Win real Mousehunter artwork!

January 7, 2010 by  
Filed under Uncategorized

Faber are running an ace competition to win copies of Mousebeard’s Revenge. The star prize is an illustration of a mouse from the book, which is not to be sniffed at if I do say so myself.

So spread the word and maybe even enter the competition. What have you got to lose? Closing date is 1 February, 2010, so you best get cracking!

Mousebeard's Revenge, out now!

January 4, 2010 by  
Filed under Uncategorized

rev-cover

It’s official, Mousebeard’s Revenge, the concluding part of the Mousehunter trilogy is now available, and pretty cheap if you buy it through Amazon. So shout about it from the rafters and every rooftop going, and if you’re in a bookshop – even if you don’t want to buy it – go and ask the store assistant if they have Mousebeard’s Revenge in stock.

I’ll love you all forever.

Mousebeard's Revenge

December 8, 2009 by  
Filed under Publishing

mb-revenge

Today brought with it copies of the new Mousehunter book, Mousebeard’s Revenge. The release date is January 7th, but as I have it in my hands, there’s a good chance it’ll creep into shops – especially Amazon – before then.

I think it feels like the best book of the three. The cover’s the best, the bronze lettering’s the best, and I think it’s also the perfect length. Unlike some series, The Mousehunter books get slimmer and more honed the later they get. I was determined not to let them suffer the same fate as the Harry Potter books or His Dark Materials trilogy, and include hundreds of pages where our heroes sit in a tent waiting for something to happen, or even have whole chapters where a character sits in a tree noting the lifecycle of a peculiar new species.

In Mousebeard’s Revenge, it’s action all the way, and that’s the way a climax should be.

I hope you like it.

The Mouse Exhibition

October 7, 2009 by  
Filed under Bits and Bobs

With the final Mousehunter book pretty much signed off now, I’ve started thinking about the launch. This time round it will coincide with me becoming a dad, at the start of January, so free time is going to be a bit on the short side. However, there are a couple of things in the pipeline, first and foremost being a Mouse Exhibition.

Mousebeard’s Revenge revolves around the International Mouse Exhibition, which, for the first time in many years, is taking place in Old Town. With this in mind, I thought it would be nice to create my own mouse exhibition, potentially something that could be boxed up and travel – maybe to bookshops around London (this is wishful thinking on my part, but I’m going to give it a go).

Planning is in the formative stages, so to get the ball rolling, I’m calling out for people who might like to help me create this thing. Time is not on my side at the minute, so I’m attempting to create an avalanche of mice by using hired hands.

If you’re handy and might like to make a mouse, whether it’s a little plasticine model, stitched or made of card, i want to hear from you. In return, you’ll definitely get invited to the launch (still planning that, likely to be in Crystal Palace…), and you’ll also get something from me in return, be that a signed copy of the book, or maybe a mouse of your choice drawn by me.

Either leave me a comment here, or drop me an email (contact address is at the top).

Be lovely to get your help and send the Mousehunter Trilogy off with a proper big mousey bang.

Proofing Mousebeard's Revenge

October 1, 2009 by  
Filed under Uncategorized

I’ve finished it. After almost four years in the making, the Mousehunter trilogy came to an end yesterday as I finished proofing the final book, Mousebeard’s Revenge. I took the edited copy to Faber with all the tweaks and changes scribbled in large, and I allowed myself to by a comic/graphic novel to celebrate.

french-milkWhen you enter a massive shop full of things you want, it’s near impossible to pick any one thing. So I didn’t, I bought two. I bought the beautiful Three Shadows by Cyril Pedrosa and French Milk by Lucy Knisley

I was lucky enough to briefly meet Lucy Knisley a few months ago, and even ended up in one of her gorgeous journals. Needless to say French Milk is wonderful.

And in other news, I wrote about being a nearly-dad, over here on Parentdish. Two months to go till the baby arrives. EEEEK.

Portly the Grey Mouse

September 4, 2009 by  
Filed under I made this!

grey-mouse

I had to find a new mouse for Mousebeard’s Revenge yesterday. Such are the difficulties of plotting and planning books, I always get the number of Almanac entries between chapters wrong and have to find a new one right at the end of the writing process.

But not to worry, I’ve actually got a number of extra mice lying around. Not real ones of course, just rare horned, nasty or steel-jaw varieties that got the chop from the books for one reason or another.

And this time, the reserve who came on in the 88th minute to secure a win was the Grey Mouse. Or Portly. Because Portly was always one of my favourite characters in the book, and it seems apt that the very last mouse in the very last Almanac entry is him.

Go Portly.

Mousebeard's Revenge creeping closer

August 6, 2009 by  
Filed under Uncategorized

exhibition-ticket


I can’t believe how quickly next year is coming around, helped in no small part to being incredibly busy dealing with Yetis. However, with January fast approaching, plans are afoot to really get behind the final Mousehunter book.

The story revolves around the three days of the World Mouse Exhibition, which takes place in Old Town. Of course, expect there to be hi-jinx and excitement, and nothing less than all-out mouse war. But more of that later.

The most exciting thing about the release of a new book is getting to make all sorts of stuff to go with it. I’ve got a few plans for hosting a real-life mouse exhibition, there’l be posters and tickets, such as that one above, and of course I’ll be doing a spot more animation for a trailer. Biggest and best of all though is that there’ll be an extra special treat for anyone interested in the secrets behind the making and creation of the Mousehunter series. This is totally hush hush for now, but I’m as excited about it as I am the launch of the new book itself.

January can’t come fast enough.

Mousebeard's Revenge cover

July 28, 2009 by  
Filed under Uncategorized

It’s been a while in the making, but now you can find the book on Amazon to pre-order, I thought it was time to show you all the finished cover. This time round all the writing will be in bronze/gold foil, so if you use your imagination you’ll have an idea what the printed version will look like.

mh3_revenge



The scene on the front shows Emiline and Scratcher escaping from the Mousetrading Hall in Old Town with the aid of two massive flying mice. If you came along to see me at the Crystal Palace Festival, this was the passage I chose to read, so you might recognise it.

Mousebeard's Revenge Cover

May 8, 2009 by  
Filed under sketchbook

emflyingIt’s a funny old thing making an illustration for a cover. I’ve been working on the one for the final Mousehunter book, illustrating a really fun scene from quite early on in the story. The nice part of it is that it’s the same scene I read out at the Crystal Palace Festival, so it’s fresh and alive in my brain.

Translating it into an image has been a bit of a blast. There are huge flying mice, with Emiline and Scratcher holding onto them for dear life as they leap out of a window. And of course, way down below is Old Town. It’s great to have Old Town there, as on the previous cover it was just a bit of deck. (There is the port on the new Mousehunter cover, but that’s not available just yet.)

I imagine many writers have ideas for how their covers should look and I imagine many are frustrated by the outcome. But I’m so lucky to get the opportunity to influence them so much. I guess it’s a big responsibility, but hey, I’m always up for a challenge.

I watched Inkheart at the weekend, and there are a few lovely scenes when the writer of the book (a fabulous Jim Broadbent) gets so excited about seeing his creations come to life that he forgets that the baddies he made up are in fact very dangerous.

Well, this cover has felt a bit like that for me. It really feels like I’ve recreated my world in picture form and, it also has Scratcher on it.

So here’s a preliminary drawing for the cover, of Emiline and the massive Beachcomber Mouse. I’ll post the finished thing when I can!