πŸ“š An Interesting Week In The World Of Writing πŸ“š

This week has seen the 400th celebration of the world’s most famous bard. This is of course William Shakespeare, without whom we wouldn’t have the huge array of plays, well-used sayings, or indeed vocabulary that we have today. My favourite Shakespeare play would have to be ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’, so with this in mind, here’s a wonderfully whimsical and fairy-filled extract!

β€œOver hill, over dale,
Thorough bush, thorough brier,
Over park, over pale,
Thorough flood, thorough fire,
I do wander everywhere,
Swifter than the moon’s sphere;
And I serve the fairy queen,
To dew her orbs upon the green.
The cowslips tall her pensioners be:
In their gold coats spots you see;
Those be rubies, fairy favours,
In those freckles live their savours:
I must go seek some dewdrops here
And hang a pearl in every cowslip’s ear.
Farewell, thou lob of spirits; I’ll be gone:
Our queen and all our elves come here anon.”

~ William Shakespeare, A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

On a much sadder note, you will also of course know about Victoria Wood’s tragic and untimely passing. 😒 She really was my much-loved heroine and a few years ago, I was fortunate enough to meet and gain an autograph from her wonderful self. I’d happened be in the Beatrix Potter tea-room in the Lake District with my husband and 2 young daughters, when low-and-behold she wandered in! Well, I almost choked on my toasted tea-cake with sheer excitement and adulation! Needless to say, she will be forever missed and in my eyes, she has always been a national treasure. May you rest in peace Victoria. Xxx

 

Rest In Peace Victoria Wood xxxx
Rest In Peace Victoria Wood xxxx

As for news from the world of ‘Whimsy Wood’, well we’ve been busy little bees as usual. Work has started on the production of my 9th Whimsy Wood book, ‘Fearne Fairy And The Chocolate Caterpillar’, which is very exciting! This book is written for this current month of April, so you’ll read about Fearne’s ‘brilliant white bindweed umbrella’, vibrant violets, beautiful bluebells and ‘fairy foxgloves’ amongst other things!

'Fairy Foxgloves' Growing In Whimsy Wood.
‘Fairy Foxgloves’ Growing In Whimsy Wood.

You’ll also get to meet a new character, ‘Mustard the Magpie Moth Caterpillar’, who becomes Fearne’s best friend. Just as ‘Posie Pixie’ had her own ‘partner in crime’ shall we say in ‘Wibble Woodlouse’, it seemed only right to create a ‘side-kick’ for Fearne. πŸ˜‰

Meet 'Mustard The Magpie Moth Caterpillar'!
Meet ‘Mustard The Magpie Moth Caterpillar’!

Well, I’d better get on and be creative elsewhere, so I shall bid you farewell and wish you all a wonderfully whimsical weekend!

Sarah Hill, children’s author and creator of The Whimsy Wood Series.

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An Egg-cellent Month!

When I look back at the start of this marvellous month of March, I can barely believe how much my ‘Whimsy Wood’ children’s series and I have achieved.

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We were invited to numerous primary schools and nurseries up and down the country, as part of book week. I was also asked to judge a children’s writing competition in the middle of the month, as shown in the top photo.

Book 8, ‘Fearne Fairy And The Dandelion Clocks’, was launched on Saturday March the 19th.

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Front Cover Of ‘Fearne Fairy And The Dandelion Clocks’

http://abelapublishing.com/fearne-fairy-and-the-dandelion-clocks–sarah-hill–abela-publishing_p31235594.htm

Finally, the beautiful, brand new ‘Whimsy Wood’ website went live on Sunday March the 20th. With this in mind, please note that this will be the last post on the Whimsy Wood blog here. Next week, you’ll find the weekly Whimsy Wood blog posts over on this wonderfully whimsical website :-Β http://www.whimsywood.co.uk

Well, all that’s left to say is, I hope you all have a wonderfully whimsical, chocolatey, sunshine-filled Easter! πŸ˜ƒ 🐣 🐰 πŸ’

Sarah Hill, children’s author and creator of The Whimsy Wood Series.

πŸ“š 🌬 πŸ˜ƒ Another Whirlwind Week For Whimsy Wood! πŸ˜ƒ 🌬 πŸ“š

 

The wheels of ‘Whimsy Wood’ were back on the road again last week, as I was invited to visit Townsend Barn Nursery in Poulshot, Wiltshire, to read ‘Posie Pixie And The Pancakes’, book 7 in my Whimsy Wood children’s series.

Visiting Townsend Barn Nursery in Poulshot, Wiltshire.
Visiting Townsend Barn Nursery in Poulshot, Wiltshire.

