Ayaan Aamir is a 11-year-old popular storyteller, writer and author of the book ‘African Adventure’ which was chosen as one of the 30 best entries globally and published by Oxford Reading Tree. Taking the Creative Kids Café stage on day six at Sharjah Children’s Reading Festival (SCRF 2019), Ayaan revealed how his passion for reading and creativity earned him the Oxford Writing Competition’s top prize in 2016.
When asked who or what his source of inspiration was, he says, “I went on an African safari, which was daring and equally delightful. The elephants and the lions and the flora and fauna there were really great. When I came back, I was visualising a tree house there and many other things. I have always loved reading, then I imagine and sit down to write, based on things that I’ve seen. I want to write about thriller and mystery stories one day”.
Another child with outstanding abilities making headlines is ninth grader Anfal Al Zaabi, who is a member of the Sharjah Youth Parliament. She won the first place among all National Emirati schools in the ‘Anamel Mubdiaa’ competition for gifted writers for her book, “Because We Are the Children of Zayed”. She also occupied the second place in the Arabic Language Competition and the Social Olympiad. She is a powerhouse of talent who loves reading and writing in equal measure.
When asked about her journey so far and her plans in the future, Anfal says, “Even when my family would go out somewhere, I would prefer to sit quietly in a corner and read. I also like poetry. However, I must confess, although I really like to write, I would like to grow up and become a doctor one day and save other people’s lives”.
SCRF is one of the most important cultural events dedicated to children in the UAE and greater Arab region. It has gone beyond just a book exhibition and developed into an integrated event that contributes to enriching the knowledge of visitors with science and literature, while ensuring the participation of organisations and centres dedicated to children.