Michael Rosen is shortlisted for this year’s CLiPPA award for children’s poetry after winning it the previous year. Submissions for the prize from publishers were up 50% on last year.
It is the 15th anniversary of the first Literacy in Primary Poetry Award (CLiPPA) which remains the only annual award in the UK for published poetry for children.
Andersen Press is featured on the shortlist with Kwame Alexander’s free verse novel, Booked, while Rosen is up for his collection, Jelly Boots, Smelly Boots, (Bloomsbury). Otter-Barry Books, Macmillan and the Emma Press are also represented.
Besides Alexander and Rosen, the full shortlist includes Zim Zam Zoom! by James Carter, illustrated by Nicola Colton (Otter-Barry Books), Wonderland; Alice in Poetry edited Michaela Morgan (Macmillan) and Moon Juice by Kate Wakeling, illustrated by Elīna Brasliņa (The Emma Press).
Last year the award went to two winners: Rosen won for his collection A Great Big Cuddle (Walker), illustrated by Chris Riddell as well as Sarah Crossan for her verse novel, One (Bloomsbury).
A spokesperson for the prize said: “Commitment to poetry through the educational resource website Poetryline and CLPE’s Power of Poetry training for teachers, combined with the profile and prestige of CLiPPA, have contributed to the number of publisher submissions for the poetry award increasing by 50% from 2016 to 2017.”
Rachel Rooney, poet and chair of the CLiPPA 2017 judges, said: “Judging was made a challenge by the spread of books that were submitted as the CLiPPA is open to published poetry books for a diverse and changing readership, from the pre-schooler to the early teen. Writing poetry for children can appear easy but writing powerful poetry that is accessible and appealing to children is considerably more difficult to achieve. In their own particular way, all the shortlisted books did this.”
The shortlist announcement can be viewed here: vimeo.com/217660795
The 2017 award will be announced on 14th July at a ceremony at the National Theatre and children's laureate, Chris Riddell, will live draw the Award Ceremony. The winner will receive £1000 and a specially bound edition of their book created by the bookbinder Mark Cockram.
The free Shadowing Scheme to involve schools in the Poetry Award 2017 is also now open. Last year more than 3,900 children took part.