The pre-school children certainly enjoyed meeting all the woodland folk that I brought with me and loved listening to Posie’s February adventure! They were able to take home Whimsy Wood bookmarks and information about book 8, ‘Fearne Fairy And The Dandelion Clocks’, which is due out this Saturday! πŸ˜ƒ

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Talking of which, the first hardback and paperback copies of ‘Fearne Fairy And The Dandelion Clocks’ arrived last week! I know I’m biased, but they really do look absolutely beautiful! If you’d like to pre-order a copy you can do so here :-Β http://abelapublishing.com/preorder–fearne-fairy-and-the-dandelion-clocks–book-8-in-the-whimsy-wood-series_p31235401.htm

The 1st Hardback and Paperback Copies Of Fearne Fairy And The Dandelion Clocks!
The 1st Hardback And Paperback Copies Of Fearne Fairy And The Dandelion Clocks!

I was also invited to Hamp Academy in Bridgwater, Somerset last week, to run 2 creative writing workshops for their junior pupils. We had lots of fun, creating woodland story arcs in the form of game boards. The children were then able to write a short woodland story, using their story game boards. This tied in with a woodland visit the children had been on a few days before.

Finally, I was asked to judge a children’s writing competition run by The Little Hen House in Devizes, Wiltshire and the prize-giving party was last Saturday. The entries we’d received were really wonderful; full of imagination and creativity. Huge congratulations to the winners and indeed all the children who entered. πŸ˜ƒ

Along with a treasure hunt around The Little Hen House, the children were treated to a ‘pin the beak on the chicken’ game and craft activities. Following some essential celebratory slices of cake, the children settled down to hear the first ever public reading of ‘Fearne Fairy And The Dandelion Clocks’!

I’m delighted to say that it went down a storm and the children headed home, happily carrying their party bags and prizes. Hopefully, they had wonderfully whimsical dreams that evening, of little hens getting up to mischief in Whimsy Wood with Fearne Fairy perhaps?! πŸ˜ƒ

The mention of dreams has just reminded me, that I really should be finishing off the content required for Whimsy Wood’s new website, which will go live this Sunday! So, I shall bid you farewell and wish you a wonderfully whimsical week!

Sarah Hill, children’s author and creator of The Whimsy Wood Series.

✨ πŸ“š 😊 A Whimsical Website And A Writing Competition! 😊 πŸ“š βœ¨

Hello there and a happy Thursday to you all! I hope you’ve been having a wonderfully whimsical week so far and thank goodness it’s nearly Friday! My desperate need to reach the weekend, has been fuelled by the frenetic pace of this week. I honestly don’t know if I’ve been coming or going! Mostly ‘going’ I suspect though and probably ’round the twist’!

Anyway, needless to say that the wheels of ‘Whimsy Wood’ have been whirring away and at an equally hectic speed. This is because book 8, ‘Fearne Fairy And The Dandelion Clocks’, is going through its formatting stage, ready for its release on March the 19th. Here’s another of Sarah Mauchline’s (our incredible illustrator) enchanting illustrations for this next Whimsy Wood book.

Poor 'Fearne Fairy' has crash landed again! 😁
Poor ‘Fearne Fairy’ has crash landed again! 😁

Along with the formatting of book 8, a wonderfully whimsical website is currently being created for my Whimsy Wood children’s series. This website will contain inside information about the series and background information on all the Whimsy Wood characters. There will be regular children’s competitions and woodland-related craft ideas, along with Whimsy Wood’s own little online shop. I am really excited about Whimsy Wood’s website and I hope you like it when it’s completed. 😊

In other Whimsy Wood news, I’m delighted to share with you information regarding a children’s writing competition! This is being run by The Little Hen House in Devizes, Wiltshire. If you’re not familiar with this super shop, I can tell you that The Little Hen House stocks charming children’s clothes for ages 0-8 years old.

They opened their children’s writing competition on January the 23rd, (National Handwriting Day) and the deadline for entries is February the 23rd. So if you were looking for a half-term activity for your children, then this could be a splendid suggestion. 😊

In the afternoon of Saturday March the 12th, I shall be giving out the prizes to the wonderful winners of this writing competition. This prize-giving event will be held in The Little Hen House and there’ll be a treasure hunt, colouring-in station and a Whimsy Wood book reading. For further information regarding this competition, please contact The Little Hen House directly. Thank you.

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Well, that’s all from me for today. Time is pressing and my ‘to-do’ list isn’t getting any shorter!

With whimsical wishes,

Sarah Hill, children’s author and creator of The Whimsy Wood Series.

