'Tiny Books to the Rescue' – an open call to all communities of children’s book writers and illustrators around the world!

2020 m. liepos 29 d.
We at the Lithuanian Section of IBBY would like to share our beautiful quarantine period project Tiny Books to the Rescue created by Lithuanian children’s writers and illustrators, and kindly invite you to adapt our successful experience in your country in any part of the world! We’ve decided to promote this format as widely as possible to encourage children’s reading and foster collaboration among authors around the world.

Tiny Books to the Rescue book format is a foldable sheet of A4 paper that any child can download to their computer for free and print out at home. Our tiny books were created by teams of writers and illustrators, randomly paired to collaborate together. The idea was incredibly successful in Lithuania: Our invitation for participants received responses from over 50 writers and artists, and the books which they created and we presented on June 1 this year, on the International Day for the Protection of Children, continue to be downloaded by thousands of families.

These books are not just a gift from writers and illustrators to children living through the challenges of a global pandemic. They’re also a very important form of creative workshop for those working in children’s literature, giving them an opportunity to establish new contacts without the intrusion of publishers or other external institutions and to collaborate with writers and illustrators on a small-scale project. Artistic teams were paired together at random, but participants were also allowed to create their own collaborative duos if they so wished.

The project was undertaken in Lithuania by the Vaikų žemė (“Children’s World”) reading promotion programme, the Child Psychology Centre, and the Lithuanian Section of the International Board on Books for Young People (IBBY). The Lithuanian Culture Institute also joined as a partner in this effort.

Before launching, we created detailed guidelines and a project schedule. We followed our plan so successfully that we‘d now like to share our communication and progress with you, hoping you‘ll start similar projects in your own countries. All of our organizing team members and artists donated their time and creative effort free of charge. The Lithuanian media showed considerable interest in our work as a social project and artists were able to hone their professional skills by consulting with a psychologist and a literary scholar and ‘practice’ their craft working together with others in their creative field. To be sure, we would also recommend pursuing any leads you might have regarding sponsorship or financial support in your own countries and communities.

We kindly invite you to take a look and get inspired by the selection of the works created by our authors – nine tiny books have been translated into English and you are most welcome to share them with your readers and authors.

We also would like to share several documents we used while implementing the project in Lithuania. Hopefully, you’ll be able to make use of them in your own country. These documents are: an initial published invitation to writers and illustrators and the first public announcement about the project.

Please don’t hesitate to contact us info@ibbylietuva.lt if you have any questions. Stay safe and healthy!

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