Aug 8, 2012
1) Why children's books? Did you choose this genre or were
you ‘chosen’ by it?
the latter. Like many children's authors part of me has never
really grown up, even though I'm a great age now and have eleven
grandchildren and two step-grandchildren.
2) Is there a children's author, living or dead, who inspired
Jean de Brunhoff [Enid Blyton's translations of his Babar books],
Kenneth Grahame [The Golden Age; Dream Days], Richmal Crompton
[William Books], Amy LeFeuvre [Edwardian morality tales,
now making a comeback as free Kindles], Charles Kingsley
[The Water Babies], Edward Lear, Rudyard Kipling and many more.
3) Please, tell us about your last book and, if you can, about your
My last major project was to write six new novels about Enid Blyton's wonderful
Naughtiest Girl in the School character, at the invitation of her family,
turning it into a collectable series of ten books. Currently I'm enjoying the
process of seeing not only these titles but many of my other books converted
into e-format and selling well, which is an exciting development for authors
with a large back list.
4) How was your writing journey? Was it difficult to find an agent
and get published?
Very, on both counts.
In the end it actually proved easier to get a publisher
[albeit after 17 rejections] than an agent, for my first novel
A HORSE CALLED SEPTEMBER. The success of this first title made
life a lot easier after that and following further success,
with my first three TREBIZON books, I actually received approaches
from agents offering to represent me [but turned them down, feeling
that by then I'd done the hardest part]!
5) What’s your opinion about this E-book revolution?
It's magical, like science fiction really, and as you'll gather from
a previous answer, I'm all in favour. Because there are physical limits
on how much print stock booksellers [or publishers' warehouses] can hold,
the e-book revolution is enormously expanding the range,
depth and variety of choice for children everywhere .
6) Nowadays many publishers expect their authors to use social media a
lot to promote their books. Many authors, on the other hand, would prefer
to write only, without being distracted by digital trivialities:
what are your thoughts?
I sympathise and am grateful that I did most of my writing before the
advent of social media. Of course publishers have always wanted authors
to lend a hand with marketing and I've done numberless school visits and
writing workshops with children. But the difference there is that real
rapport with your audience is developed and valuable feedback received.
But perhaps contacts through cyberspace will be equally rewarding
in due course - it's the way things are going.
Info about the author:
British author of children's books, mainly school stories. Born in 1935.
Best known for her highly popular Trebizon school series, which is a modern
take on the Enid Blyton Malory Towers type boarding-school series.
She also revisited another Enid Blyton school scenario when creating a
continuation of the Naughtiest Girl series by that author.
Her first book however was a pony story, a nice traditional tale
about a girl's love for a horse and one of my personal favourites.
She wrote one other pony story about a circus horse turned race horse.
To know more, please visit: http://annedigby.ponymadbooklovers.co.uk/
To buy her latest series, simply clock on the cover below: