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Marshall Cavendish’s First-Ever iPhone Apps for Budding Writers Project

Popular nation-wide book publishing project by children makes winning entries available on the Apple App Store

July 22, 2010 – Marshall Cavendish, a member of Times Publishing Limited, has brought Budding Writers to the iPhone Apps store on 12 July 2010. The first two books made available in Apple App Stores worldwide were last year’s winning entries, “Ricky Learns to Fly” by Yuli Steffina and “The Crying Dream” by Lee Kitt Anya. The apps were developed in-house by Marshall Cavendish Online.

Budding Writers Project aims to promote works by children for children. The competition started in 1999 and was born out of a desire to encourage young people to hone their creative writing and artistic skills by allowing them an opportunity to experience the process of publishing and seeing their own works in print.

Last year, in addition to being published in the usual print format, the winning books were published as digital books. The two books were also sent for a second reprint for the first time in the history of the contest.

iPhone Apps for the Education Industry

Marshall Cavendish aims to meet the evolving reading habits and preferences of children by adapting and delivering its content effectively and creatively, taking accessibility and appeal into constant consideration. The international publisher recognises that information technology will continue to play a greater role in children’s lifestyles, with the rise of mobile applications and mobile learning allowing children easier access to creatively-stimulating content, on the go and at their own pace.

“After successfully converting the Budding Writers Project 2009 winning entries into e-books, we decided to launch the books on the Apple App Store in view of the popularity of iPhone apps. With this additional digital platform, we are able to provide our talented authors’ works the international exposure they deserve,” said Lee Fei Chen, Deputy Head of Publishing, Marshall Cavendish Publishing Group.

The winners of the 2009 competition not only wrote and illustrated the winning entries, but were also recorded narrating their stories for the e-books. Illustrations were taken from the books and resized for the iPhone, with scrollable text and the authors’ voice recordings to accompany the images. It took just over two weeks to complete the conversion.

Steffina, 17, remarked, “My joy is to connect with readers in the best way possible, so I'm really excited about the release of this new Marshall Cavendish iPhone app that allows me to bring the characters to life. I hope that the message will touch people's hearts, young and old alike, and that they will enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed narrating it.”  

“It is so cool to have our books available on the iPhone too! With the iPhone’s popularity, I am sure many more people will be able to read my book now. I never expected to have my own iPhone app, and I cannot wait to show it to everyone,” Anya, 12, said. 

Information on Budding Writers Project, the authors of the books and the characters in the stories is also available in the apps, which can be read in both portrait and landscape formats. The apps can be found in the Books category of the Apple App Store. 

All future winning entries will be considered for conversion into apps for the iPhone.

Marshall Cavendish will also be converting over 30 of its titles from the iRead and Nao Nao series into iPhone apps - slated to be launched in October 2010 and August 2010 respectively. The iRead storybooks range from folktales to fantasies and help to expand elementary learners’ vocabularies, while the Nao Nao collection aims to strike a chord with young readers through the interesting daily life of a little boy, thereby inculcating moral values in children more effectively. Both series cater to primary school readers.

Budding Writers Project 2010

The competition period for Budding Writers Project 2010 will close on July 30. The contest is open to all primary and secondary school students in Singapore. To date, this year’s competition has received a positive response.

The judging panel for Budding Writers Project 2010 includes Christopher Yaw, Associate Publisher at Marshall Cavendish, and local authors Emily Lim and Judy Ling.

Christopher has been in the publishing industry for more than 15 years and has held various positions in the editorial and publishing divisions; Emily was the first in Asia to win two medals at the Independent Publisher Book (IPPY) Awards, the world's largest book awards; and Judy writes books, textbooks and workbooks for children, including the “My Pals are Here! English” series which is used in many schools.

Winners of the competition will be announced in late September, and will undergo a four-day editorial attachment in October to experience the whole authorship process – pre-publication, content digitisation, sales and marketing, and production of the final product. Apps are a newly-added component of the digital training that the winners will receive this year, held during the content digitisation portion of the editorial attachment. Winners will get their books published as physical books, e-books and, now, even as apps.

Budding Writers Project 2010 will culminate in an awards ceremony for all prize-winners on November 12, followed by a book signing for the two winners at Times bookstores in November.

To learn more about Budding Writers Project, please visit www.marshallcavendish.com/education/buddingwriters 
and www.facebook.com/pages/Budding-Writers-Project/89042789380.