24th September 2004 at 01:00
Michael Morpurgo is the third Children's Laureate and the inventor - with the poet Ted Hughes - of the idea for one. He has written more than 90 books for children, including the recent very moving Private Peaceful, set in the First World War. He is a great admirer of R L Stevenson and always writes, like his hero, in long-hand, propped up against pillows. Michael lives in Devon, where he and his wife Clare established Farms for City Children.