Chickens in Manchester!

Chicken House came north yesterday. Well, I say ‘north’, but Manchester’s not north really, is it? For those of us who live in Newcastle, anything on the wrong south side of the river is  . . . well, south. And anyone who watches Game of Thrones knows that north = honest, tough and honourable, while south = well, if you watch it, you’ll know what south means.

Anyway, the event was a huge success – as Chicken House events always are. The room was filled with librarians and booksellers and bloggers, as well as an excellent collection of authors including Melvin Burgess, David Massey, Sam Hepburn, Fletcher Moss and Stuart Hill. Oh, and I also had the chance to meet fellow ‘Allsorts-er’ the lovely Kate Ormand, who had bravely come along and thrown herself into a room full of people she didn’t know – which must have been terribly daunting. Annie Everall from Authors Aloud was there too, and even the Book Witch came along (there are more details and photos of the event on her blog). Cat and hat were left at home though, and the witch came by train rather than broomstick, so I’m not convinced she was really a witch at all.

Oh, and making our way from one venue to another, I was lucky enough to have Melvin Burgess on hand to lug a box of My Friend The Enemy proofs for me. It was a warm day and saved me from developing an unsightly glow.



Over there, Burgess, put them over there!


That’s all.



Proofs and Allsorts

Phew – it’s been a busy few weeks.

Page proofs for My Friend The Enemy? Check.

Page proofs for Red Winter? Check.

Sift Judging for writing competition? Check.

School visits? Check.

And now it’s time to get this next novel written.

I finished the first draft of my next children’s book just over a week ago. As usual, I came away from it in a bit of a daze, wondering what it was going to look like when I read through it. You see, there was something about it that just didn’t feel quite right. A blip that was niggling at me.  A character who needed more room to breathe, maybe, or an extra layer of the story that was trying to be noticed. Something . . . something . . .

Aha! That’s it! This morning I noticed it. There it was, staring me right in the face. A photograph that was hiding behind the others, just out of view. And now it feels like everything in the story connects in just the right way. It all clicks into place.

Which is nice.

And as if that wasn’t enough excitement for one week (I’m really spoiling you guys), I’m now part of a group of authors and illustrators of children’s and YA books. We’ll be blogging and sharing our  . . . well, our everything.

No, stop it. Not that.

Anyway, you can read all about us over at AuthorAllsorts and there’s a massive, bumper, huge, mahoosive giveaway of books – including a signed proof copy of My Friend The Enemy.

Oh yeah.





That’s all.