TWO THUMBS UP for SEPTEMBER!
'Dreams do come true, if only we wish hard enough.'
September was very busy for me as I was leading workshops for writers with #WriteMentor who held their annual online conference #WOWCON20 and for the Scottish BAME Writers Network and making videos for schools as part of the Scottish Book Trust Live Literature. Many writers make money not only from their writing (which can be very low) and so extra income is made teaching or by doing school visits. Obviously with COVID, a lot of in-person school visits are no longer permitted and that means many authors have to do virtual visits or record videos of themselves. I’ve realised that making pre-recorded videos can take quite a lot of effort and time. The plus of doing virtual visits is that you can stay at home, but the children can still see you where they are in the world.
I also signed up with two primary schools with bookpenpals. Authors and illustrators can choose up to three primary schools to write letters to and recommend children’s books and the schools can write back. I chose Two Mile Hill Primary in Bristol and Boldmere Juniors in Sutton Coldfield, where I used to live. I also had the honour of having a class named after me. Hazel Community Primary School in Leicester named one of the Year 1 class the Maisie Chan class. I was so surprised that a class would be named after me! The children have written me some wonderful letters and I have sent them a letter this week too. As a child I loved writing letters and had pen pals in Nova Scotia, Canada, one in Jamaica and another in Greece. During lockdown, I also tried to write letters to friends to see how they were and to tell them what was happening in my life. There is something special about receiving mail in the post!
BOOK DEAL NEWS!!!
I have signed a U.K two book deal with Piccadilly Press (Bonnier U.K) for DANNY CHUNG DOES NOT DO MATHS and a one book deal with Abram Kids in the U.S for DANNY CHUNG SUMS IT UP. My novel is a warm-hearted story about 11-year old Danny, who loves drawing, but his parents want him to be someone else. When his grandmother arrives from China, he is forced to let her sleep in his room and she takes the top bunk, which as we all know is the BEST BUNK!
I can’t wait for next year when the book be out in the world! The U.K version is published on the 10th June 2021!!!
This October I am going to start new writing projects and am looking forward to attending the Wild Goose Festival at Peter Pan Moat Brae. I wrote the monologues for the Bertrada (Story Mothers) stories and am excited to see the told as an oral performance. I am giving a talk on my fellowship so far and will be leading a nature writing workshop in the wonderful Neverland Discovery Garden. The events are free but do need booking in advance. To book click here.