Secret Staff Meeting Interview…

Secret Staff Meeting Interview…

Two weeks ago I went to do a workshops with A Tale Unfolds as part of a new Readingzone project that will be coming soon to help children create book trailers for their favourite books in classrooms. We had a fantastic time at Copenhagen School in Islington working with the kids to create a trailer for Cogheart 

Afterwards Dom from A Tale Unfolds asked if I would like to do an interview for their ongoing youtube series: The Secret Staff Meeting, which is aimed at introducing authors to teachers. Here are the results. We chatted about how I got my start in writing, my background in film, the books and how I write them, things I think should be taught in schools, and my new book Skycircus. You can check out the interview below…

Skycircus Cover revealed…

Skycircus Cover revealed…

On July the third the beautiful cover for the third Cogheart book: Skycircus was revealed by Scott Evans over on his blog: thereaderteacher.com

It was designed by Kath Millichope and illustrated by  and the special circus animation was done by me…

So without further ado, Ladies and Gentlemen, boy and girls, welcome to the

The book is to be published on the fourth of October 2018.

 

If you love pinterest, you can take a look at some of the inspiration for the ideas and characters in the book, here…

And below you can see the youtube version of the cover animation with the Circus music that Usborne provided…

 

Cogheart wins Awesome Book Award 2018

Cogheart wins Awesome Book Award 2018

I am delighted to announce that on the third of May (over a month ago now, but I am a woeful blogger) Cogheart won the Awesome Book Award 2018!!

ERICA’S ELEPHANT

RADIO BOY

THE GOLDFISH BOY

THE SECRET OF NIGHTINGALE WOO

The book was up against some stiff competition in the form of: Erica’s Elephant by Sylvia Bishop, Radio Boy by Christian O’Connell, The Secret of Nightingale Wood by Lucy Strange, Goldfish Boy by Lisa Thompson, and so I was walking on air when Cogheart was finally announced the winner!

It was a fabulous event organised by and taking place at Cranleigh Prep, with book sales from Pea Green Boat Books. You can read more about the evening here, on the Awesome Book Awards Website.

But in the meantime here are a few of the pictures taken by the photographer from Cranleigh Prep…

Lily’s School report and a recipe for toasted teacakes

Lily’s School report and a recipe for toasted teacakes

I discovered these the other day- some fabulous pieces of artwork that Usborne created for Cogheart when they were pitching for the book – my favourite is Lily’s school report – from Lady Octavia Scrimshaw’s Young Ladies Academy, where she is holed up at the start of the story. As you can see from her teacher’s notes, she is really no the best of students…

Cogheart Makes the World Book Day Favourites Shortlist

Cogheart Makes the World Book Day Favourites Shortlist

 

I am delighted to announce that Cogheart is on the shortlist for the 9-12 favourite books selection for World Book Day 2018, along with some fab recent releases and all time classics!

They’ve split the list into 4 different categories, & to kick off they’re asking schools, bookshops, libraries & other booky people to reveal THEIR favourite stories.

Here’s the link to go vote, *hem Hem* you know what to do!

Nakręceni – Cogheart in Polish

Nakręceni – Cogheart in Polish

Check it out…

You can now get a copy of Nakręceni – which is Cogheart in Polish – from Akapit Press. Moonlocket is coming in 2018…

Nakręceni

Życie 13-letniej Lily znalazło się w śmiertelnym niebezpieczeństwie. Jej ojciec zaginął podczas rutynowego lotu samolotem, a w ciemnościach czają się tajemnicze srebrnookie postacie. Skąd się tu wzięły i czego mogą chcieć?

Lily w towarzystwie swoich przyjaciół – Roberta, syna zegarmistrza, oraz Malkina, mechanicznego lisa – przekracza próg innego, mrocznego wymiaru. Wkrótce jednak przekona się, że życie może się zmienić w ułamku sekundy, a ci, którzy wydawali się najdrożsi jej sercu, teraz mogą to serce najboleśniej złamać…

Dreszcz emocji, detektywistyczna intryga i zagadki – to wszystko znajdziesz w tej porywającej wiktoriańskiej przygodzie.

 

Księżycowy medalion

 

Nad Lily i Robertem znów gromadzą się czarne chmury, kiedy na scenę wkracza przestępca doskonały – słynny sztukmistrz Jack Door, nazywany Waletem Karo.

Jack, specjalizujący się w spektakularnych ucieczkach, wydostaje się z więzienia w Pentonville i zmierza prosto do Brackenbridge. Zbieg poszukuje tajemniczego Księżycowego Medalionu, ale to nie jedyna rzecz, jakiej pragnie.

