Read Bookbuzz blogs
Last year's Bookbuzz authors gave us some behind-the-scenes insight into their books. Why not have a read?
Find out how Chris Priestley gets his inspiration, get creative writing tips from Katy Birchall, and read R. J. Palacio on embracing the difference in the world around you. Plus lots lots more...
This year's author blogs
Probably one of the most common questions we get asked as writers is ‘Where do you get your ideas from?’ Because that’s how books start, right? From ‘ideas’?
Writing is hard work, you need your fuel, especially when you have writer’s block (which, by the way, every writer on the planet gets) and yes, I appreciate that most authors would not start an important Bookbuzz blog post all about the creative writing process with a point about snacks.
A few years ago I took my sons for ice cream, and while my older son went inside to buy us our milk shakes, my younger son and I waited on the bench outside. At a certain point I realised that sitting right next to me was a little girl with a severe craniofacial difference, her friend (or sister), and her mother.
Phoenix is an epic story about a human boy who has the power of a star, and an alien girl who is the most brilliant warrior in the galaxy. Together, they have to find a way to save the galaxy from the war that's destroying it: the war between humans and aliens.
BECAUSE YOU DON’T KNOW ABOUT THE TOOTHBRUSH SNAKE, a tiny snake from Belgium that creeps into bathrooms and lies beside your actual toothbrush. And if you’re not paying attention and put toothpaste on it, IT SHOOTS UP YOUR NOSE. And the only way to get it down is by playing a trumpet.
Because I write both fiction and non-fiction, I'm always hopping between the two 'worlds' of true things and made-up things. It's huge fun. It also means my fiction and non-fiction influence each other. When I write fiction, I try to make the stories as believable as possible (even if they're about a remote control that can pause and rewind Time).
I made two books about cats, and people asked me to write a book with a dog in it for a change. I don’t know much about dogs, so I made a book about cats meeting a dog. When I was a child, my father bought a dog, and I was quite unsure about it. That’s what this book is about really. The cats are feeling how I felt - not very happy about a dog appearing!
The dizzyingly fast, colourful, sometimes creepy, stunning, often surprising, and always awe-inspiring creatures that live and lurk and lunge beneath the ocean waves are some of the best co-conspirators a writer could ever ask for.
I wish I could say that Murder in Midwinter struck me as a fully formed book, all the characters mapped out and the story a clear narrative in my mind, but the reality is much less defined. In truth, it's the result of a collection of ideas that gelled together in some magic and indefineable way over a period of months.
Today I was caught by an old memory I have of my mum, when I half-overheard, half-didn’t-hear, a conversation she was having with her friend.
Bookbuzz author blog: Are you fascinated by monsters? Do you dream of solving crimes? Could you laugh in the face of danger?
If you answered “yes” to those questions, then we might have a lot in common.
Last year's author blogs
Bookbuzz author blog: Frances Hardinge - Who wants to embroider when you can dig up prehistoric monsters?
The Lie Tree is the story of Faith, daughter of a Victorian clergyman, whose appetite for science has been whetted by the books in her father's library.
The Many Worlds of Albie Bright was inspired by quantum physics specifically the Many Worlds Interpretation of parallel universes.
Any writer will tell you that within a story there needs to be conflict. No one wants to read about a perfectly perfect protagonist having a perfectly happy life and living happily ever after. We want to follow one who is presented with challenges and to see how they respond to them, and how they try to overcome them.
I found the move between primary and secondary school a bit tricky. When I first started secondary school I was labelled 'weird'. I had weird shoes, an even weirder skirt, two pet rats and I played the spoons. This had been fine at primary school (encouraged, even!) but secondary school was a different beast.
Writing a graphic novel is a team effort - author and illustrator. I'm really lucky to work with Peter Richardson on the Boffin Boy books.
Bookbuzz author Helen Dennis writes about, 'collisions' - what happens when one idea crashes into another!
I often get asked where I get the ideas for my stories. It's not an easy question to answer!
Becket Rumsey in The Boy Who Sailed the Ocean in an Armchair is setting out of a journey of discovery. It's not plain sailing but then what journeys ever are...
The Bear and the Piano celebrated its 1st birthday earlier this month. And oh my, what a year its been. From launching the book in St Pancras Station with a Bear playing the public pianos, to meeting so many great new friends up and down the country visiting schools and bookshops, and winning awards.
Here are the amazing Bookbuzz titles for 2017! There really is something for everyone, even the most reluctant of readers, with funny books, fact books, fast-paced action and mystery - and much, much more.
Check out our competitions where you can win more books from this year's Bookbuzz authors.