Priory school pupils work with Hitchin author on World Book Day project

Pupils from The Priory School meet Hitchin-based author Matt Adcock. Picture: Richard Mayers

Pupils from The Priory School meet Hitchin-based author Matt Adcock. Picture: Richard Mayers - Credit: Archant

A Hitchin author spent the day brainstorming with young, aspiring authors from The Priory School this week in preparation for a World Book Day project.

A group of budding authors and illustrators from The Priory got the chance to meet and learn from author Matt Adcock on Wednesday.

The pupils, from Year 7 to Year 13, are working on an ambitious, student-led project that will see them publish an anthology of short stories on the theme of 'Darkness and Dystopia' for World Book Day in March.

Richard Mayers - lead practitioner of media and computing at The Priory and children's author - is overseeing the pupil's project and helped publish Matt's debut novel, Complete Darkness, in October.

He said: "I invited Matt to speak to the the students because they demonstrated a real interest in stories based around the theme of crime, horror and darkness.

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"It's pleasing to see so much talent in our school, I thought what better way to enhance students' love of reading than to encourage them to publish their own work to a global audience?

"It was only natural that Matt, whose book is set in a dystopian London hellscape, would be a good person to take notes from and inspire their writing."

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Matt hosted a Q&A session with the students - allowing the young people to discuss their own ideas, ask questions about writing fiction, learn about the creative writing process and get some tips from a published author.

"I had a lot of fun talking to the students who have some really scary ideas - they chose the theme of Darkness and Dystopia and are really delivering with dark near-future tales," said Matt.

"The short stories include tales of mind control, robotic enforcement, assorted killers and even guilt and punishment. It's wonderfully grim stuff and I'll certainly be getting a copy on World Book Day.

"Having read through the various work-in-progress stories I was really impressed with the creativity, energy and writing skill that the young people have shown. This book project is going to be an awesome achievement and a great way to showcase new young writing talent."

All proceeds from the anthology will go towards buying more books for the school library, fuelling the desire for more diverse and interesting fiction.

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