What Am I Currently Reading?
The Apprentice Witch by James Nicol: If you like fun kind of magic then this book is for you.
This book is part of my mission to read all the SCBWI recommended middle grade novels. I'm about half way through this book. So that's half a book down, forty-five and a half to go!
I am also reading another Diana Wynne Jones book to my daughter, Sasha. She is a great writer, but she makes her readers work a bit harder. Perfect for Y6. This one is called The Magicians of Caprona.
Slightly odd to be reading two magical books at the same time, but all good!
Each book is on its own journey. There is no 'ending up'. Even if a book has been in one place for a long time, it doesn't mean it will be there forever. Perhaps it is just waiting for the right reader to pick it up.
Every copy of Jarred Dreams goes somewhere, maybe a library, maybe on a children's bookshelf then maybe, it gets passed on, to siblings, or friends. Each book could travel hundreds of miles. Thinking of my words being read by children (and grown-ups) in far flung places is A-MAZ-ING.
A few days ago I received an email (via my website) from someone in Hong Kong. Let me share with you our conversation:
My 9yo received your novel, Jarred Dreams, as a birthday gift. My daughter started reading it to me tonight, and we could not put it down!! We took it in turns reading Sade's and then the Dream Thief's chapters, but then she took over and wanted to read everything on her own. She was only meant to read one or two chapters to get in bed by 8/8.15, but she read five :D You have written a really great novel, and we are enjoying it a lot, and simply cannot wait to read more! How will it end?! We both agreed that it is very exciting.
Personally I am reminded of the feeling I had as a teenager when I read everything by Stephen King. So you deserve a huge Congratulations!! I will let our daughter write you a review when she is finished reading, and we are sure to be recommending it to others here in Hong Kong! Please write more :D
What an absolute pleasure to receive your email.
I am full of cold and having horrible, unhelpful feelings about my own abilities as a writer so it was very timely and a great confidence boost. Thank you so much for taking the time and trouble to contact me - reactions like yours and your daughters are exactly what motivates all writers and it is so important for us to hear.
It is amazing to think that my crazy imagination has stretched as far as Hong Kong.
Hope you both enjoy the ending!
We just finished "Jarred Dreams" last night, and here is what our daughter has to say!
"This was a very exciting book! Sometimes it's scary, sometimes it's sad, sometimes it's happy! I would recommend this book to anyone! The author is really good at writing.
- Giselle, 9 years old, Hong Kong"
We couldn't put it down, and you can definitely write!! You are a great Author, and we look forward to reading your next novels!
I hope lots of people around the world buy your book and future books!
Wishing you every success, Camilla, in what should be a long, happy, and lucrative career I think it is fantastic that your dreams have come true!
HAPPY FRIDAY INDEED - THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!
Getting ready for halloween?
If you're busy practicing your halloween make-up, or trying on different outfits, or getting ready to hold your own halloween party you might also be looking for a creepy book to read or give as a gift.
If so why not get a personalised copy of my book (suitable for ages 9+), Jarred Dreams?
It tells the story of the Dream Thief, a cloaked ghoul who steals children's dreams and imprisons them in jars.
Find out more by clicking here:
Find out more about buying Jarred Dreams for Halloween
In the 'What Am I Reading?' feature of my blog I am please to report that I a currenty have my nose in the fast paced, action packed, older middle grade book, Chasing Danger, by another talented SCWBI writer, Sara Grant.
As part of my own personal torture (because it adds to my crippling self-doubt at my own writing ability) and delight (because reading great books is the most wonderful thing in the world) I requested the list of 'must read' middle grade books from fellow SCWBI writers. This produced an unmanageable list of names and titles which I vow to slowly make my way through. Look out for regular, or sporadic blog posts to let you know how this is progressing.
By the way, if you don't know what 'middle grade' means, you are not alone! Candy Gourlay has written a great blog post on this, but as a rough guide it covers ages 7-13, which is then divided into younger, older or middle parts of that spectrum. I write for 8-12s, but Jarred Dreams is recommended for 9+ so is older middle grade. I'm going quiet now before I fall deeper into this hole I am digging.
Welcome to my blog, a place where you can keep up to date with what I am up to.