Last year, I was lucky enough to be chosen by the Bath Children’s Literature Festival to review David Walliams’ show. You can read the original article below and on the festival website here
This year is the 10th Bath Children’s Literature Festival, David Walliams is opening the festival this year and the festival have asked me to go along to the show and write a review for them. I’m really excited about it and I wonder if he will tell lots of jokes and if it will be really funny.
David Walliams is the author of Billionaire Boy and Gangsta Granny and many other amazing books. His books are well loved all over the world and some have even been made into TV productions. I really like David Walliams and my favourite book is probably Grandpa’s Great Escape.
It’s Saturday morning and we’re sat inside the Forum waiting for the show to start, I’m really excited. There are loads of people here and nearly all the seats are full. It’s a huge place and so busy and noisy. Everyone seems so excited and I just can’t wait for the show to start!
David started the show by telling us about his new picture book, it’s called “There’s a Snake in my School”. He told us how he likes the illustrations in the books and works very closely with the illustrator Tony Ross.
I was quite surprised that David said he didn’t actually like reading that much when he was younger. But then when he was about 8 years old, he discovered Charlie and the Chocolate Factory – this is still his favourite book and he says he reads it every year. After that he read all Roald Dahl’s other books and he says he is his hero.
In the show David read a part of his latest book called “The World’s Worst Children”, the part he read was about “Windy Mindy”, it was a really good idea for a story and I really enjoyed it. Later on he also read a bit from Gangsa Granny and Ratburger, it was really great actually hearing him read his stories out loud.
David’s tips for people who want to be writers when they are older were to write about people you know. Like in Gangsta Granny, he got the idea from his own Grandma, he said that she was really boring and played scrabble all the time and smelled of cabbages. He also told us about the dinner lady he had in school who sounded really scary, he used her character in Billionaire Boy.
At the end of the show, a few children were chosen to ask some questions, unfortunately I didn’t get to ask him a question, but these were a few of the questions and David’s answers:
Q: Who is your favourite character?
A: David told us that his favourite character is Raj the shopkeeper who appears in all of his books.
Q: Did you ever get told off in school for untidy handwriting?
A: David confessed he actually had detention for writing illegibly in RE because he found it boring.
Q: Do you ever get stuck with your writing?
A: David admitted he does, but then you have to go off and do something else like go for a walk or a swim and then the ideas pop up.
Q: How long does it take to write a book?
A: David says it takes a few months to write each book, but then it also takes a few months before that doing lots of thinking to get all the ideas for the story in his head first.
Q: Do you like writing picture books or chapter books?
A: David joked that he prefers picture books as he doesn’t have to write as much then and the illustrator has to do all the work!
Q: If you could, which book would you jump into?
A: David said he would like to jump into Billionaire Boy because he has so many cool things.
I really enjoyed the show and I thought it was really inspiring and I got lots of good tips for my own writing.
By Lois Edwards, age 10