Posts Tagged ‘Henry Hoey Hobson’

9781925324921_HenryHoeyHobson_300dpi

So tell me, whaddaya think of the new look Henry Hoey Hobson?

Penguin Random House has shouted my adored middle child a brand new jacket and I couldn’t be happier.

‘Henry is an in-house favourite,’ says my lovely publisher Zoe Walton. ‘We wanted to give him a fresh new look that’s fun and grabs young readers’ attention.’

So brace yourself young readers, the rejacketed Henry Hoey Hobson¬†is heading your way soon. Look for him in bookstores from 1 March. ūüôā

(Cover design by Christa Moffitt of Christabella Designs, who also designed covers for fellow Random House award winners Two Wolves and Are You Seeing Me?)

 

Sending air kisses into the ether Рmmwa Рto everyone who voted for Dust and Henry Hoey Hobson in THE BIG READ celebrating stories set in Queensland.

Thanks to you, they’ve both come in winners – Dust¬†for Older Readers, and Henry Hoey Hobson¬†in the Younger Readers category.

Saturday’s announcement at the State Library of Queensland by Book Links Qld as part of the National Year of Reading was a great way to end Book Week …and an every better kickstart to Literacy Week (oh yes, the big weeks just keep on rolling for we wranglers of words).

Tomorrow I’m off to Calvary Christian College, and then on to All Hallows and Mt Alvernia later in the week to talk books and writing to secondary students.

And for Brisbane lovers of picture books, please feel free to drop by Riverbend Books at 5pm on Tuesday 28 August for the launch of Gus Gordon’s gorgeous¬†Herman and Rosie. We’d love to see you there. ūüôā

Funny, what inspires us as writers.

I’ve never been much of a swimmer myself. I can manage a stately breast stroke in a flowered bathing cap, but it just isn’t my thing, if you know what I mean.

I grew up on a farm, in the middle of a drought, and was ten years old before our gully filled for the first time.

I nearly drowned in the Biloela pool in primary school, trying to swim its breadth with my eyes squeezed shut against the unfamiliar chemicals. I listed to the right¬† and ended up swimming an elongated dog’s leg before finally touching, exhausted, at the deep end.

Infrequent trips to the placid waters of Yeppoon and Tannum Sands didn’t teach me that much. Though I remember the excitement of my brother nearly drowning and afterwards discovering a tiny fish, still alive, in his Speedos.

It surprises me still that I grew up to marry a man with salt water in his veins, a man who is grounded in water. It surprises me even more that our children can swim and that I loved them enough to spend a large chunk of the past 18 years poolside.

But what surprises me the most is how much I’ve grown to love the friendships and sense of community surrounding our little neighbourhood swim club.

For the past nine years, every Spring and Summer, we’ve put out the lane ropes on a Saturday afternoon, gossiped with our friends and cheered our littlies on as they strove for personal best times in their races against the stop watch.

Dozens of trophies crowd our kids’ shelves including one for “Most Attentive and Best Behaved” and another for “The Esther Williams Award for Best Technique”.

My own trophy shelf is bare, but for one – awarded for debating, in 1977 – until now.

Because now I too have a swimming trophy. Awarded last Saturday at my last Swim Club meeting after nine fun-filled years. My youngest is moving on, so we will too, leaving the Club to the up-and-coming young families.

They’ll miss me on the megaphone, they say. I know I’ll miss them. But I’ll have something special to remember them by ….

My first ever swimming trophy and farewell gift with an inscription that reads “love KGASC”…

And I do.

Because without all those Saturdays poolside with the Kelvin Grove Amateur Swim Club, I would never have written my children’s novel Henry Hoey Hobson about a boy who nearly drowns in the turbulent waters of Year Seven.

So thanks KGASC for the inspiration. It’s funny where we writers find it, isn’t it?

I’ve just spent the best part of a week unable to walk up or down stairs.

Quadriceps that once functioned perfectly adequately for a woman of my years, have failed me.

Despite the general consensus of family and friends, I refuse to blame it on last week’s indoor netball game.

