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Can you tell a story?

By PeterC on 30th January 2012

Julia Donaldson and Cressida Cowell have teamed up to find Britain’s top storyteller - read on to see how you can enter...

Are you sitting comfortably? Then we’ll begin.

Two of the country’s best loved children’s writers, Children’s Laureate Julia Donaldson and acclaimed author, Cressida Cowell, have teamed up with World Book Day to find the UK’s first Storytelling Superstar, somebody who thrills and charms a young audience when they read to them.

Julia and Cressida have

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enchanted millions with books such as The Gruffalo and How to Train Your Dragon, and they are now on a quest to find parents, siblings, grandparents, babysitters, teachers or librarians who add an extra element of fun when they read aloud to a young audience.

Julia and Cressida are now urging for video nominations of the country’s most skilled and passionate storytellers in action. It’s simple to enter. Just visit the special Storytelling Superstar page at and follow the instructions to upload

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a short clip of the storytelling master. Entries close on Sunday 12th February 2012.

Julia said: “I’m delighted to team up with World Book Day and help find the country’s first ever ‘Storytelling Superstar’. All children love being told a story, and a good storyteller can transport his or her listeners into a different world. It's a wonderful way of stimulating children's imagination, helping them to understand themselves and others and to become the avid readers and the storytelling superstars of the future."

Cressida said: “There are so many wonderful storytellers hidden away in homes, schools and libraries across the country. It’s about time we celebrated their exceptional talents and I’m incredibly proud to act as a judge for Storytelling Superstar. We’re looking for people who bring the reading experience to life and create excitement around story time. It could be they ‘act’ out a story, use funny voices, make tales up or even simply ensure children join in.”

Julia and Cressida will be joined on the judging panel by Sue Jones OBE, The Reading Agency’s Programme Manager for Young People. Sue heads up the MyVoice project, which gives young people the chance to co-create and produce creative reading events in libraries. Sue said: “Good reading starts early and research shows that children who share a book with others are more likely to develop language skills and advanced reading levels. Libraries across the country will be supporting Storytelling Superstar – it’s the natural place to look for books to inspire children.”

The nation’s narrating talent will then be scrutinised by the judging panel in time for World Book Day itself, which is on 1st March, when the winner of Storytelling Superstar will be unveiled to the nation. The winner will also receive a year’s worth of children’s books from National Book Tokens*. For more entry details and terms and conditions please go to

Now in its 15th year, World Book Day is celebrated in over 100 countries worldwide with a main aim in UK and Ireland to encourage children to explore the pleasures of books and reading.

Visit for more information and the latest news.

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