Mroczne sekrety z przeszłości Roberta sprowadzają na niego wielkie niebezpieczeństwo. Iluzjonista wciąga go w okrutną rozgrywkę, a czasu jest coraz mniej. Lily i Malkin muszą znaleźć sposób, aby pokrzyżować plany Jacka, zanim w talii na stole pojawi się ostatnia, zabójcza karta…

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Cogheart nominated for the CILIP Carnegie Medal

Cogheart nominated for the CILIP Carnegie Medal

I am delighted to announce that Cogheart has made the nomination list for the Carnegie Medal in the CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Awards. The CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medals are the UK’s oldest and most prestigious children’s book awards, unique in that they are judged solely by librarians. It’s an awards list that authors like to talk about, and I am just really chuffed that my book has made the nominations because it is on there along with some of my favourite contemporary children’s authors and their most amazing books!

Plus the roll-call of past winners include some of my favourite authors of all time: Arthur Ransome, C.S. Lewis, Terry Pratchett, Philip Pullman, Noel Streatfeild, Sally Gardner and Penelope Lively for the Carnegie; and Raymond Briggs, Shirley Hughes, Janet Ahlberg, Lauren Child and former Children’s Laureates Quentin Blake and Anthony Browne, as well as current Laureate Chris Riddell for the Kate Greenaway accolade.

The CILIP Carnegie Medal is awarded by children’s librarians for an outstanding book written in English for children and young people.

The CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal is awarded by children’s librarians for an outstanding book in terms of illustration for children and young people.

The longlist is announced on the 15th of February and the shortlist on the 15th March, then the winner is announced on the 18th of June 2018.

You can see the whole Carnegie nomination list here…

And the nomination list for the Kate Greenaway Award, which is an award for illustrated picture books, here…

Moonlocket Nominated for the Books Are My Bag Readers awards

Moonlocket Nominated for the Books Are My Bag Readers awards

I am DELIGHTED to announce that MOONLOCKET has been NOMINATED for the BOOKS ARE MY BAG READERS AWARD.

It’s an fantastically strong list, so if you LOVED the book please go and VOTE FOR IT HERE !!

The Books Are My Bag Readers Awards are one of a kind. They’re the only book awards with shortlists curated by bookshops – and the only major awards voted for by booklovers. Moonlocket is up for the Middle-Grade Category against some amazing books by many writers who I truly admire and I am honoured to be nominated along with them. Please go and vote. There are six fabulous books in the running and book token prizes up for grabs too!


 

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Cogheart Summer Events

Cogheart Summer Events

I haven’t posted anything for a while on these blog pages, because I have been so busy writing book three. There have actually been a few things I wanted to blog about to do with writing, but I haven’t had the time, yet. Hopefully soon, however.

In the mean time here are some pictures from Cogheart and Moonlocket events that took place over the summer – June and July mostly as I have tried to keep the whole of August free for writing.

On the 5th of July it was the Branford Boase Awards, which honours editors and writers together, and it was lovely to be there with my amazing editor Rebecca Hill, who on the same day was one of the Rising Stars at the Bookseller Awards. Here are a few pictures of the evening, congratulations to the winners, MG Leonard, Barry Cunningham and Rachel Leshon. The best thing about the evening is that there’s also an award for young writer – some of their fantastic short stories were read out – and at the end of the evening they receive copies of all the nominated books, so afterwards you get to meet them when they come up to ask for your signature.

In the last weeks of July I had a couple of final school events. Here are a few picture from my visit to King Edward’s Girls School in Birmingham on the 6th of July, where the year 7 girls had made lots of amazing artwork based on Cogheart as part of their end of year project…

On the 10th of July I visited Ashfield School in Kirkby where the Year 8s were doing a whole day of Cogheart themed events, I went and talked with them all and signed some books. And they had even made some airships…

Then on the 12th of July I was at the Warwickshire Junior Book Awards with Ross Welford who wrote Time Travelling with a Hamster, and Sue Durrant who wrote Little Bits of Sky. Congratulations to Sue, who won the award. It was fun day, especially seeing Ross’s magic act, and meeting all the students afterwards, who came to get their books signed.

On the 24th of July I was at Brentwood Literary Festival organised by the lovely Natasha of Chicken and Frog Bookshop and I got to meet some more readers and teach a little bit of animation at the end of my talk, which I haven’t done for a while!

Finally on the third of August I had afternoon tea with the winner of the Authorfy  Cogheart afternoon tea competition Megan Nichols and her friends, as well as Authorfy organisers Mel and Emily. Megan is an avid reader and book blogger. It was a great fun afternoon – thanks Mel and Emily for organising everything – and you can read all about that day, because Megan has written a post all about it on her Munchkin Megan book blog here…