I’m heading north for the Catalyst Book Award hosted by North Lanarkshire Libraries for Book Week. I’m delighted to say that my teen book, Accidental Friends, has been short-listed for this award alongside titles by Theresa Breslin, Garry Kilworth and Simon Morden. I doubt that Accidental Friends will win – it’s probably a bit too ‘issues-led’ for boys to vote for it but it’s great to be nominated and I can’t wait to meet everyone at Braidhust High School, Calverdale High School and St Maurice’s. Coffee with cream, no sugar, please.
Before that I’m going to be talking about Girls FC to pupils at Holytown Primary and Christ the King Primary in Motherwell. Kids, get ready. I’m expecting loads of questions and advice on how to cure someone of a fear of taking headers.
As if that isn’t enough excitement for one week, when I return I’ll only have time for a quick jam butty before heading out again for the Cheltenham Book Festival. I’m appearing with Tom Palmer for our first ever Reads United session. The Book It Tent, Imperial Gardens 2.30 pm. Saturday 10th October. Be there, dudes. It’s a blast! Last year I stood, jaw suitably dropped, as celebrity after celebrity edged past me in the Green Room. Funnily enough the only person I saw who overawed me was Shirley Hughes, sitting unassumingly in a corner. The real stars shine quietest but for longer, don’t they?
Yes, Tom is a Leeds United supporter. Please don’t hold it against him. He can still write and he’s a really nice guy. Honest.
New! I’ve noticed that librarians tend to have the title of the book they’re currently reading at the bottom of their e-mails so I thought I’d do the same. Here goes:
I am reading The Death Defying Pepper Roux by Geraldine McCaughrean. It’s brilliant.
PS: Can’t you take a year off, Geraldine? Go on ‘gardening leave’ or something? Just to give the rest of us a chance??