Sir Ranulph Fiennes (Gulf News)
Authors battling to keep children interested in books – Fiennes
By Kevin Scott, Staff Reporter
Gulf News, February 28, 2009, 23:05

Dubai: British adventurer Sir Ranulph Fiennes believes authors face a difficult task keeping children interested in reading books in today’s modern technological environment.

The 64-year-old spoke about the changing role of children’s literature after giving a presentation of his expeditions at Dubai’s Rashid School for Boys.

Sir Ranulph is in Dubai as part of the inaugural Emirates Airline International Festival of Literature (EAIFL), which coincides with an Education Day on Sunday.

He said: “I think the challenge is for authors to write books that interest children despite the fact that we’re much more up against it today than we were 20 years ago.

“Today, children including my daughter who is only 3-years-old, are already pressing buttons on videos and other gadgets that I don’t even understand. They’re really into interactive stuff so poor old books don’t get the attention they used to.

“Personally, I’ve written 18 books with a pen in longhand. I’ve never used a computer; I’ve never even sent an e-mail.”