Ash Mistry and The Savage Fortress

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Sarwat Chaddas Blog

Spill the Ink Tour, Part One (plus competition details!)

Phew. Just back from five utterly mad days running hither and thither around England. Loads of schools, LOADS of kids and loads of insanity. Where to begin?

Well, Monday was up loony early (like 5am) to rush up to Nottingham, home of Robin Hood and people who live in Nottingham. I met up with the HarperCollins crew and my new BFF Sian Patterden and Sarah Lean, fellow authors who were going to join me on tour, exploring the wilds of the British Midlands.

So, at Nottingham. First stop was Nottingham High Juniors, and we kicked off with talking about gods, goddesses and demons and crappy holidays. In fact, crappy holidays seemed to come up a lot. A LOT. I suppose it's because 'Ash Mistry and the Savage Fortress' is actually about a boy who does go on the absolutely WORST summer holiday of his life. You know, hot, crowded, loads of flies and dodgy food and, of course, demons. Demons will spoil any holiday, gauranteed. The boys were awesome and the signing queue very long. I'd like to give a shout out to Anand who didn't get his book sorted in time, DO NOT FEAR, ANAND! Me and your parents are on the case. Expect something pretty darn soon.

Which reminds me, if any of you want signed copies of my book, just drop me a line via the 'Contacts Me' page and I'll arrange one of my local bookshops to get it sent to you. See, a I a nice guy or what?

Anyway, then, a joint event with Sian and Sarah at Chilwell School with some of the Year 6 feeders. Rather most mental. One girl was explaining how, on her crappy holiday, they had to hide under a car from the police. I can only assume her family are a gang of hardened bank robbers or something. Her name and address have been passed to the authorities. Y'know, I wonder of other authors get these sorts of audience? My must ask JK Rowlings next time I see her.

Day 2 and we zoomed off to Leicester and gusee what, we got really really lost. I lost my team, I lost the other authors and the taxi broke down, got lost and dropped me off at the wrong school. And this was only Day 2! Still, when I fianlly arrived at Foresr Lodege the kids could not have been more amazing. Like, totally. Managed to squeeze out an epic battle between the forces of good and evil in the short time i was there and then to Stokes Wood Primary which was were the Wales thing started to happen. Hmm, if there's one thing that came up a lot was how many kids have gone camping in Wales when it's rained. Form then on it was were-sheep, man-eating cows and trying to find the loo in the middle of the night.

Two days down and already feeling like a space cadet. I'll blog about the next few events later this week but first I want to mention a competition. DESIGN A DEMON.

That's what I need you to do. Draw it and give it a name and tell me a bit about it. This is open to al the kids I saw last week and anyone else who wants to join in. Basically, I need more demons in my books. I'll be writing a few short stories at the end of the year and they'll be going up on the website and I need you guys to help supply the bad guys. We want IN YOU FACE fangs, claws, tusk and all together BAD ATTITUDES. I want then wild, fer4icious and the sort that will tear your face clean off. I want them big, bad and oh so dangerous to know. So get designing and get drawing. I will give you the address to send off the artwork at the end of June so you have a complete month to design something quite INSANE. There will be some AMAZING prizes and the winners will get book 2, 'Ash Mistry and the City of Death' WAAY before everyone else. That seem reasonable? Cool. Alas, the competition is only for UK residents. I'll be sorting out a world-wide competition after the summer.

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