Sunday, 19 September 2010

This week's word is: SUBBUTEO

Hello dragon fans.  I've given Zookie the day off this week as things are pretty quiet right now.  So he is being a dragon of leisure and I'm doing the blog entry.  He has asked me to remind you that Mrs Author's guidebook, RAIN AND FIRE, is due out in the UK on October 7th, but we'll be flagging that up specially around the first week in October.

A couple of weeks ago, someone wrote to me asking what my favourite game was when I was a boy.  Well, that was easy to answer.  I've always been a soccer fan.  I grew up watching legends like...well, most of you would never have heard of them.  So let me tell you about a table top soccer game instead.  It was called Subbuteo, and it involved flicking plastic figures around a green baize soccer pitch, after a ball that in some cases was almost as big as the players themselves.  People were seriously passionate about this game.  I used to play in a league with my schoolfriends.  I never won the league, but I really enjoyed travelling to my friends' houses for away games.  One friend, Karl, had a lava lamp in his lounge.  That was always a special fixture!  When I grew up and started writing, I began to write about the things I loved.  And shortly before the dragon books came along I wrote a story about Subbuteo called 'The Table Football League'.  Sadly, you can't get the book any more.  And the game itself has gone out of production thanks to the advent of video games.  But all around the world, aged enthusiasts (who play World Cups, would you believe?) keep the game alive.  If you've never tried it, I totally recommend it.  It's quite amazing.  I would love to see it make a comeback.  Interestingly, 'The Table Football League' was illustrated by Philip Reeve, before he became famous for his wonderful 'Mortal Engines' series of books.  Maybe I should challenge him to a game one day?

So, what's happening in dragon world?  Well, I am waiting for what we call 'proof'' copies of Fire World from both my UK and my US editors.  A 'proof' is simply a copy I have to read through, to check for errors.  And any day now, I will begin work on the seventh and final book of the series.  I have a title in mind, but I'm not going to put it out until I'm completely sure.  But, as always, this is where you'll see it first.  Till next time.  Happy reading.  Hrrr!

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