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

Tuesday, December 08, 2009


Well, the first draft of the adult novel is finished and I'm now writing the next Grace picturebook, which has to be delivered by Christmas. The chapterheads for City of Ships have been corrected and the sea-battle plan approved.

The Kids Lit Quiz Final was won in Oxford by a local team of four boys from Wheatley.It was quite different from the regional finals, with 30 teams all racing to press buzzers. One of the only two questions no-one knew the answers to related to JanMark, who died in 2006. So sad that 120 of the brightest readers in the country had never heard of this marvellous writer.

I have only one Art History class left this term and last Thursday's was a field trip to the National Gallery, so I've seen Titians and Bellinis, Leonardo and Michelangelo, Sebastiano del Piombo and Raphael.

The Italian Literature has already finished till January and I have to write an essay for both courses by 8th Jan.

I've read Ann Turnbull's Alice in Love and War, Neil Shusterman's Everlost and Pat Walsh's first novel, The Crowfield Curse, which I'm reviewing for the Guardian.

I've also been watching, with absurd enjoyment, the comedy series on TV called Miranda. Only one left to go next week and each one has made me laugh out loud.

We went to the annual turning on of the Christmas lights in Bourton-on-the-Water. We haven't managed this for the last three years. We didn't buy much but it always marks the beginning of Christmas. And tomorrow we go to Oxford Street to do our Christmas shopping. Publishers' party on Thursday and Carol Service at the weekend - if only the parcel that we think holds our cards hadn't gone missing, we'd be completely immersed in Christmassy activities.

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