Monday, 7 February 2011

Conference report

Everybody at this conferences sitting or standing close to me asks whether I am staying for the whole conference. Yes, why? Only one person explained: "Big stars normally fly into a conference, give their talk and fly back home". Apparently I am not a big star.

Some FB friends have asked for reports. I hadn't thought about it. I am not taking notes. It's one of those conferences where you can enjoy yourself. There won't be any quiz afterwards.

The politician who opened the conference referred to his children who are grownups now, but he still thinks children's literature is important. Why do people outside children's literature always connect it with children, preferably their own? I wouldn't give a job to an applicant who thinks being a mother qualifies for children's literature research. Some of the best children's books were written by childless authors.

Today's round table was about Norwegian, Swedish, Finnish, Danish and Flemish children's literature. Everybody agreed that we are still not quite sure what children's literature is. But whatever it is, it is excellent and deserves more attention.

There were Super Readers who have read picturebooks. Teenagers reading picturebooks - isn't it wonderful? I wonder how the organisers managed to persuade the kids. Well done.

There was a young Danish author who wrote her novel when she was 14 and published when she was 18. She is one of those exceptions from the rule that children's literature is written by adults who have forgotten what is was like to be a child. The Danish author's name is Fatima AlZahahra'a Altraktchi. This is Nordic children's literature today. I must read this book. I must read Den gröna cirkeln by Stefan Casta. I must read all these wonderful books that people here are talking about and that I have missed. I need a time-turner to go to the three sessions at once. This is what Stefan Casta said: "A YA writer is a burglar who breaks into a young person's mind". This alone makes it worth while to be here.

1 comment:

Ulla P E said...

Tack, Masja. Det är alltid intressant att höra lite mera än de rader som ryms på FB. Jag saknar verkligen det där att åka på konferenser (även om jag annars trivs väldigt bra både med mitt liv och mitt arbete)!