Wednesday, 23 December 2009

Happy Christmas/solstice/new year, everyone.

Friday, 18 December 2009

Ariel Lopez

I've had a lovely letter forwarded to me from someone called Ariel Lopez, but there's no return address so I can't reply. If you know of anyone by that name, please could you tell them this? Thanks!

Saturday, 28 November 2009

Kids' Lit Quiz

A great time was had by all at the Kids' Lit Quiz Final in Oxford on Friday. I wonder if any of you know the answer to this question, which was posed by ace quizmaster Wayne Mills?

"Which books begins with the words: The rat-tat-tat of the helicopter's rotor blades scattered the hummingbirds across the Study Centre garden as though someone had thrown a handful of jewels into the air..."

Hm. Tricky one...

Saturday, 31 October 2009

Sold Out!!! have sold out of Missing Link, as have online Borders. It's still available through Waterstones online shop - and, of course, at the reading at Malden Centre on 7th November.

Saturday, 24 October 2009

Doing anything on the 7th November?

I'm giving a talk about how Missing Link came to be written - a gripping tale of a television game show, subversive presenters, and stick insects. I'll be showing a clip of me on the TV programme that started me thinking, talking about the writing process, giving a reading from the book, and signing copies. If you're in the New Malden area at 12.30 on Saturday, 7th November, come into The Malden Centre and say hello (but not too loudly while I'm in the middle of a reading...) The Malden Centre is in Blagdon Road, New Malden, Surrey - KT3 4TA - and is a five minute walk from the railway station.

Monday, 19 October 2009


This is me, wearing my Mongolian dress and signing copies of MISSING LINK at Epsom Waterstones on Saturday, 17th October. If you missed it, there will be another chance to hear a reading from the book and have your copy signed. This will be at The Malden Centre, Blagdon Road, KT3 4TA, on Saturday 7th November. The reading - and a talk about how the book came to be written - will be in the studio, from 12.30 - 1.30, and the signing in the foyer from 1.30 - 3.00.

Tuesday, 6 October 2009

Pre-publication launch of Read Away!

From left to right: Pippa Goodhart, Stephanie Baudet, David Webb and me.
Unfortunately Caroline Dunford couldn't be there. Many thanks to Borders for providing the venue.

Thursday, 3 September 2009


I've just spent two weeks in Mongolia. The nomads are the friendliest, most generous people I've met anywhere in the world, and I had marvellous time. I'll post some more pictures in due course!

Sunday, 26 July 2009


I went badger-watching on Saturday. It was absolutely brilliant - at one point there were seven badgers, all foraging within a few feet of the hide. I also saw a buzzard and a hare. Watching wildlife for real is so much better than seeing it on TV - you never know what will happen next. You could be the very first person ever to see something completely new! The place I went to has a website - see here

Monday, 29 June 2009

Creative writing courses

I'm going to be teaching two writing courses in the summer holidays.

From Monday 27th July to Friday 31st July I'll be teaching a general creative writing class for kids aged 10+ at The Malden Centre, in Surrey. For more information telephone 020 8336 7770.

From Monday 3rd to Friday 7th August I'll be teaching a fantasy writing course in Kingston. For details, click here THIS COURSE IS FREE!!!

These classes are great fun - see you there!

Wednesday, 10 June 2009

And here's the missus...

It's been quite a nice summer for snakes so far. Here's a female adder, sunning herself.

For those in the area, I shall be teaching a children's creative writing course at The Malden Centre, KT3 4TA, from Monday 27th July to Friday 31st July, from 10 - 12 each morning. Phone: 0208 336 7770.

Wednesday, 20 May 2009

I wonder if this would look nice on the nest...

There are dozens of baby sparrows in the garden, being fed by both mum and dad. This goldfinch caught my eye, as it inspected the lawn for either breakfast, or suitable nesting material. I do think they're one of our prettiest birds.

Monday, 11 May 2009

Not too bothered...

This fox didn't even move out of the way when I walked past! I saw a pair of roe deer yesterday, but unfortunately I didn't have my camera with me. This was a pity, as once I stood absolutely still they became quite curious.

Tuesday, 14 April 2009

Spring's here!

The adders are back... They've woken up after the winter, they've shed their skins and they're full of attitude!

Thursday, 5 March 2009

Even more snow...

I have just got back from Krakow, in Poland. The gold-domed roof on the right can be seen at Wawel Castle, where there is a terrific armoury with all sorts of swords and shields and cannons. I also spent a day in Zakopane, in the mountains, where there was four metres of snow! It was extremely beautiful.

And hello to Harlands School, where I'll be on Monday. Let's hope the weather's a bit kinder, although I do like snowballs and snowmen and sledging and skating and ski-ing... have you noticed that most of the words connected with snow begin with an S?

Wednesday, 4 February 2009

Suggestions wanted...

I'm currently working on a rescue plan for the authors held captive in a cave... Pay the site a visit, and let me know what weapons I should be considering...

Thursday, 29 January 2009

Please, please please...

If you are writing to me c/o my publisher, please make sure the return name and address are legible. I always answer letters, but if I can't read where to send my reply there's nothing I can do. And remember - if you live abroad, your letter may have to be forwarded to me in England, so it may be a while before you hear from me. And if your e-mail didn't get through to me, try and send it again, with a different heading. My filter may have decided you were spam!

Friday, 16 January 2009

Hunted, and Darren the Dragon

Hunted, my latest book, is published by Barrington Stoke on the 22nd January 2009.

There is also the first part of a Divide story in the magazine Aquila this month, called Darren the Dragon. Aquila is only available on subscription, but they have a website -

Tuesday, 13 January 2009

A heavy frost...

Sometimes a heavy frost can be even more beautiful than snow. I took this picture near where I live.

And those of you who take Aquila magazine - this month, there's the first of a two-part story set in the magical world on the other side of The Divide.

Wednesday, 7 January 2009

Happy New Year!

I don't seem to be able to upload any pictures at the moment, but it's very cold here and it's been snowing. Anyhow - I hope 2009 is everything you wish for.