First, my 2013 copy of WRITERS' AND ARTISTS' YEARBOOK. I've posted about this great book / company / experience before, and having a physical copy of the newest edition is always a good moment. Highlighter and sticky notes are already at the ready.
Second, a fancy pants new edition of Neil Gaiman's STARDUST, complete with new illustrations. One of those books I own, and then want to own again, in other versions. I've done this in the past with, among others, LIFE OF PI, FRANKENSTEIN, WUTHERING HEIGHTS, and HARRY POTTER.
Now it gets interesting - the completely unexpected books. THE UNLIKELY PILGRIMAGE OF HAROLD FRY, by Rachel Joyce, and a signed - yes, signed - copy of MONKEYS WITH TYPEWRITERS, by Scarlett Thomas. Joyce's book, which I had not even heard of, was bought by my sister, who previously bought me THE COLLECTED WORKS OF T. S. SPIVET, and knew it was my sort of thing. The Scarlett Thomas book - subtitle How to write fiction and unlock the secret power of stories - was from my other sister, and looks incredibly interesting. I've read THE END OF MR Y, but never any of her non-fiction. It can only be a good thing.
|See that? That's me, that is.|
On top of all that, I bought myself a copy of CODE NAME VERITY, since it seems to come up an awful lot on Twitter. So far, so good.
It might surprise you to hear that I had time for anything else in among all this reading, but I have also been writing, I promise. In fact, I've finally had the epiphany I was thus far lacking, and have found the title for my new book. It's been unusually tricky, naming this one. Other books have kept their working titles, or had something slip in half way through. But my newest book? It's been downright stubborn. Nothing was working. Nothing felt good, or made sense, or wasn't just someone else's title cunningly rehashed...
But that was then, and this is now:
So yes. There is is. THE STORY BOY. At least it will be until agent / future editor / publishing overlord / minion decides that it really shouldn't be, and then we're back to square one.
What can I tell you about it? It's about a boy - Peter - who meets another boy - Jack - and from there, a lot of things get a bit weird. It's about old myths that are really only sleeping - dreams you can fall into - and stories that want to come back to life, even if it means taking someone else's. I think it's quite a fun story, but then, I would say that, wouldn't I?
It's about what happens to old gods and stories, and what happens when two boys meddle in things they oughtn't. And it's about friendship, and loneliness, I suppose. Aren't so many kids' books?