Monday, 15 December 2008

A New Poem...


Everybody ran from me,
Snatching my dignity.
But it wasn't as if I'd take their heads on which to feed,
Now my boss was no longer Snakeweed.

Friends were new to me
And Turpsik, she was no beauty!
But she was a friend to me
For all to see!

When I crossed the divide I had so many feasts
So I wrote my book Dining out on Mythical Beasts.
My book created such a buzz
I now work in the library with Betony, Thornbeak, and Granitefuzz.

I'm a peaceful being as you can see
Now I must mention, Turpsik put this poem together for me!

Declaimed by Grimspite, and then written down by Turpsik, who passed it on to Yehudit Charin, (aged 10) from London, England.

Monday, 24 November 2008

Christmas present idea...

If you've given copies of The Divide Trilogy to everyone you know, how about an RSPB membership as a Christmas present with a difference? You can find out about it here:

Monday, 27 October 2008

Interesting spelling, and Fury gets longlisted...

This is another photograph from Venezuela. The Angel Falls drop from a table-top mountain called a tepui, which was what Sir Arthur Conan Doyle used as the setting for a certain book... Have a look at the poster I snapped, and see if you know what it was.

And I probably ought to add that my last book, Fury, has been longlisted for United Kingdom Literary Association Children's Book Award, 2009, in the 12 - 16 caegory.

Wednesday, 15 October 2008

Dear Pewtermane,
Is a Sinistrom allowed to change its name? My previous owner didn't respect me in any way and when he crossed into the Divide he had my pebble. Grimspite really inspired me to be a better Sinistrom, so if I can, where can I go to change my name? Please!

Hiya Bloodclaws -
Cool name! Why do you want to change it? I think you should invest in some bright red nail polish, and go for the whole look.
Cheers, Lilywithers
pp Pewtermane


Haven't been able to post much
recently as I've just moved house, and been on holiday in Venezuela.

Here's a selection of photographs...

Tuesday, 26 August 2008

It really IS all right this time...

The links are back to normal, folks. For those of you who are interested in British birds of prey, the RSPB has put tracking devices on the two osprey chicks who hatched in Loch Garten this year - Deshar and Nethy. To find out how to follow their migration, go to this link for directions:

I haven't taken any photos of ospreys, but I do have a nice one of an eagle owl...

Tuesday, 12 August 2008

But not quite...

If you're trying to get hold of me, the contact link isn't working at the moment. Please e-mail me on
And here's my picture of a butterfly called a gatekeeper...

Wednesday, 30 July 2008

All as it should be, once more.

Thanks to my ever helpful web host, (manned by real people), I now have my domain name back again.

Did anyone watch Lost Land of the Jaguar, on BBC1 last night? Tremendous stuff, with howler monkeys and piranhas and even a jaguar. I snapped this capybara at Marwell Zoo, to give this post the right sort of South American flavour...

Wednesday, 9 July 2008

A Plug for the Cotswold Wildlife Park

I love lemurs - they're only found in Madagascar and the surrounding islands, and there are several different species. They're primates - like monkeys, apes and us. The Cotswold Wildlife Park has recently opened its Madagascar exhibit, where you can walk through a planted area full of Madagascan birds and lemurs. It's absolutely delightful - I took this photograph there, and I would like to recommend it to everyone.

My website is now back up, although it currently only works as, and not, as printed in my books.

Wednesday, 2 July 2008

Website troubles

If you've reached here by some circuitous route and can't link back to my website, it's because it's down for the moment. I hope to have it back up and running soon - in the meantime, if you want to contact me, use

Tuesday, 3 June 2008


The Hay-on-Wye Festival is a treat for all book lovers, although the weather this year was absoutley frightful, and the car park was a mud wallow. This is me signing autographs with Penny Dolan, whose latest book The Third Elephant, published in 2007, is all about a little wooden elephant who follows his dream... to India!

The kids we met were extremely nice, too - there are so many avid readers out there, who ask really tricky questions and expect really good answers...

Saturday, 24 May 2008

Lilywithers advises...

Dear Lilywithers,
I'm a carrionwing, and my absolute FAVE hobby is screeching in thunderstorms.You want to hear my problem? One word: TONSILITIS! Help!

Hiya, Stormcrow.
Whatever you do, don't be tempted to try one of Snakeweed's remedies. Tripleheads recommend pukeberry sauce as a cure for just about everything, but I think you should just shut up for a bit.
Cheers, Lilywithers

Tuesday, 13 May 2008

Back again!

The hot sunny weather has been good news for snakes. I haven't seen anything of the adders this year yet, but I watched a grass snake hunting for over an hour. It didn't catch anything, though.

