13th March 2009 at 00:00

Glasgow's annual Aye Write! book festival, organised by the city's library service and now in its fourth year, draws to a close tomorrow, having played host to not just adults, but around 8,000 nursery, primary and secondary pupils.

The schools' programme this year has offered more than 60 free events, featuring over 20 different authors, and pressure for tickets to all the sessions, from "Bounce and Rhyme" times to author talks, has been so great that everything was booked up well before it started last week.

However, thanks to the wonders of the internet, schools which missed out can have virtual access to a number of the guests featured in this year's education programme.

Award-winning Glasgow author Catherine Forde, for instance, who specialises in gritty, thrillers for teenagers, such as Tug of War, Fat Boy Swim and The Drowning Pond, is one of an increasing number of writers who have their own websites. Visitors logging on to www.catherineforde.co.uk can read a very accessible interview with her, based on the kind of questions she is often asked by pupils, including what her writing routine is ("I write until lunchtime in my pyjamas") and how much money she makes ("not enough to buy a yacht or a Maserati").

Catherine has a Bebo page which includes reviews; details of what she did before she became a full-time writer (edited dictionaries and taught in secondaries); what music she likes and what she's scared of. Visitors can add their own reviews of her books and ask questions.

Poet, novelist, actor, playwright, campaigner on race issues and animal rights - and massive football fan, Benjamin Zephaniah has a slick website, www.benjaminzephaniah.com, which features material for "kidz" and "teenz" and includes videos of his music performances.

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