Maurice Sendak (the curmudgeonly creator of, among other things, ‘Where the Wild Things Are’) was recently interviewed on The Colbert Report. (For anyone who hasn’t heard of the show, it’s essentially a parody of right-wing political broadcasting; Fox News etc.)
Anyway, the interview was spread across two episodes (season 9 episodes 13/14) and were a real treat. Sendak was a real match for the witty Colbert and was perftly able to give as good as he got. At one stage, Colbert quipped that he believed that kids “are just biding their time until we’re gone and then they get our stuff.”
As I mentioned briefly in this earlier blog, my book has been chosen to be the featured book in the inaugural ‘Children Save Dublin’ reading project. The initiative has been established by UNESCO Dublin City of Literature – (the people behind the hugely successful ‘One City, One Book’ project) – and will run from today right up to the end of March. There are lots of events planned for the duration of the festival. I’ll be giving workshops in libraries, schools and bookshops and Michael Moylan of Irish History Live will be bringing his Viking History show to various locations around the city. The project culminates with a huge event as part of the St Patricks Festival. We’re going to have a train parked in Connolly Station, designed to look like the World Serpent itself. Each carriage will host a different fun event – (I’ll be there giving workshops and more!)
This morning I could be seen at Stephens Green for a photo call. Why, you ask. Well it for the launch of the UNESCO Dublin City Of Literature reading project “Children Save Dublin”, that is encouraging children between the ages of 8 and 13 to read my book. There will be some big events throughout and I will blog about it properly later but for now, here are a couple of images of a Viking with Arthur and Ash!
A while ago, I was asked to write a short piece for The Irish Times on one of my favourite childhood books. This is what I wrote…
Although written in the early seventies, Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing by Judy Blume still
resonates today. We meet nine year old Peter Hatcher who tells us exactly how his toddler brother
Farley has ruined both his and his parents’ lives. Farley, who prefers to be known as Fudge, is two
and a half when the book begins. He’s hyperactive, rambunctious and always gets his way. If things
don’t go how Fudge likes, he throws himself onto the floor, screaming, kicking and banging his fists.
As Peter recounts the many crimes of his brother, we also meet Jimmy – Peter’s best friend – and
Sheila – their infuriating, know-it-all classmate who just happens to live in the same building as the
It’s over a week since the Book Awards and I’m only getting around to writing about it now. (I’ve been in Berlin in the meantime!)
The night began by meeting my publisher Clodagh Feehan and fellow Mercier author Pádraig Óg Ó Ruairc whose book Revolution was shortlisted in the Best Irish Published. We were all decked out in our black tie wear, ready for the night ahead. We got to the RDS just as the president, Michael D Higgins and guest of honour of the night, Seamus Heaney were arriving. So we got a really close view of them and had to crawl in the door with some of our fellow nominees minutes after.
As some of you may have heard, my book ‘Arthur Quinn and the World Serpent’ has been shortlisted in the Bord Gáis Energy Irish Book Awards in the Best Children’s Book, Senior section. These are very prestigious awards and being shortlisted with my debut novel is a very exciting experience. My category has some strong competition. It’s all the best of Irish children’s writers; Three-time previous IBA winner Derek Landy, hugely bestselling author Darren Shan, Denise Deegan and Anna Carey. These awards are different from many others as the public get a say in choosing the winner as points are given based on both judges’ and public votes.
So, with that said, I’ll ask you to please vote for my book here. Everyone who votes is instantly put into a draw for a €100 Book Token, too!
(I feel I should also point out that there’s a great children’s writing competition on the site too. Check it out here!)
Rollercoaster.ie and Mercier Press are giving away copies of my book ‘Arthur Quinn and the World Serpent’ to five lucky winners. Closing date is November 7th. To win, just head over to this site and enter your details. Good luck!