In which I belatedly think about World Book Day

World Book Day! Of course. That’s what I should have blogged about last week. I sat in my little purple office thinking, “What should I blog about?” and ended up on poverty and social mobility which was fine, albeit a bit ranty, but it actually was World Book Day, and I am a wannabe writer and non-wannabe reader. It was obvious, and I missed it. Sorry.

So what we’re all going to do now, is agree to pretend that it’s still World Book Day and I’m entirely punctually blogging on the topic of the day. I’ll give you a moment, if you wish, to pop off and change into whatever you were wearing last Thursday for added verisimilitude.

Are you ready? Then I shall begin. Well, World Book Day, eh? What is there to say? Actually what is there to say? Something book-related I suppose. Judging from the photos adorning my mummy-friends’ facebook and twitter feeds it would appear that going to school dressed as a fictional character is a big World Book Day thing. So let’s start with that. Which character would you dress up as, if you weren’t one of those responsible adults with a job where turning up in Hogwarts’ robes makes colleagues walk the long way around the office to avoid your desk?

It’s a tricky one. Lots of my favourite fictional characters are from contempory fiction which doesn’t really lend itself to playing dress-up. If the character you’re dressing up as is from the same age group and time period as you, there’s a risk no-one will notice that you’re in costume, which has some advantages in the workplace but is not really In The Spirit Of The Thing.

Children’s books probably provide a richer seam for quality costume work, tending as they do, to be heavily people by Wizards,Vampires,Pirates, Talking animals and the like. I think I could rock a Worst Witch costume, and I was very fond of her as a child. In our younger days, my sister and I did bear more than a passing resemblance to Beverly Cleary’s utterly brillant Beezus and Ramona so that’s an option (and no, I’m not offering you a picture of our younger selves for comparison.)


Fantasy fiction must also provide good dressing up opportunities. Terry Pratchett gives you exciting options of wizards, witches, vampires, policemen, vampire policemen and trolls. A troll suit might be tricky to build though, so maybe not.

I think my fantasy dress-up pick at the end of the day is going to be a bit of a classic. I’m going to go Jane Eyre.

Jane Eyre

Now I know she’s billed as being a bit plain, which isn’t ideal for dress-up, but I don’t think I can bring myself to abandon Jane for one of those flightly Austen heroines just in the name of prettier hair. Jane it has to be. Sensibly attired, unflatteringly centre-parted but resourceful and intelligent. Go Jane! Go Jane!

So what about you? Remembering  that it’s still last Thursday, who will you be dressing up as for school today?

Author: Alison May

Writer. Creative writing teacher. Freelance trainer in the voluntary sector. Anything to avoid getting a real job... Aiming to have one of the most eclectic blogs around, because being interested in just one thing suggests a serious breakdown in curiousity.

4 thoughts on “In which I belatedly think about World Book Day”

  1. Well, since we all had to dress as women last Friday (isn’t that what one does on international womens day?) I think I’d have to dress as someone very manly the day before…. so who is the most manly book character…..hmmm… who IS the most manly book character? Mikael Blomqvist maybe? He’s a smart, sociable, hard working, stressed coffee-swilling dude with a moral code for upholding justice while being incapable of upholding a relationship or his trousers. Yeah Blomqvist it is!!


  2. Despite being a confessed bibliophile, as a parent I dread World Book Day and the competitive nature of dressing up children. I am not an earth mother and don’t see…so unless they want to go as Oliver Twist (grubby urchin – easily done) I’m stumped. We had suggestions ranging from Dumblebore ( requiring cloak and beard – help!) Mr Stink (waistcoat and trench coat tied with string) to Wally ( as in, Where’s…) All of which required purchasing items – something I am disinclined to do when said items will be worn once only. Perhaps the focus of World Book Day could actually be books??? Too radical perhaps…


  3. Loving the Beezus and Ramona reference, and of course Jane Eyre. I’d like to be Precious Ramotswe (theNumber 1 Ladies Detective Agency) if it didn’t require me to black up!


  4. Wheatcroft didn’t do dressing up for World Book day sadly so I didn’t have to fashion anything for that.

    I will pay respect to my favourite comfort reading and go as Harriet Vane aka Lady Harriet Wimsey. I’ll go as her as she first appears in the books, in the dock at the Old Bailey accused of murdering her lover. It’s the 1920’s which I think is a good period style-wise. Sayers says she ‘could not be described as beautiful’ which will make things easier but she must have had something going on as our hero comes over all peculiar after just one glance at her. I’m avoiding basing my costume on her wedding day look as she is described as looking like a ship in full sail in a gold lame wedding dress – not sure I could pull that off for day to day wear.

    They say that Dorothy L Sayers wrote Lord Peter as her ideal man and Harriet Vane was based on herself so she could write herself into bed and marriage with him! Sounds like a plan to me..


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: