Monday, 18 August 2008


I was in Gateshead today.

In the morning doing a drop-in event at Borders Bookstore. It's a great shop: in the Team Valley Retail Park.

I spoke to the children's specialist for ages. Each Borders has a children's specialist who runs events and knows the children's book world inside out. I learned a lot. Marie Dawson is the specialist in Gateshead. She looked after me very well - and got me a cup of tea too.

Then I met the lad who works in the stockroom at Borders. He's just finished a degree in criminology: the science of crime. He made me want to do the course myself. Studying crime, why it happens and how to stop it. Why not?

After the bookshop I went to the library. We had three events over three hours. Loads of kids came. Mostly Newcastle fans. But a four year old girl in a Liverpool shirt won the penalty shoot out.

Gateshead Library are brilliant. They do excellent events. They looked after me really well too. Two cups of tea and a muffin. They have lots of event over the summer to let people know about books and their authors.

As I left the chief librarian of Gateshead arrived and went in goal. A good sport: but he shouldn't give up the day job.

Then the train home. And another cup of tea. I like the North East. Nice people.

Sunday, 17 August 2008

Booked Up

The Booked Up promotion starts this autumn. Every year seven student in schools gets offered a free book - choosing from twelve. I'm proud to say Foul Play is one of the books they can choose from. If you qualify and haven't heard about it yet ask your teacher or librarian. They'll know.

I was in my local library on Friday - Todmorden - doing an event. The Booked Up boxes arrived there. Twelve books in each box. Posters. Bookmarks. Stickers. And all the books. It looked really good. I'm going to read all the other eleven books. I particualrly want to read Skulduggery Pleasant, seeing as I've seen it all over the place.

This week I'm in Gateshead and Surrey. With Liverpool sandwiched in between.

The football season started last week. Leeds have won two and lost one. Not so bad. On 6 September I'm taking my four year old to her first home game. She's excited. But not as excited as me.