Mary's musings

Mary Hoffman, author of over 90 children's books, including the Stravaganza series and Amazing Grace, has begun a web journal which will be updated roughly once a week. You can read more on

Saturday, March 21, 2009


Well at last I know exactly what I have left to write in City of Ships - not only the last few chapters but the missing earlier scenes. I've done very good planning, received two books from the London Library and help from a friend and have been using the dining table to set up a (dry) sea battle!

It has to go on hold for a week though, as I'm off to Bologna tomorrow.

Coventry was great - very stimulating as always and great to see so many friends.

I saw the Byzantium exhibition at the Royal Academy and bought the catalogue and a gold torque. But I didn't find it quite such a sparker of ideas as the Babylon one.

Last night we saw Doctor Atomic by John Adams, which had some great music but absolutely atrocious libretto by Peter Sellars. A young ?Swedish couple in front of us did not return after he interval, they found the whole thing too embarrassing.

I wish that John Adams had been separated from Peter Sellars at birth - then his work would have been even better.

I've taken a break from Shakespeare to read Kevin Crossley-Holland's autobiography. What a strong sense of place he had from a young age. And his workroom in today's Guardian is the first one I've felt at all attracted to.

Also read First among Sequels, the 5th Thursday Next novel, which was slow going in the first half.

And this blog, which just maunders on about my daily life has been given the Sisterhood Award by TWO DIFFERENT BLOGGERS! There are Fiona Dunbar and the Bookwitch. I am humbled and honoured. Must get to bed now as I have not yet packed for Italy.

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