A competition to find talented young authors who can write a book in the style of Enid Blyton has been launched to mark the 75th anniversary of The Famous Five novels.
In celebration of this anniversary year, Hodder Children’s Books, a part of the Hachette Children’s Group, is re-releasing all 21 original novels with a contemporary look. As brand owner of Enid Blyton Entertainment, the Group has also teamed up with Microsoft to hand the winners of their contest a special Famous Five cover for their story, as well as thousands-of-pounds-worth of prizes.
Children in Year 4 and Primary 5 classes (aged eight and nine) across Great Britain are being invited to write a story of between 500 and 800 words in the style of The Famous Five books, focusing on an exciting location or place of local interest. They must also adopt the same five-step structure that Blyton used: Set up, journey, adventure, resolution, return home.
The budding authors will then have to make their creations interactive by using Microsoft’s Sway program, which will allow them to insert text, pictures, videos, animations and even their own voice to help tell the story.
Lucy Upton, Group Marketing Director for Hachette Children’s Group, said: “Enid Blyton was a progressive teacher and educator, who was passionate about literacy, so we are delighted to partner with Microsoft on this exciting story writing competition to celebrate the 75th anniversary of one of her best-loved series, The Famous Five.”
The class that submits the most compelling and well-written story that reflects Blyton’s style, and shows this creatively using Sway, will win:
– A Famous Five book for every child in the school
– A copy of every Enid Blyton book that Hodder Children’s Books has published for the school library
– Five Surface Pro 4s for the class
– A Surface Pro 4 for their teacher
– A hamper of fun games, treats and T-shirts
– A cover illustration designed by Laura Ellen Anderson, who created the artwork for the contemporary Famous Five books
– Certificates for all the students in the class
Ian Fordham, Director of Education at Microsoft, said: “Microsoft is delighted to be teaming up with Enid Blyton Entertainment to encourage the next generation of storytellers. Blyton’s books are known and loved by children and adults across the world, and we hope they inspire young people to tell some amazing tales of their own. Using the creative power of one of our products, Sway, they can bring those stories to life in the digital world and have their own unique adventure that they can keep and treasure for the rest of their lives.”
Blyton is one of the world’s best-selling children’s authors, selling in excess of 500 million copies in more than 40 languages. In the UK she sells more than two books a minute, and many of them have been adapted into films and TV series.
The new-look Famous Five books will be released in May.
For more information, or to enter the competition, please visit education.microsoft.com/famousfivesway
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