A typical week in the life …

… of a newly-published children’s author. NOT.

  1. Sunday: go to Glastonbury, on what they called in their newspaper (yes, they have a newspaper – it’s that kind of music festival) ‘the most epic day of the most epic Glasto’. Ie the one with the best weather EVER. Put Factor 40 all over me and the girls. Have an amazing time, watching circus acts, Paloma Faith wearing what a parachutist’s outfit would look like if it was made out of net, spangles and suspenders and attached to 2 massive helium balloons, Ray Davies (wearing what a jacket would look like if it was a jacket), Dr John, Faithless and yes, the amazing Stevie. Michael Eavis really can’t sing, by the way. I mean, REALLY. Even Happy Birthday. But it was lovely to watch him with his arm around Stevie, at the end of the festival, in front of about 100,000 of us, give or take, trying.


  1. Monday: recover from Glastonbury. Suddenly remember I have a teen writing event to go to in Dulwich, where I get to meet lots of my favourite blogging and tweeting writing friends, including Luisa Plaja, Keris Stainton, Sarra Manning, Simmone Howell and Susie Day. You can read Susie’s account of it here. Lots of book signing goes on. I accidentally call Keris a bus, by which I mean that I don’t meet her for six months and then I meet her twice in a week (I’m seeing her in Manchester tomorrow). Judging by the look on Keris’s face, this doesn’t come out quite as well as I intended. Sorry, Keris. I’ll do it better in the rewrite. I’m the bus, OK? I’m the bus.
  2. Tuesday: go to the shed and write for all I’m worth, because book 3 needs to be back to my editor in a matter of days. I’m at the fact-checking stage now, like do you say Seventy-Third Street or 73rd Street, and Fifth Avenue or 5th Avenue? (It’s 73rd and Fifth, by the way.) Am interrupted many times by questions about the cover of this book and also the title. Also the title of Threads in the US, because Threads itself doesn’t necessarily translate that well. Everyone likes Beads, Boys & Bangles, though, so we need similar titles for books 1 and 3. Which means thinking of 6 title words! Six! Ideally starting with the same letter. This hard! Luckily, everyone agreed in Dulwich on Monday that titles are tough, so I know it’s not just me. Phew. School event in the evening. Have a lovely time. Come home late. Grab some sleep.
  3. Wednesday: more writing in the shed. Plus a bit of blogging, because I miss it. Plus preparing my talk for a symposium at the inaugural Manchester Children’s Book Festival, where I shall be sitting alongside Barry, a new author called Robert Williams, Melvin Burgess (SO not a new author) and Philip Pullman’s agent. OMG. No pressure, then. It’s for aspiring children’s writers and I will be telling them that writing is HARD WORK. Golly, even the title is hard work. I may also mention that I love every minute of it, and there is a certain amount of drinking (fizzy water, I was driving) with friendly tweeting and blogging other writers involved, but mostly it will be the hard work theme. I think they need to know.
  4. Thurdsay. Manchester. Do the symposium with Philip Pullman’s agent etc. OMG. Have coffee with Keris – having met up for the second time in a week. I’m the bus, OK? Me. Come home.
  5. Friday: prepare for school visit on Monday. Go to nine year-old’s sports day. Make picnic. Eat picnic. Squeeze in a bit more editing of book 3 before sending it back to my editor.
  6. Saturday: go to Wiggles concert in Hammersmith with the three year-old and some friends. Toot toot chugga chugga big red car, we’re gonna DRIVE the whole day LONG.

Da Daaah. That’s my week. It’s not always so full of stuff. Sometimes it’s mostly go-to-the-shed-and-write-then-pick-up-kids-from-school. Hopefully next week will be a bit like that. But even though fitting in things like a hairwash are remarkably tricky at the moment, I think I’ll look back in years to come and think, wow, that bit was fun. What little I can remember of it. Toot toot chugga chugga.

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5 thoughts on “A typical week in the life …

  1. It was lovely to meet you and I’m thrilled we’re doing it again tomorrow. And I knew what you meant about the bus! My brain was just a little slow to catch up. But now you sound like Sally in When Harry Met Sally: “Who’s the dog in this scenario? I’m the dog? I’M the dog?” ๐Ÿ™‚

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