Hello, dragon fans. Once again it's that time of year when authors emerge from their candlelit garrets to go out and talk for World Book Day, which this year falls on Thursday March 1st. As I scribble this down, our author is busily pacing the room going through his routines as he prepares for a little string of school visits that will take him to various parts of the south west of England. On Tuesday, for instance, he will be back in the historic city of Bath. More about that next Sunday, no doubt. Mrs Author is rubbing her hands in glee, because while he's out from under her feet for a few hours, she can get things done at home. Well, someone's got to tidy his room!
You might say, "What's the point of World Book Day?" when books are there, around you, all the time. Well, it never does any harm to highlight the obvious. Yesterday, for instance, the author was wandering around the house saying, "Has anybody seen my glasses?" We all looked at one another and sighed. Gwendolen eventually took pity on him and said, "You're wearing them." See what I mean? Books are good - 'the cheapest form of entertainment' someone once said. But authors don't go out to preach that fact on WBD, they simply go out to celebrate.
It would have been fantastic, of course, if THE FIRE ASCENDING could have coincided with this year's event. But we still have to wait another month or so for that. So many of you are writing in and asking about it. Don't worry, the book is on course for publication on April 5th (UK) and May 1st (rest of the world). Any day now, we hope to see an advance copy. One reader sent in a very thoughtful email today hoping to hear that David would not turn into some form of 'messiah'. We can assure you he doesn't. It's fairly safe to say that David becomes the sort of man that everyone would like him to be by the end of the book. He's grown up, certainly, and no longer puts twiglets up his nose to amuse Lucy, but in TFA he loses the aloofness he had in the middle of the series and is rather lovable by the end. He has to go through some trials to get to that point, but he does survive. Properly, as Lucy might have said.
Oh, and we must say a big thank you to German publishers Coppenrath for sending us copies of the first three books which have now appeared in paperback over there.
Finally, this week, a picture. The author loves to see the images you draw and every now and then we like to feature one on the blog. So here is Thoran the ice bear, as drawn by Madison. Note the watch by his feet. Would you pick it up and follow the bear...? Until next time. Happy reading. Hrrr!