Lambs, Forthcoming Events, and a Good Cause.

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Hope you all had excellent Easters (if you go in for that sort of thing) and ate too much chocolate, as I did. Spring has come to Dartmoor and, thanks to the hard work of all our farming friends and neighbours, the hills are alive with this sort of thing...

Ahhh, etc. Photo: Sarah Reeve
Meanwhile, I've just written my final guest post for the ever-excellent Girls Heart Books blog. It's called Get Ahead - Get a Hat, and it's about ways to overcome shyness when, as a writer, you suddenly find yourself called upon to get up and be performer too...

'Make the scary people go away!' etc. Photo: Jo Cotterill
It also seems a good moment to mention that Sarah McIntyre will be performing, hats and all, at the Hay Festival on 29th May. We're taking part in an event called The Big Draw, with Horrible Histories illustrator Martin Brown (we did this once before at Hay, and it went really well, so fingers crossed that we can repeat it this year).  And we'll also be doing our Oliver and the Seawigs event, which, after many months on the road, has been honed to something like perfection, hem hem - there's even an outside chance that I might remember the chords in the Sea Monkey song.

And we'll also be appearing at Manchester Children's Book Festival on June 28th. Sarah's Sea Monkeys crop up all over the festival website, and there's even going to be a Grand Parade of Seawigs. I'm not entirely sure, but I think this might be the last completely Seawigs-themed event we do before we switch into Cakes in Space mode for the late summer and autumn festivals. So if you're in or near Manchester, do come along! (There are loads of other things going on in the festival, too.)


Lastly but definitely not leastly, Tim Knight (who runs ace gaming/comics/TV/general geekery blog Heropress and has been a great supporter of my books over the years) will be doing a sponsored walk next weekend to raise money for the Stroke Association. Tim's wife Rachel gives a sobering account of some of his reasons for doing so here. If you'd like to contribute, donations can be made here. Best wishes on the walk, Tim, from all Goblins, Sea Monkeys, Traction Citizens, and me.

We'er All OfF to SuNy SPaNE...

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...ElviVa EsPAnA! 

HeLo SofFtlinGs, the GoBBlinS of CloVenstOne heRe.  SoRry wee havs noTt bloGged for a longg tIme,  wee havs beEn busy doin a DIFFIKULT POO.

AnnywAy, here wee iz, to letT you kNo thatT GOBLINNS havs been pubBlisshed in suny SPANE, which is a skware countRy stUck on to tHe side of FRANCE. It is famUrse for GondoLas, BLue Fighting, and the Eiffefel TOWER, aNd nOw the soFftlinGs whoO livEs thEr caN reAd GOBBLINS tOo.  LoOk at thIs FaTNAstiCk coVer by Monica ArmiñO



WeE doN't whY shE havs put thOse soFftlinGs on itt whEn she could haVs bEen draWing hanDsom GOBbLINS, butT sHe havs doNe a LoVelTY paWtrate of KInG KnOBBlER On the BACK so wee wil LetT her oFf.


WeE hOpes yoO enjoYS the StoRy, SpAnish sofFtlinGs. Wee haVs notT redd it oursElfvs becos fraNkly weE could noTt be BOVVERED, buTt wee havs hErd iTt is VERRY GOoD.

And in OTHER NOOWS, thEr is a noo GoBBliNS burk cOmin out in tHe UK tOo!  ITt is calLed GObBLIN KWEST an itT wil be puBlishisHed in JOON. LoOk: itT is YELLO.


The Badness of Badgers

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Sam has been really enjoying the latest book from John Dougherty.  I haven't read it yet myself, so I got him to write a few words about it. He says:


"This book is called Stinkbomb and Ketchup Face and the Badness of Badgers. It is about two kids called Stinkbomb and Ketchup Face who live on the island of Great Kerfuffle near the village of Loose Chippings. The island’s king is called King Toothbrush Weasel. The story is about what happens when Stinkbomb thinks badgers have stolen his £10 note. They get into lots of trouble involving sports cars, dustbins, and a frightened chicken.

I thought the book was really enjoyable to read. It had great pictures and the characters were very nicely thought up. My favourite character was Stinkbomb he was very witty and funny. The illustrations were really inspiring. The illustrator was David Tazzyman. I laughed like a kid who's just seen a grown man fall off his bicycle."

The Badness of Badgers is published by OUP, and a sequel, The Quest for the Magic Porcupine will be coming out in August.




Meanwhile, Sarah McIntyre were at the Cambridge Literary Festival this weekend. It turned into a bit of a trip down memory lane, as I found myself outside No. 5 Ainsworth Street, which was the first place I lived when I left home to go to college, and also met writer Helen Dennis, who went to the same Brighton schools as I did (St Lukes and Stanley Deason). Photos and a full report here, along with an excellent Easter Bonnet wheeze.


New Book News

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Here's some news from this week's Bologna Book Fair.

It's far too early to talk about this novel. It isn't yet finished, and won't be published until 2015, so I shan't be mentioning it again until nearer release date. But I'm very pleased it will be published by OUP, who have done such a superb job on the Reeve & McIntyre books, and I'm looking forward to working again with the wonderful Liz Cross, who was the first reader and editor of Mortal Engines.

And for those of you who would like me to be writing vast science fiction epics about sprawling future worlds as well as having fun with Goblins and Seawigs, there is now light at the end of the tunnel. (NB: It may be an oncoming train...)




From the Bookseller