The Copyright Agency is thrilled that well-loved children’s writer, and Reading Australia author, Morris Gleitzman has been announced as the Australian Children’s Laureate for 2018–19.

He will dedicate the next two years to advocating for the importance of stories and everything stories can offer.

Gleitzman is the author of the award-winning novel, Once (2005), for which there are dedicated teaching resources available on Reading Australia. In addition, new Reading Australia resources are being developed this year for Gleitzman’s wonderful novel, Loyal Creatures(2014).

Each Children’s Laureate has a theme that guides their two-year term; Gleitzman’s theme is ‘Stories Create Our Future’.

He explains, “Young people need stories more than ever. Stories to delight, stories to beguile, stories to inspire, stories to move deeply. And through these experiences, stories that equip young readers to embrace an often dark and uncertain world with optimism, resolve and creativity.”

The Copyright Agency’s Cultural Fund has provided more than $70,000 to the Australian Children’s Literature Alliance since it kicked off the Children’s Laureate program in 2011. This funding gives the author a modest stipend for the two-year period.

During his tenure as laureate, Morris Gleitzman will travel the country attending key literary events and festivals including the Norman Lindsay Children’s Literature Festival in March, the CBCA Victoria conference and Sydney Writers’ Festival in May, and the Adelaide Festival of Ideas in July.

For more information, see www.childrenslaureate.org.au