Our Festival celebrates reading, writing and creativity and is a collaborative project, co-ordinated by the Librarians of twelve secondary schools across Swindon. Throughout the festival week, students work with authors, poets and illustrators who visit schools for performances and workshops. In 2019 we are celebrating the 12th year of the Swindon Youth Festival of Literature (SYFL) and we are proud to have attracted so many wonderful and diverse authors and performers over the years. We look forward to what 2019 will bring.
For our 2019 Festival, we are delighted to announce the following top names in literature:
Each school will host workshops and interactive talks from their chosen authors throughout the week. Pupils from our partner primary schools are also invited to join in, attending an event from a leading KS2 author at their local secondary school.
Our headline event for all schools will take place at the Wyvern Theatre on Thursday 14th November with bestselling YA novelist and award winning author Annabel Pitcher. Annabel's books, My Sister Lives on the Mantelpiece, Ketchup Clouds, Silence is Goldfish and The Last Days of Archie Maxwell, are all deservedly loved for their warmth, humour and insight into the teenage mind. We are very excited that Annabel will be joining us for this year's festival.
During the week, performance poet Ash Dickinson will return to Swindon to visit each of the twelve secondary schools to perform his poetry to all Year 7 students. Ash encourages everyone’s “inner poet” by supporting them to create their own rhymes and verse.
Our Inter-school Book Quiz finishes the week on Friday 15th November at The Ridgeway School. This is always a highly competitive event between the schools' bookworms. Last year’s winners are this years hosts, Ridgeway, and they will be keen to retain the title in 2019 but who will challenge them to the trophy? It is all to play for!
The Festival programme also includes:
Creative Writing Competition
500 words story inspired by an image. Judged by author Karen Gregory
Works of art inspired from a section of text from the Carnegie 2019 winner Poet X. Judged by children's author and illustrator Steve Antony. The winners will have the exciting opportunity to participate in an illustration workshop run by Steve in the arts rooms at Swindon College who are kindly hosting this for us on Tuesday 26th November 2019.
A poem based on this year’s National Poetry theme of Truth. Judged by Ash Dickinson.
Library Ambassadors Award
Each school will nominate a student who has contributed to the running of the LRC and the coordination of the SYFL.
The Swindon Youth Festival of Literature is funded by the Swindon Association of Secondary Heads (SASH). We are extremely grateful this year for the additional sponsorship of prizes by Arval, Bower and Bailey, Browns Books for Students and WH Smith.
“SYFL connects students, books and authors - watch the sparks fly!” - Steve Cole 2018