Author of the Month – Julia Donaldson
By Lisa Bulpin
Children all around the world love her books that are easy to read and follow.
She works with amazing illustrators that bring her fantastic characters to life on every page.
Julia Donaldson is not only a children’s author, she is also a performer and playwright.
Here are some interesting facts about Julia Donaldson
- She was born in 1948 in Hampstead, London
- She was always very musical, through out her life she’s learnt the piano, guitar, acted in school plays and sang with the Children’s Opera Group
- She knows both French and German
- She later studied Drama and French at Bristol University
- She sang in pubs during her time at Bristol University as well as in Paris for 6 months to café audiences for money with her two close friends
- She continued to busk for years to come, in America and Paris with her friend Malcolm whom she later married in 1972
- She then worked as a secretary in Radio Bristol where she had a weekly slot as the short story producer and editor.
- In 1974 she was appointed as editor at Robert Tyndall, a small book publishers. During this time she wrote songs regularly for the Play Away, Play School, program on BBC Children’s Television
- She composed two musicals for children called King Grunt’s Cake (1976) and Pirate on the Pier (1980)
- In 1977/6 Donaldson studied at Brighton College of Education for a Postgraduate Certificate in Education and worked for two years as an English teacher at St Mary’s Hall in Brighton
- Hamish, her first child, arrived in 1978 and her second son Alastair was born in 1981. She never returned to full-time employment after having children
- In 1987 she had her son Jesse, making them a family of FIVE!
- The first book she had published was A Squash and a Squeeze, a song she had written many years ago and turned into a book.
- Her Gruffalo book was published in 1995 and has had HUGE success, it has even been dubbed a “modern classic”.
Julia donaldson has had immense success with all the books she has published since the Gruffalo and has a huge following.
She has worked with other great illustrators including Axel Scheffler, Lydia Monks, David Roberts and Nick Sharratt, who has also illustrated two books of poems by Donaldson, Crazy Mayonnaisy Mum and Wriggle and Roar.
Her stories are a must have for any child’s book case, the catchy words, and rhymes and eye catching pictures will keep children entertained for years to come.
When she doesn't have her nose buried in a book, Rachel can be found surrounded by furry friends or cooking up delicious plant-based feasts.
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