Children’s and youth literature

DESETNICA (The Tenth Child)

Desetnica is an award for children’s and youth literature awarded by the Slovene Writers’ Association in honour of making original children’s and youth literature recognizable both within the Slovene Writers’ Association and among the general public.
The Desetnica Award is intended for a wider recognition and asserting of children’s and youth literature within SWA, among professional literary critics, and among the public. Original children’s and youth literature has now been at a high level of quality for a period of decades and is one of the most frequently read sorts of national literature. At the same time, original children’s and youth literature represents the basis for creating reading habits; it represents the basis for forming the love of reading. The need for this peer award is quite understandable, since it is one of the basic steps to finally ensuring that youth literature is equal in state to non-youth literature, within the Slovene Writers’ Association and among the general public.
The Desetnica Award for best children’s and youth work in poetry or prose is awarded by the Slovene Writers ‘Association each year in May for the period of the previous three years, exclusively to members of the Slovene Writers’ Association, that write in Slovenian. The Award is granted on the basis of a selection prepared by an expert in youth literature, and the final selection is decided upon by a five-to seven-member jury combined of youth and non-youth authors that are exclusively members of the Slovene Writers’ Association. No member of the jury can be simultaneously a candidate or an Award recipient.
The Desetnica Award is sponsored by the Prešernova družba of Ljubljana.

Desetnica Award Winners:

2020 – Jana Bauer, Ding dong zgodbe
2019 – Andrej Rozman Roza, Pesmi iz galerije
2018 – Aksinja Kermauner, Žiga špaget je za punce magnet
2018 – Suzana Tratnik, Tombola ali življenje!
2017 – Vinko Möderndorfer, Kit na plaži
2016 – Marjana Moškrič, Sanje o belem štrpedu
2015 – Mate Dolenc, Mali princ z otoka
2014 – Vinko Möderndorfer, Kot v filmu
2013 – Janja Vidmar, Kebarie
2012 – Feri Lainšček, Pesmi o Mišku in Belamiški
2011 – Bina Štampe Žmavc, Cesar in roža
2011 – Milan Dekleva, Pesmarica prvih besed
2010 – Dim Zupan, Hektor in male ljubezni: zgodba nekega Hektorja
2009 – Marjana Moškrič, Stvar
2008 – Andrej Rozman Roza, Kako je Oskar postal detektiv
2007 – Bina Štampe Žmavc, Živa hiša
2006 – Janja Vidmar, Zoo
2005 – Slavko Pregl, Usodni telefon
2004 – Mate Dolenc, Leteča ladja


Jana Bauer, desetnica 2020

We invite the word

A programme of the Slovene Writers’ Association financed by the Slovenian Agency for Books.

Since 1996, the Slovene Writers’ Association has been organizing and coordinating an educational programme entitled We Invite The Word. The purpose of the project is to stimulate interest in Slovene literature among children and youth, especially readers in preschool, primary school, secondary school, and college.

All the members of the Slovene Writers’ Association are included in the program We Invite The Word. The purpose of writers’ meetings with young people is of a literary nature. In coordination with schools and libraries, the writers attempt to draw children nearer to literature with their work and their creative process.

During the meetings, young readers are engaged through games, interpretations, and other methods. The goal of the encounters is to be imaginative and dynamic (conversation, interactive workshops, audio-visual elements, narration through movement, music…).
The Slovene Writers’ Association uses the resources of the

We Invite the Word programme to finance the visits of authors to a preschool, primary school, secondary school, residence, or library during the calendar year. Each author holds up to three performances or workshops.

The authors of the Slovene Writers’ Association who participate in the programme receive travel expenses and honorarium.
We wish for inspiring and interesting encounters between Slovenian writers and their young readers!



Slovenia′s Best for Young Readers 2020

Catalogue of Slovenian Authors for Young Readers published the Slovene Writers’ Association with the support of the Slovenian Book Agency, edited by Dr. Dragica Haramija,  representing 44 authors.

Literary encounters for children and youth


dr. Aksinja Kermauner

The Section for Children and Young Adult Literature of the Slovene Writers’ Association was established in 2004 with the purpose of introducing and popularizing children and young adult literature in Slovenia, the Slovene borderlands, and foreign countries. The office of the Slovene Writers’ Association, in collaboration with top literary writers for children and young adults, prepares and presents literary events and interactive meetings, cooperates in literary manifestations in Slovene and international venues, promotes a culture of reading, and participates in public debates about conditions in the field of culture and other important issues in Slovene society related to children’s and adult literature in Slovenia and the Slovene borderlands.
The programme fluently and successfully collaborates with the Slovene sections of the IBBY, MKL, and the Pioneer House centres for Young Adult Literature and Library Activities, the Reading Associations of Slovenia, and the Association of Reading Groups of Slovenia – ZPMS, the Maribor Library, the magazine Otrok in knjiga (Child and Book), and other organizations working in the field of children and young adult culture and literature.


Vodnik’s Homestead, HišA branja pisanja in pripovedovanja (the House of Reading, Writing, and Storytelling) and programme partner of the Slovene Writers’ Association, runs a scrupulously prepared children’s programme. Its primary purpose is to promote books, reading, and storytelling among the youngest readers and their families. Before the event, the families read at the Knjižnica pod krošnjami (Library Beneath the Trees). After the event, there is always time for recording or drawing impressions, a conversation with the children in the reading room of the homestead, or to read and leaf through books. The Slovene Writers’ Association includes in the programme interactive meeting with children and creators of literature for children and young adults.


The “Booking” contest with the title MOJ NAJLJUBŠI SLOVENSKI KNJIŽEVNI LIK (MY FAVORITE SLOVENE LITERARY CHARACTER) was first held from March 1 to May 1, 2015 at primary schools around Slovenia and in the borderlands. Pupils were invited to create handcrafted puppets or marionettes of their favourite hero or heroine from Slovene literature. The contest – which is run by the Section for Children and Young Adult Literature of the Slovene Writers’ Association in collaboration with the Reading Association of Slovenia, the Association of Reading Groups of Slovenia, ZPMS, and IBBY Slovenia – strives to encourage interest in children’s and young adult literature among young readers-creators. The committee (members in 2015 were Jelena Cvetko Sitar, Dr. Aksinja Kermauner, Jana Kolarič, Andrej Predin, and Savina Zwitter) select the best puppets and the pupils-artists are invited with their mentors to the award ceremony and literary programme in the quarters of the Slovene Writers’ Association at 12 Tomšičeva. On that occasion, there was a display of the books in which the favourite depicted characters appeared.

Many children and young people visit the Slovene Writer’s Association in the context of its programme for children and young adults. It is fun for them to come and meet their favourite prose writers and poets.