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University researcher shares tips on hit children’s books

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Author Sat Dich receiving an award from Prime Minister Hun Sen. PHOTO SUPPLIED

University researcher shares tips on hit children’s books

Sat Dich is a prolific writer who has entered many competitions and won several awards, including in 2014 when he won the second prize for poetry at the Together Against Corruption contest organised by Transparency International (TI) Cambodia.

That same year, he also received an honorary award for a poem titled The Farmer’s Young Son as well as winning a Hel Sumpha award organised by the Ministry of Culture and Fine Arts for his novel Youth Blood.

In 2016, Dich won an award for the poem Gold Blood Drops for the Cambodia model youth programme under Prime Minister Hun Sen.

In 2017, he won the ministry’s Hang Thun Hak award for his short story My Crazy Mother and also won third prize at the Supreme Patriach Chuon Nath awards for the poem Teachers are the soul engineers of the next generation.

Then in 2018 he received an award in the field of poetry for Cold Shadow given out by the Intellectual Library and in 2019 he received first prize for the children’s story Mar, Mar lost books at a competition organised by Aide et Action (AEA).

Dich also received a gold medal for his work in education from education minister Hang Chuon Naron.

“At this point, I would like to write only short stories, poems and children’s stories,” Dich said.

He said that with his short story writing, he mainly focuses on three elements: The meaning of the story, its tone and its philosophy.

The young writer said that what people write must reflect society and have universal values and his preference was to stick to the classic rules of composition and stick to portraying society’s reality.

As for children’s stories, Dich said that writing them requires the use of short words that are easy-to-understand and easy-to-read. Ideally, a children’s story should also be humorous and educate the children.

“Currently, I am writing more children’s stories with the understanding that education for children needs a good foundation that can be built upon easily. So I want to write a lot of children’s stories and provide educational ideas through those books,” he said.

As for writers who want to win awards, Dich said that before most people win anything they go through countless failures, but if you are determined – then no matter how many times you fail – you will not give up.

Dich was born in Kep town. After graduating from high school there in 2012 he became a student at the Takeo Provincial Teacher Training Centre. He went on to earn his Bachelor’s degree in Khmer literature from Angkor Khemara University and a Master’s degree in Khmer literature from RUPP in 2019.

Dich is currently taking a course on “Principal Professionalism” at the National Institute of Education from Dr Quach Mengly while working as a writer and researcher at the publishing house of Mengly J Quach University Press.


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