✨ πŸ“š πŸ˜ƒ A Brand New Whimsy Wood Children’s Book Is Coming Soon! πŸ˜ƒ πŸ“š βœ¨

Yes, it’s official! The eighth Whimsy Wood children’s book, ‘Fearne Fairy And The Dandelion Clocks’, is currently going through its formatting process and will be released on Saturday March the 19th! I am tingling with excitement that this book, which I originally wrote a good 2 years ago now, will be published very soon. 😊

Now, as you may or may not know, there are 35 books in my Whimsy Wood series for 5-8 year olds and these are divided into 5 sets of 7 books. This means that ‘Fearne Fairy And The Dandelion Clocks’ is the 1st book in the 2nd set of 7 books.

Front Cover Of 'Fearne Fairy And The Dandelion Clocks'
Front Cover Of ‘Fearne Fairy And The Dandelion Clocks’

This is the 1st time that readers, young and old alike, will meet Whimsy Wood’s Fearne. I’m relieved to say that she isn’t your typical pink, sparkly and sugary-sweet fairy. She is certainly a lovely wee creature, but she has flaws just like you and I. For example, Fearne’s brilliant at flying, but she’s completely hopeless when it comes to landing!

As you may remember, every Whimsy Wood children’s book is written for a specific month in the calendar, so the flora and fauna change as you read through the series. ‘Fearne Fairy And The Dandelion Clocks’ is written for the marvellous month of March, so you’ll read about white wood anemones and yellow daffodils, amongst other things.

White Wood Anemones a Growing In Whimsy Wood
White Wood Anemones Growing In Whimsy Wood

You’ll also meet 2 new Whimsy Wood characters, ‘Bertie and Beatrice Bramble’ who are baby bunny twins. ‘Raspberry Rabbit’, the twins’ auntie, returns in this story having last featured in book 4, ‘Posie Pixie And The Fireworks Party’.

Front Cover Of 'Posie Pixie And The Fireworks Party'
Front Cover Of ‘Posie Pixie And The Fireworks Party’

For now, I’ll leave you with one of the wonderful illustrations from ‘Fearne Fairy And The Dandelion Clocks’, by our fabulous illustrator Sarah Mauchline.

Fearne Fairy's Looking Jolly Busy In Her Woody Home! 😊
Fearne Fairy’s Looking Jolly Busy In Her Woody Home! 😊

I’ll also share with you one of the reviews that we have in already for this new ‘Whimsy Wood’ children’s book :-

” The Whimsy Wood folk are timeless characters in the fashion of Potter, Milne and White. In time, The Whimsy Wood Series is likely to find its place in the lexicon of classic children’s literature.” – Readers’ Favourite, U.S.

Wishing you all a wonderfully whimsical day!

Sarah Hill, children’s author and creator of The Whimsy Wood Series.

😁 There’s Nothing Like A Deadline To Focus The Mind! πŸ˜

OK. So you’ve guessed it. I have a pending deadline and I really need to sharpen my creativity and get writing! This is all regarding ‘Fearne Fairy And The Dandelion Clocks’, the eighth book and start of the second set, in my ‘Whimsy Wood’ children’s series.

Now, the book in question is due to be launched this Spring and it’s already been edited. Our editor was perfectly happy with it. TheΒ odd grammatical amendment needed of course, but apart from that we were good to go……Until my creativity, need for absolute perfection and panic over what ‘the world and his wife’ will think of this next whimsical instalment, happened to get in the way. Oh the joys of insecurity and self-criticism!

Anyway, I have spent the last few days in a complete tail-spin as I unpick the story, add more dilemma and humour. This can only be a good thing surely? And the extra work and stress I have put on myself will all be worth it in the end right? Well, let’s hope so!

For now I’ll leave you with the current version of the front cover for ‘Fearne Fairy And The Dandelion Clocks’ and get back sharpish to my own drawing, or rather writing board!

Front Cover For Fearne Fairy And The Dandelion Clocks! πŸ˜ƒ πŸ“š ✨
Front Cover For Fearne Fairy And The Dandelion Clocks! πŸ˜ƒ πŸ“š ✨

Wishing you all a wonderfully whimsical weekend.

Sarah Hill, children’s author and creator of The Whimsy Wood Series.

 

✨ New Year, New Thoughts βœ¨

With the beginning of a new year, there often comes the need for change. The world of ‘Whimsy Wood’ and I are no different! With this in mind, there are a number of new and exciting things that I can tell you about, that are planned for my ‘Whimsy Wood’ children’s series this year. 😊

The first thing being the creation of an all-singing, all-dancing ‘Whimsy Wood’ website! The second thing being the creation of some unbelievably cute ‘Whimsy Wood’ stationery, which you will be able to obtain from this whimsical website! The final thing is the creation of book 8, ‘Fearne Fairy And The Dandelion Clocks’! I wrote this March story a while ago now, so I really can’t wait to see it in all its paperback glory!

