One of the reasons I love being an author & illustrator is that I get to visit schools and work with pupils in the Arts.
I recently visited Beverley Girl’s High School, and two great things came out of the day. Firstly, I had a really enjoyable talk with the pupils and their teacher, Mrs Cork, about what careers they wanted to get into and how they could go about it: (either by getting an apprenticeship, going freelance or heading to university like I did). Secondly, it really helped me with a new book I’m working on that is aimed at both 12 year old boys and girls.
You see, I was once a 12 year old boy. However, I have never been a 12 year old girl. However, I am currently working on a story book aimed as 12 year olds – think Diary of a Wimpy Kid, but designed to appeal to both genders. For that reason part of the session involved the girls filling in a questionnaire about what they love, hate, hope and fear on a day to day basis. They were really honest and I got some fantastic answers. There were a mixture of deep, playful and insightful remarks; all of which are invaluable to me as a writer.
I promised that I wouldn’t share any one student’s remarks on my blog, but Mrs Cork took some fantastic photos from the morning and I want to share these, as I love the sea of happy faces in these pictures: I had a really great time talking to the group, and it was great to see them so enthusiastic about getting a career in the Visual Arts industry.
Beverley High School is a really great school, and I’m sure the next time I get stuck with one of my female characters in my book I’ll be seeing these chaps again in the future!
Andy’s Favourite bit of the day:
Discovering what gives most teenage girls the most stress and pain in their lives:
Apparently the answer is their eyebrows.