Trinity College Dublin’s Library have put on display an exhibition of handmade books designed and illustrated by children. It marks the culmination of a two-month project called Bookmarks which aimes to inspire children to become the next generation of writers, illustartors and publishers.
Finn Wallace has gone and done what many people have been attempting to do but have just never gotten around to, he has finished writting his very first book at just 11 years-old.
It only took him six weeks to complete and now has it displayed in Trinity College Dublin’s Long Hall alongside the Book of Kells.
Finn’s book ‘The Adventures of Jack and Bob’ is a fast-paced read that follows two young boys as they zip through portals and do battle with otherworldly creatures.
“The idea for the story just came into my head because I have a good imagination,” he says. I thought it would be fun to do my story about a pair of twins who go through a portal and meet a goblin.”
The children attended workshops over the course of the two months delivered in their schools by poet and children’s author Catherine Ann Cullen, artist Hannah Maguire and editor Síne Quinn. They got to write, illustrate and bind their own books with the assitant of experts.
Bookmarks not only fires up the childrens imaginations but it also helps lift their horizons by introducing them to the world of higher education. Most of the kids participating are from schools where there is only a small percentage of students going to third level.
So, the Bookmark inititive occurs at a time when these children are preparing for a major change in their lives, as they move from primary to secondary school.
This year it was the fifth-class children from Drimnagh Castle, Scoil Cholmcille, Ballybrack and Socil Eoin, Kilbarrack who got involved. The schools were all linked to Trinity through its access programme, which also supports students from under-represented backgrounds.