Friday, 26 May 2017
Acclaimed children’s author Sophia Bennett inspired Year 8 girls at Bolton School to reach for success whilst remaining true to themselves in her “Winning Like a Girl” talk. The presentation used examples from her own writing, where girls in tough situations ultimately win through, and from other writers, movie stars, campaigners and scientists. She advised girls on how they can change their body language and self-image to get the success they deserve. She told the pupils that they should not be obsessed with fitting in but should make the world accept them for the person they are. The lecture was very well received and was the inspiration for a creative writing workshop which saw small groups working together before presenting short, powerful and positive feminist presentations.
Earlier the author spent lunch with the Dymond Society, a group of high achieving Senior School girls, and the morning addressing Year 6 Junior Girls, when she talked about what it takes to be a writer and her career so far. She shared photos of her writing shed and mood board, and talked about her latest series of books about artists and muses in 1850s London and her future project of a book about social media. She told the girls that the ‘secret’ to being a writer is in the re-writing and editing. In a lively questions and answers session, Sophia told the girls that the favourite book she has written is Threads, which interweaves an original mix of fashion with a story about child soldiers in Uganda related to the Night Walkers. It proved a telling combination as it won her a competition run by Barry Cunningham, the man who discovered J K Rowling. She told the girls by putting together unique things you can create something really interesting. She cited her mother as being her writing inspiration as she had let her read so widely, along with authors Noel Streatfeild and Frances Hodgson Burnett.
Sophia Bennett’s other books are The Look, about two sisters and modelling; You Don’t Know Me, which deals with cyberbullying; The Castle, an adventure story featuring maths and codes; and Love Song, which recently won the Romantic Novel of the Year Award.
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