Hear from our 2017 speakers

Kiran Millwood Hargrave on girl power

Kiran Millwood Hargrave’s début novel A Girl of Ink & Stars was a massive hit, winning the British Book Awards’ Children’s Book of the Year and a slew of other prizes too. She talks to us about being a prize-winner, as well as her current and future projects. Read more

Kiran Millwood Hargrave and Chicken House m.d. Barry Cunningham will be speaking at The Bookseller's Children's Conference 2017 about The Girl of Ink & Stars and its success. 

Finding and publishing under-represented writers

Penguin Random House UK launched its nationwide WriteNow scheme to find, mentor and publish new writers from under-represented communities. Mainga Bhima, assistant editor at Penguin Random House Children’s Books, and author Nazneen Ahmed share their experiences of taking part in the scheme.


Mainga and Nazneen will be discussing finding, mentoring and publishing new writers from communities under-represented on the nation’s bookshelves at The Bookseller's Children's Conference 2017.

20 years of Harry Potter magic

The first book in J K Rowling's Harry Potter series was published 20 years ago. We take a look at how the story of a boy wizard grew into a record-breaking franchise.

James McKnight, chief creative officer at The Blair Partnership, will be presenting 20 years of Harry Potter magic - including audience insight and how the partnership matrix works - at The Bookseller's Children's Conference 2017.

Alice Curry on inclusive publishing

Lantana Publishing’s evolution has been remarkable—and rapid. Founder Alice Curry explains why the list has refused to compromise on its inclusive ethos. Read more

Alice Curry will be speaking at The Bookseller's Children's Conference 2017 with children’s author and illustrator Nadine Kadaan about publishing books for today's audiences.

What children want from author events

Authorfy is a literacy platform that aims to inspire children and increase the appeal of reading and writing. As well as working with the children’s publishers and running creative writing workshops for the last six years, the team behind Authorfy regularly asks students what they want from books, storylines, artwork and more. Here's a brief insight into what children want from author events. 

Mel Taylor-Bessent, director of Authorfy, will be presenting a full video sharing ‘What Children Want’ at The Bookseller's Children’s Conference 2017.

Stripes Publishing on championing change in YA

Stripes Publishing, an imprint of the Little Tiger Group, has just published A Change is Gonna Come, an anthology of YA short stories about change by authors from BAME backgrounds, in response to the lack of diversity in publishing. Ruth Bennett, commissioning editor at Stripes, and editorial mentee Aa’Ishah Z Hawton, who shadowed Bennett during the editorial process, share their experiences of working on it. Read more

Little Tiger Group’s brand director Lauren Ace and publicity and marketing executive Charlie Morris will be talking about their approach to PR and marketing for A Change is Gonna Come at The Bookseller’s Children’s Conference 2017. Writer and teacher Darren Chetty, who wrote the foreword, will also be speaking about the thinking behind the book.

Lauren Child on being Children's Laureate

Award-winning author and illustrator Lauren Child was unveiled as the next Waterstones Children's Laureate in June. She shares her thoughts on stepping into Chris Riddell's shoes and what she plans to do in the role with us. Read more

Lauren will be speaking at The Bookseller's Children's Conference 2017 in conversation with the Times' arts editor Alex O’ Connell about her aspirations for her term as Laureate and her views on publishing and readers.

Heritage Children's Publishing Brands

Some of the most popular children's publishing brands are celebrating significant anniversaries. Kiera O'Brien, charts and data editor at The Bookseller, rounds up how many books these brands have sold to date.

Kiera will be providing an overview of the children's book market at The Bookseller's Children's Conference 2017.