Sunday, April 10, 2011


I really need to have a concerted and organized effort to find an agent to represent "Zombie Hunters of the Fourth Grade", which everyone says is hilarious - but - nobody has actually agreed to publish yet!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Note to self ---

And once again I forget to write anything, for months ----

Must do better.

Today I go to Clifton, NJ to discuss a programme for the summmer, a one day thing. My friend Anne Beier is the children's librarian there. It's the first programme they've put on for creative writing, so we'll have to tailor it to the audience. More later - I promise!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Total Negligence ---

Having told myself "I will remember to post on my blog!" I haven't in three months.

In that time I have been rear-ended by a hostile Honda, had the company I worked for blow up under me, and visited my in-laws.

Okay, who didn't get the joke?

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Reading next weekend

I'll be reading from 'Bogbrush' on Saturday at New City Library at 1.30. I always enjoy public readings as it gives me a chance to use my collection of silly voices in public without fear of rebuke.

Plus I have the very fine plastic viking helmet that Bill Slavin gave me. The chances I have to wear this fine item are few, and I have to seize them when I can.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Young writers keep showing up!

One of the risks of running a group for middle grade writers is that - being 9-12 years old and all - they sometimes drop out easily. People do that anyway, but at least adults aren't at risk of having their parents decided they can't take the writer to the library today because it's time to shop for groceries.

My current group is three weeks into the five week course, and we've got five of the original seven. That's pretty good. One kid was clearly too young, and his mother was very apologetic about withdrawing him. The other has been in my class before, and he's pretty hyper - I'm not complaining if he stays away!

We covered dialogue yesterday, making a list of verbs that can be used instead of 'said'. Then we went around making up a conversation between the fictional 'Jim' and 'Steve' in which each participant uttered (there's one!) something in the voice that matched the verb they used. Being ten year olds, we had a lot of "screamed Jim" and "Yelled Steve".

It was great. I am now deaf, and lucky not to be banned from the library.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Who am I and what am I up to?

My old school (and it's a very old school, dating to 1552) has taken to the interweb in a big way, mostly - I assume - to beg for money from those former pupils who have any. Ha! Fooled them!

Anyway, they ask what we've been up to. My former classmates seem largely to be (predictably) a bunch of accountants, finance professionals, civil servants and the like. One's a hedge fund millionaire, one (interestingly - and a nice bloke) is working on creating a museum for the Parachute Regt, one (interestingly, if tragically) died on the way down from the summit of Everest in 1995.

(Other old boys, from other years since 1552 include JRR Tolkien, the painter Burne-Jones, Bill Slim - the best allied general of WWII bar none - the comedian/naturalist/TV personality Bill Oddie and airport novelist supreme Lee Child)

Here's what I claim to have done this year:

This year Howard Whitehouse (1976) has helped dig out a bus from an Andean streambed at 17,000 feet, been stung in the ear by wasps, and written a novel involving quite a lot of zombies. His “Mad Misadventures” series of books for discerning young persons has been sold to a publisher in Belgrade for translation into Serbo-Croat. His luggage was searched in El Salvador. He performed a self-penned song about a courgette in a contest for zucchini-oriented poetry, and came second in a field of two. He has refused to eat deep-fried guinea pig, and thinks you should too.

Every bit of this is true.

Getting them thar reviews in!

The first reviews for Bogbrush are coming in. Here's one from the Barnes and Noble's site: No idea who the writer is, but he/she reviews a lot of books.

Posted September 20, 2010, 9:55 AM EST: Absolutely hilarious. The illustrations are perfect and the text is laugh-out-loud funny and ridiculous. Recommended for fans of Howard Whitehouse's other books (and if you haven't read those, you are really missing out!) as well as fans of the slightly absurd who want to laugh a lot. The story is not overly long and would make a great read aloud/read together for middle graders (4th-6th) and their parents.

And here's Melissa at Book Nut:

Thank you, I say. The cheques will be in the mail :)