I'd like to say a huge thank you to Dom Hughes and to everyone at Springwell Junior School for the wonderful welcome they gave me when I visited them last week!
Springwell have just opened a fantastic new school library, and it was an absolute honour and a pleasure for me to open it for them!
There's a wonderful video of the moment we opened the library, which you can see by clicking this link. At that moment, and throughout the day as I talked to Years 6, 5, 4 and 3 about writing and books, it was inspiring for me as a writer to see the genuine excitement in that school around reading.
We didn't have quite enough time to answer all the questions that everyone had, so if anyone from Springwell would like to ask me another question, or if you just want to say something about the visit or my books – leave me a message below!
We were delighted that one of Springwell's most loved authors was able to come and visit . It was such an inspiration and the children were thrilled. Big Thank You!
i am reading Phoenix and iam on chapter 3, page 24. It is good so far.
That's great to hear! I'm glad you're enjoying Phoenix - please let me know what you think when you reach the end!
With best wishes,
Thank you so much for your lovely comment, and for the fantastic welcome on the day. It was a brilliantly organised visit, and so inspiring for me to see the amazing work that Springwell has been doing with my books!
Keep the Way alive,
Hello Mr Said,
First of all, a huge thank you for such a delightful visit to Springwell. Words can’t express how honoured we feel to have met and spoken to the author of The Varjak Paw.
I have many questions / comments to make. So, here I go! Now, I am the obnoxious admirer who loved reading The Outlaw Varjak Paw. You mentioned that there will be a sequel to The Outlaw Varjak Paw (Fingers crossed, sooner than later). I have, however, often wondered about a prequel featuring Jalal. Last year, when we studied The Varjak Paw, debate often arose regarding Jalal. Is he Varjak’s alter ego (their meetings during dreams), a character from the past (getting in touch with Varjak through dreams) or a real supernatural sort of character that actually existed in some sort of parallel reality? My previous class and I often felt like Jalal’s character remains uncharted and needs more exploring. I find it quite interesting that Sally Bones knew about the ways of the Jalal, making it apparent that he did exist, back in the times. In a nut shell, we would love a prequel featuring Jalal versus perhaps someone with some sort of ancestral link with Sally Bones. Perhaps too typical! Explains why I am not a writer.
That’s that! You also mentioned during the assembly that a couple of your very first books got turned down. Now, will we ever get a chance to read them? Do you ever wish to edit and publish these books? If not, can you possibly tell us what or rather who these books were about?
Lastly, I wish you all the best for Tyger. It will be in my library the day it is released. Keep us updated about your Tyger draft 4C and how it went.
Huge thanks for taking time to talk to us.
It was very nice meeting you. Thank you for signing my books. I have just started reading my first book and i'm really enjoying it so far.
Thank you so much - it was a pleasure to visit your school and sign your books. Happy reading!
With best wishes,
Thank you so much for your fantastic comment! It really was a pleasure for me to visit Springwell, and to meet such brilliant young readers and writers.
And thank you for your questions. The questions about Jalal are very interesting, and I think it's likely that the third Varjak book will touch on them. I can't say much more about that just yet, as my books always change enormously as I work on them, but that is what I'm thinking at the moment.
As for the books that got turned down, I don't think I'll return to them and rewrite them, as the amount of work required would be huge - I'd rather spend the time working on TYGER, the third Varjak book, and so on. But I have used elements of those rejected books elsewhere - in fact, one of my problems on Phoenix was solved by borrowing something quite big from the first book! - so I don't think the work is ever wasted.
And thank you for your kind words about TYGER! I'm now on draft 5a - I don't know how many more it will be before it's ready, but I've learned that it takes as long as it takes to make a book as good as it can be!
Thanks so much again, and keep the Way alive!
Hello Mr said
I could not believe I could meet you at school thanks alot and good luck 🍀 writing your next book (cant wait to read it)
Thank you so much! It was a real pleasure to visit your school. And I hope you enjoy TYGER when it's finished - if you'd like to know more about it, here's a link to a blog post with all the latest news.
With best wishes,
SF said (the best author)
I've got a question
Linking to your amazing, impossibe-to-put-down books what does your name stand for
Thank you so much! My full name is Sabah Falah Said. It's Arabic, because my family is originally from the Middle East. When I was growing up in London, no-one could ever pronounce it, so I ended up using initials to make it easier for people! But it turns out that some of my favourite authors have also used initials - JRR Tolkien, CS Lewis, and of course JK Rowling, although I did it before she did!
With best wishes,
Thankyou very much for telling me and I can under stand Arabic as I'm muslim. But u r write it is hard to pronounce
I would really like varjak paw but I cant find any
Can u come to our school again
Thank you very much for the kind comments! I hope I will visit Springwell again one day. They should have Varjak Paw in your school library, your local library, or a local bookshop - I'm sure if you ask they will find you a copy!
With best wishes,
I asked my teacher for varjak paw and i finally got one
That's great to hear! I hope you enjoy reading Varjak Paw.
I nearly finished I it is sooooooo nice. I wish all books were like this one
That's brilliant - well done! I'm glad you've enjoyed Varjak Paw. I think The Outlaw Varjak Paw and Phoenix might be even better...
These books keep on getting better and netter
Thank you so much, that's brilliant to hear! I hope that one day, TYGER (the book I'm working on right now) will be even better... Here's a link to a blog post I made about it if you'd like to know more!
I am reading phoenix and I am on the part were lucky and his mum have to leave and it is impossible for me to put this book down
That's amazing to hear, thank you! I hope you enjoy reading the rest of Phoenix - please let me know what you think when you get to the end!
I finished it in 3 days cause I kept on reading it and I love how you included the alien part
3 days?! That's brilliant!
I'm so glad you enjoyed Phoenix - thank you for letting me know!
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