and feel confident that online will add an exciting new dimension to our live festival.
This was followed up with a highly successful appearance by the childrens author Tom Draper to three local schools...
Repton Schools Welcomed Author Tom Palmer
We supported the festivals link to local schools by arranging for the award winning children’s author Tom Palmer to make online visits to Repton Primary School, St Wystan’s School and Repton Preparatory School. Hosted by Rachel Smedley-Wilson and organised Frances Wimbush, the Repton Literary Festival team, enabled children from twenty-five classes to see, listen and ask Tom questions.
“Tom Palmer is a true reading hero and has been responsible for motivating many thousands of young people to get into books” Booktrust
The events were appreciated by all the schools involved.
“Huge thanks to Louise and Repton Literary Festival for making this afternoon possible! I hope you all enjoyed Tom Palmer's talk as much as I did. I thought the kids came up with some brilliant questions and am so pleased that the technology didn't let us down! Thank you also to all the form teachers and staff for all your support with this too.”
'The English Department Repton Preparatory School'
Tom Palmer engaged the children magnetically and prompted a wide range of questions. Here are a few of the questions and answers.
Where is your favourite place? “At home where I am comfortable and happy but I also travel a great deal to research my books in places like France, Czech Republic and Poland for “D-Day Dog” and “After the War”. I am lucky enough to have lots of favourite places but you cannot beat home.”
What inspires you to write? “Reading other authors work but I have also been inspired to write by things like running with my daughter and our spaniel, Finn. Not to forget football which always inspires me – particularly Leeds United.”
What was it like to see your first book in print? “ Huge happiness and joy at seeing my wife’s joy at the achievement – a dream come true.”
Did you always want to be a writer? “Yes, but I felt that it wasn’t something a boy like me could achieve but I persevered and got there in the end.” Tom told the children you must write what you’re passionate about, what you know and love.
What are your top tips for writers? “Make your characters believable by basing them on real life people, animals and relationships. Finn, in D-Day Dog is based on my dog and reading the stories of the children that featured in “After the War” and meeting some of them was a big help.”
What are your favourite books by authors other than yourself? “Wuthering Heights” by Emily Brontë and the works of Rosemary Sutcliff, a children’s author, writing really good historical stories about the Vikings, the Iron Age, Anglo Saxons and so on – I feel sure she must have visited Repton when researching the Vikings.”
Tom showed some artefacts he had collected that help him visualise the scenes in his books - a silk map which had belonged to a spitfire pilot who had crash-landed in France; - a spitfire pilot’s helmet and a pack of WWII airmen’s playing cards, depicting the appearance of different aircraft and how they appear when flying. Most poignantly, Tom has an airman’s RAF bible, inscribed on the fly leaf “with love from Sonny”.
The children involved in today’s visits will receive a personally signed bookplate to put into their favourite Tom Palmer book.
Tom’s latest book is Arctic Star – set in the Winter of 1943. Teenagers Frank, Joseph and Stephen are Royal Navy recruits on their first Arctic Convoy mission at sea during the Second World War.
See Tom's Website here