I may be the oldest member of the team (the oldest member in the comp, some have unkindly suggested), and I may have played only the one season since 1973, but by golly, I’m still up for it.

The sweet young things we played were barely half our age, but I only fell over the once; the scrape on my elbow hardly bled at all and my left knee didn’t turn green for days.

But old and cunning still has some advantages over young and beautiful.

Unlike the SYTs on the other team, we didn’t have any makeup to sweat off, we weren’t there to hook up, and we didn’t have the rest of our lives to win a game of netball; every mature netballer knows that every game could be her last.

I was feeling pretty good afterward, despite my fall. So good in fact, that the very next day I offered to stand in for a fellow indoor netballer at her group Pilates class.

Clearly she knew something I didn’t.

The instructor had biceps like ham hocks and little understanding of the special needs of the more mature indoor netballer.

An hour later I wobbled out on trembling legs, in such a state that a friend who has survived cancer asked if I needed a hand.

I’ve been keeping a low profile since. Walking the dog slowly, hoping to regain full use of my legs.

But today, I rose without groaning, felt an unaccustomed spring in my step, ran up the stairs, just to prove that I could, and turned on the computer to hear via the lovely Jim Roy that HENRY HOEY HOBSON had made the Victorian CBCA Clayton’s Shortlist for Younger Readers.

So chuffed was I that I did a little dance (just because I could). Happy too, that Jim’s latest novel ANONYMITY JONES made the list for Older Readers, along with fellow Woolshed Press author Nette Hilton for THE INNOCENTS.

If you’d like to see the Victorian Clayton’s judges’ hot tips on which books could be contenders for the REAL Children’s Book Council Shortlist to be announced on April 12, click here.

Meantime, I can die happy.

I’ve won an indoor netball game (I did mention we won, didn’t I? 29-20. Against those spritely young things) AND I’ve shared a (Clayton’s) shortlist with the likes of¬† Michael Gerard Bauer and Glenda Millard.)

Oh yes, my week has definitely got better. ūüôā

A huge thank you to all the hard-working librarians who have chosen Henry Hoey Hobson for this year’s Readers Cup.

Five regions so far – Brisbane South, Brisbane Bayside, Gold Coast, Capricornia and Somerset/Lockyer – have put HHH on the list of books to be read in their regional competitions in June. Other regions will be declaring their lists in the coming weeks, so fingers crossed!

I’m really looking forward to presenting the cups and medallions to regional finalists in June¬† and being part of the State Finals to be held in conjunction with the Ipswich Literature Festival in September.

The Readers Cup promotes the love of literature to students in Years 6/7 and 8/9, so if your school hasn’t yet signed up, click here to register. You have until the end of March to join the cool kids. ūüôā

Caleb and VeeOK, this has never happened to me before, so I just have to share it.

When I rocked up to Brisbane’s Somerville House this week¬†to talk to 250 Year Seven and Eight students, the last thing I expected was to be greeted by two of the characters out of my latest novel, Henry Hoey Hobson.

Somerville’s¬†inspirational and enthusiastic librarians, Lucia and Jannine, not only¬†transformed themselves into Caleb and Vee, HHH’s¬†mysterious coffin-owning neighbours, they also recreated the chili fizz cocktail served to Henry by the¬†broken and scarred Manny.

Thank the high heavens, as Vee would say, for¬†librarians everywhere.¬† And a special thank you to¬†Lucia and Jannine, for bringing my characters to life and making my visit to Somerville so memorable.¬†ūüôā

I’m dying here, people. Torn. Torn. Torn.

Half of me wants to let the cat out of the bag, the other half wants to warn off anyone who hasn’t yet¬†read Henry Hoey Hobson.

Teachers Notes for HHH are now available. They’re awesome, but be warned, they do contain, ahem, spoilers (like a chapter-by-chapter breakdown of plot and character, and pages of ready-to-use classroom activities¬†for over-worked teachers of Grades 6-8).

Click here if you are a teacher, know a teacher, or want to make a teacher’s life just that¬†little bit easier.

The rest of you, click¬†here¬†for a¬†taste¬†that won’t spoil your appetite for more. ūüėČ