Another problem for Lilywithers

Dear Lilywithers, I'm a female brazzle. I'm only young, so my historian skills aren't amazing, but I am a bit of a perfectionist. I had spent ages using my father's dirtboard to write out historical facts about spells and things like that, and when I had finished I showed my father. It was the first big fact page I had ever written so my he gave me a big celebration. I was so proud of myself that I read through it all again, and I spotted a MISTAKE!!! It was terrible! Now I'm checking my work through so much that I'm working really slowly... I know it's not much, but I get a panic attack every time I think that I've done something wrong...PLEASE HELP ME!!Thunderwing

Hi Thunderwing, You need to learn to chill out. Try having a dust bath. Dirt boards have other uses too, you know!
Cheers, Lilywithers

Thursday, 8 May 2008

The Worrit - a poem

Different ears,
a sausage tongue
When you fall down laughing
you know it has won.

One eye green
one eye yellow
full of hilarity
that can kill a fellow.

Erica Gardner
Almost Twelve (but not quite)
Michigan, U.S.A.

A problem for Lilywithers

Dear Pewtermane, I'm a brittlehorn just like you, but my horn doesn't seem to shine as brightly as all of the other brittlehorns. In fact, it hardly shines at all. I've tried meditating on it, but the answer just isn't coming. I have cleaned it, polished it, asked a female brazzle if she thought my ancestors might've had this problem, asked a budding herbalist named Betony...Nothing works! Is there some sort of magical ointment that I haven't yet tried, some special incantation? Please help, the other young brittlehorns are teasing me!Yours,Featherhoof.

Hiya Featherhoof - I'm Lilywithers, and I'm doing Pewtermane's column while he meditates on the nature of an itch. Your mates are seriously out of touch - horns that don't shine are really cool this season. I suggest you muddy-up your hooves to match, and tell them all to go roll in a dunghill!

Cheers, Lilywithers

Saturday, 26 April 2008

What do children's writers do at the weekend?

Children's writers meet one another at all sorts of events - festivals, book launches, conferences -and they're a friendly lot. This means that they tend to get together at other times, too, and this weekend Susan Price and I did just that and had a whale of a time trying out some stocks. All in the name of research, of course! Susan's latest book, Feasting The Wolf, was published last year by Usborne. It's a dramatic story of courage and honour, set in the time of the Vikings, and it will keep you hooked right to the end.

Tuesday, 22 April 2008

Baby birds...

All baby animals are cute - and baby birds can be absolutely gorgeous. Because birds that fly have to fledge before they leave the nest, they don't look all that different to their parents. They need their wing feathers before they can get out and about. But birds that swim and birds that run are a different matter. We don't have ostriches or cassowaries or emus in England, but we do have lots of ducks and geese and swans...

Tuesday, 25 March 2008

Spring is here... well, nearly...

I thought I'd show you a couple of plants that make a change from daffodils and tulips. They are both insectivorous plants - they grow in poor soil and get most of their nutrition from insects. The monster on the left is the biggest pitcher plant in the world, and I used it as one of the jinx box's disguises in Jinx on the Divide. The plant below is the biggest flower in the world, and it smells even worse than a sinistrom. It's called Rafflesia. I took both of these photographs when I was in Borneo in 2004.

Monday, 25 February 2008

Unauthorised Links

Two messages were posted on my previous entry here, both of which had links pasted in. As I do not know either of the authors of these, I have deleted them without opening them in case they were carrying viruses. If you want a link from my site, please e-mail me personally through the contact page on the main website, explaining your reasons.

Friday, 22 February 2008

Author visits

I'm sometimes asked if I do author visits to schools, book groups, festivals and library events, and the answer is - yes. I live in the south-east of England, and I'm willing to travel anywhere in that region. But I also have friends I like to visit in different parts of the country, and so other areas are possible too. For details of what I do, visit the Scattered Authors Website.

Tuesday, 5 February 2008

My latest book

Fury, my new book, will be published by Barrington Stoke on 22nd March. It's about a girl who lets the Furies of Ancient Greece escape into our world through a crack in an old pot... There's a link to it on Amazon. below. This is a stand-alone book, rather than the beginning of a series.

Friday, 4 January 2008

Best wishes for the new year

I hope 2008 is a good year for you all - I have a new book coming out in March, called Fury. It's published by Barrington Stoke, and I'll post more details closer to the time.

New writing classes I'm teaching this term - at the Leatherhead Institute, Surrey, starting at 7.30pm on 14th January - telephone 01634 298600, and at The Malden Centre, Surrey, starting at 1.00pm on 17th January, telephone 020 8336 7770.