Q&A with Cheryl Taylor

Q&A with Cheryl Taylor

Five questions with Cheryl Taylor, controller of CBBC, which is hosting the two-day ‘Awesome Authors’ event this weekend.

What will the Awesome Authors event involve?
We are running Awesome Authors as part of the BBC’s Love to Read campaign, which is all about celebrating reading for pleasure. We have partnered with Birmingham Council and BBC Learning Everyone to run this event, which will be two days of celebrations of children’s books. We are welcoming about 30 children’s writers to the event and there will be sections on some of our programmes, such as Wolfblood.

Are you celebrating Awesome Authors on the CBBC channel?
On Saturday and Sunday all of our programmes will be around book adaptations we’ve done. Children’s authors Phil Earle and Isla Fisher will also be appearing, and we will feature kids who wrote in about how much they love reading.

How are you working with libraries?
We are going to live-stream events from libraries in Edinburgh, Poole and Belfast, as well as the events in Birmingham. Authors will be talking children over the weekend so, for example, viewers will be able to watch Holly Smale being interviewed from the Library of Birmingham.

What do you look for when you’re looking for children’s books to adapt?
We pride ourselves on our dramatic adaptations. We make high-end, live action drama so if a book is already well-known that’s a good place to start. Having a brand like Hetty Feature helps us put our head above the parapet.

What future plans do you have for future book content?
We are running a book club every week and that has risen in popularity over the last year, with more children than ever writing book reviews. We also have the Blue Peter Book Awards and at any time I’m reading and discussing books with my team, teeing up the next set of adaptations. We have 9-10 on the go at one time!