(Please note that the authors have
contributed their comments but are not able to answer questions
from readers unless they specifically say so below.)
Barbara Mitchelhill - Interview
Q. How did you start writing?
A. I was born in Rochdale and trained as a teacher.
I started writing for BBC TV and for children learning how to read.
Now I live in Shropshire with two dogs.
Q. Why do you write?
A. I like writing because it's a flexible job. I can
live in my head, make characters up and make them do all sorts of
things — but sometimes they seem to do what they want to do
— just like real people.
Q. You like dogs — do you write about them?
A. I have two dogs and I did write a book about one
dog we had called Katie. The book was called "Home for a Dog".
Q. Where do you get your ideas? Do you have any tips?
A. Be inspired by what's around you. In the Eric books
Eric is very like the boys I used to teach — not one particular
boy but a mixture of lots of different boys.
Q. Do you like reading?
A. I have a houseful of books and love reading —
you can't write if you don't read. I like all kinds of books —
mysteries, facts, histories.
Q. What have you been writing recently?
I have just finished another in the Damian Drooth Supersleuth series.
Look out for "How to be a Detective". There is a new Eric
book out in August 2003: "Eric and the Peculiar Pong".
It's about a perfume bottle with an odd effect.
Q. Do your readers ever give you ideas?
A. It was a schoolgirl who gave me the idea for, in
"Eric and the Voice of Doom", Auntie Rose's present of
Q. Is there anything your readers should know?
A. Look out for Eric on TV!
Barbara Mitchelhill's books at Amazon.co.uk
Barbara Mitchelhill - Biography
Author of "Eric and the Voice of Doom" (illustrated
by Bridget MacKeith), which was shortlisted in 2002-2003 for the
Experian Big 3 Book Award
Barbara Mitchelhill was born and grew up in Lancashire. After training
as a teacher, she taught English, Art and Drama in both comprehensive
schools and primary schools. It was during this time that she began
to write for BBC children's programmes and for educational publishers.
She now works part-time as an editor for a small educational publisher
and writes children's books the rest of the time.
Since giving up teaching to write full-time, she has written over
a hundred books for children who are learning to read as well as
books for older children.
Barbara is married with four grown-up daughters and lives in Shropshire
with her husband and two dogs called Jack and Jeff.
of her books include:
"Eric and the Striped Horror" (1996)
"Eric and the Wishing Stone" (1999)
"Eric and the Pimple Potion" (2000)
"Eric and the Green-Eyed God" (2001)
The latest Eric book is "Eric and the Voice of Doom"
and the next book will be "Eric and the Peculiar Pong",
to be published in August 2003 by Andersen
"Damian Drooth, Supersleuth - and the Case of the Disappearing
"Damian Drooth, Supersleuth - and the Case of the Pop Star's
Wedding" (2002) both illustrated by Tony Ross
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