In the meantime and if you can’t possibly wait until the release of this next wonderfully whimsical book, then please check out ‘Posie Pixie And The Snowstorm’ which is now available in hardback! Thank you. 😊 http://abelapublishing.com/posie-pixie-and-the-snowstorm–book-6-in-the-whimsy-wood-series-hardback_p31232290.htm

Front cover of 'Posie Pixie And The Snowstorm'!
Front cover of ‘Posie Pixie And The Snowstorm’!

This is my 6th ‘Whimsy Wood’ book and it’s written specifically for this wintry month of January. It was awarded the ‘Story Monster Approved’ seal back in October last year and it was a tied winner (with ‘Posie Pixie And The Pancakes’, book 7 in my series) in ‘The Royal Dragonfly’ children’s book awards at the end of this year. Not bad going really! πŸ˜ƒ

As for news from ‘Whimsy Wood’ itself, well ‘Wilma Waxwing’ has come to visit her good friend ‘Mrs Spottisdowne the sparrow’. Wilma hails from cooler climes you see and so she likes to come to ‘Whimsy Wood’ for her winter holidays. It’s actually warmer in ‘Whimsy Wood’ presently, than where she lives back home! ❄️

'Wilma Waxwing' arriving in 'Whimsy Wood' for her winter holiday! 😊
‘Wilma Waxwing’ arriving in ‘Whimsy Wood’ for her winter holiday! 😊

Also, ‘Wibble Woodlouse’ was the first of the woodland folk to spot the snowdrops flowering in ‘Whimsy Wood’! ‘Fearne Fairy’ will be pleased, as her skirts are made from snowdrop petals and her old skirt had holes in, poor fairy. Looks like she’ll now be able to make herself a new snowdrop skirt! 😊

The 1st snowdrops flowering in 'Whimsy Wood'. 😊
The first snowdrops flowering in ‘Whimsy Wood’. 😊

Well, I’m off to try and be creative elsewhere, so I shall bid you farewell and wish you a wonderfully whimsical week! πŸ˜ƒ ✨

Sarah Hill, children’s author and creator of The Whimsy Wood Series.

Mystical magic!

This afternoon we ventured to the mystical, magical place that is Avebury, to admire the splendid stones and for the children to enjoy a ‘creepy cat trail’ that was on Β as a half-term activity. Every time I’ve visited this amazing site, I’ve been transfixed by these silent stones and their almost magical presence. I couldn’t help but think about ‘Posie Pixie’, ‘Wibble Woodlouse’ and ‘Raspberry Rabbit’ from my ‘Whimsy Wood’ children’s series and how much they would love to explore the amazing Avebury stones and the undergrowth around them.

” Yes, yes, yes, that’s all very well,” I hear you say. “What has magic got to do with your ‘Whimsy Wood’ series? Aren’t all your characters woodland creatures?” Aaaah, well most of the ‘Whimsy Wood’ folk are indeed woodland creatures, as you rightly say. However, there is a rather special magical resident within ‘Whimsy Wood’. She is none other than ‘Fearne Fairy’ of course! Now Fearne makes her first appearance in book 8, ‘Fearne Fairy And The Dandelion Clocks’, where we also get to meet ‘Bertie and Beatrice Bramble’, the twin bunnies who live by the bluebell patch in ‘Whimsy Wood’. If you happen to be looking for a short story to read to your children over half-term, then please click on the link below and scroll to page 12. There you will find ‘Fearne Fairy And The Snarrot’, which was published in this month’s ‘Senior Siren’ magazine. Can you indeed deduce what a ‘Snarrot’ is before you get to page 12?! I hope you enjoy my fun and quirky short story πŸ™‚

http://sclt.us/download/i/mark_dl/u/4009891684/4614688212/SS21.pdf

It’s likely to be late summer 2015 before book 8, ‘Fearne Fairy And The Dandelion Clocks’ is published, as book 5, ‘Posie Pixie And The Christmas Tree’, is due to be launched this coming Saturday at WHSmith, 43-44 Fore Street, Trowbridge, Wiltshire, BA14 8EJ, from 2pm. Something rather magical and related to book 5 arrived in the post yesterday. It was this fabulously festive banner for ‘Posie Pixie And The Christmas Tree’!

 

Banner for 'Posie Pixie And The Christmas Tree', book 5 in my 'Whimsy Wood' series
Banner for ‘Posie Pixie And The Christmas Tree’, book 5 in my ‘Whimsy Wood’ series

So, if you’re free on Saturday October the 25th and would like a signed copy of my ‘Whimsy Wood’ children’s books, then do come along. I’ll look forward to meeting you! πŸ˜‰