National Share a Story Month 2020

The Planet we Share

The theme for 2020 is very wide and can include anyone or anything we share this planet with. Enclosed in the pack are some exciting and useful ideas on how book groups, schools, libraries and families can take part.

Anyone interested in joining in is encouraged to hold story sharing sessions, events encompassing art, craft, and cultural activity.  

There are ideas for competitions – and lots of lovely book related prizes generously donated by many publishers.  There is also the added excitement of a writing competition to win a school visit from an author – check out all the details on the website here. All competitions will close at noon on Tuesday 30th June 2020. The winners of all the competitions will be celebrated on our website and in our newsletters – but do also send news of your planned activities, too.  There will be interesting blogs from authors, illustrators and other bookish people on the website during May – check them out!

Included in the pack are booklists that highlight some of the themes and books that could stimulate discussion; as well as resources to use in your group and libraries.

Most of the resources will be available as downloads from the website too.

We look forward too many of you joining in and sharing your stories this May.  You can get in touch with us by email at

We want to express our huge thanks to the publishers who have supported this NSSM, either with prizes, proof copies, tasters, bookmarks, postcards, posters or reading list suggestions – all much appreciated!

  • Allen and Unwin
  • Bonnier
  • Campbell Books
  • Cicada Books
  • Faber and Faber
  • Hachette Kids
  • Macmillan Children’s
  • Penguin Random House
  • Scallywag Press
  • Scholastic
  • Simon and Schuster
  • The Reading Agency
  • Usborne


Hard copy only items –

  • Poster – Flyntock Bones, The Wonderful World of Different, Books are for Sharing, Fantastically Great Women Series
  • Bunting – Fantastically Great Women
  • Postcards – Birds, Me and my Sister, Talking is not my Thing, Life on Mars, The Wall in the Middle of the Book, Lion Lessons, Flyntock Bones.
  • Bookmark – Storm Keeper Series, 

Downloads only –

National Share-a-Story Month 2020 Competition Winner

Our writing competition had some strong entries, full of imagination and drama!  The FCBG judges created a shortlist of half a dozen that were sent to publisher, Scholastic, and author Amber Lee Dodd – who had the hard task of choosing the winner! Here is the winning entry – Lydia’s lucky school will receive a visit from Amber in the near future. 

Meanwhile, all the shortlisted entries will receive a selection of book prizes donated by publishers. Congratulations to them all!!

Winning Entry –

The Cats Home by Lydia Edwards, Liverpool

“humans are doing something called lockdown” another neighbourhood cat told me. I’m not sure what that means but I hope it stops, as my owners are home all the time. This is an unusual thing for us cats, my sister is demanding all the attention, I have to remind her I’m older.

A good thing is we get fed a lot! Although I really don’t like wet food I try and tell them that when they are squeezing the horrible, slimy, meaty stuff into a bowl but they think I’m hungry for it. If I was a human I don’t know how I’d stand staying at home. The small human seems to be handling it just fine she skips along looking at a device she calls a phone and listens to something humans call music. They actually enjoy it, its so loud it partially deafens me for days. The humans also spend a long time looking at these other screens, larger than “phones” called televisions. Yesterday they watched a film about a boy called Harry Potter whoever he is I really didn’t care. My only interest was the spider behind the sofa and the pieces chewy yellow stuff our owners kept dropping on the floor (popcorn]

The other day I heard a lot of noise. I thought our male owner was upstairs playing more music but he was sprawled across the sofa (quite annoying really, I was hoping to get some quality me time on my favourite spot). I went upstairs and the music was coming from the phone I saw the youngest human press a little green button and four faces appeared on the screen. “Hiiiii ” one of them squealed.  I nearly jumped out of my fur! It was a girl that came here once and tickled me too much I found it frightening!

I ran back downstairs to find all the best seating places gone, a downside to lockdown! Come to think of it there are a lot of downsides: I never get quality me time, a good sofa place or that much attention (unlike my sister)

Two of the humans went out to get something yesterday, I think they were going out hunting because they took a car and the male person wore a ridiculous mask. It is quite unfair because me and my sister have been banned from hunting or fighting, I couldn’t wait to see what they come back with. They returned with a tin of paint I was quite disappointed, I sniffed around it to make sure it was not edible, it wasn’t! To make things worse the humans spread the paint on the garden fence and we were not allowed out for a whole day! The humans are doing things they never normally do.

I wonder what life will be like after lockdown, I hope the humans are allowed out! My sister will still chase elastic bands all day (pointless) and me? I’ll be just the same.