Monday 17 June 2019

Author Visits: Putnoe Primary

I'd like to say a big THANK YOU to brilliant librarian Catherine Brugnoli and all the students and staff of Putnoe Primary School for the amazing welcome they gave me when I visited them last week!

This is a school where they read both Varjak Paw and Phoenix, so many of the students had already read at least one of my books.  It was a pleasure to talk to them about reading and writing, and to hear about their favourite books.  And it was a pleasure to answer their fantastic questions!  

It was also amazing to see some of the work that they'd been doing with my books.  Here's a superb Phoenix display from Year 5, who have some very talented artists and writers – some of whom I think will soon be writing their own books!

We didn't have quite enough time to answer all the questions, so if anyone at Putnoe has any more questions, or would like to say anything about the visit or my books, just leave me a comment below.  And if anyone missed out on getting a signed book on the day, and would like one now – you can always order one via Mrs Brugnoli and Rogan's Books.  I'm always happy to sign bookplates for readers!


Anonymous said...

If you could meet another author who would it be? ~Abigail

Anonymous said...

Why is your book Phoenix called Phoenix?

Anonymous said...

When you came into the school what was your favourite thing about it ~Oliver~

Anonymous said...

Thank you for visiting our school!

Anonymous said...

To Sf Said
Hi Sf Said you came and visited our school last week and answered some questions but didn’t get round to me and my question was will there be a second Phoenix and if there will please reply soon

From Ibrahim

Anonymous said...

I am you No.1 fan. Your the best author ever.

Anonymous said...

When you came to our school what was your favourite thing about it ?

Anonymous said...

I have 2 questions for you SFSaid as you didn’t get round to me on the day. My 2 questions for you are:
If you could be any author other than yourself who would you be? And
If you could have any other job except from an author what would you be?


Anonymous said...

Thank you for visiting Putnoe Primary School we love all of your books I especially like Phoenix! I also have another question If you could live in any of your books what book would it be and what character would you be?

Anonymous said...

If you had to choose 1 book to read for the rest of your life what book would you read?

Anonymous said...

Hi, I have read your book Phoenix and I loved it.I am reading it again as it id so good. If you could change one part in Lucky's life, what would it be?
Georgia~ Rembrandt

Anonymous said...

Hi I’m you No.1 fan :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) . Your the best author ever.

Anonymous said...

In Rembrandt class what was your favourite piece of art from Phoenix?

Anonymous said...

Hello, thank you for visiting Putnoe Primary School. We love your books especially Phoenix. This is my favourite book. Thank You for seeing our Phoenix Artwork and our writing books about Axxa. Our learning group has created this since we LOVE your book. Also, thanks for telling us how to be an author and telling us about your new books. Did you know? I AM AN AUTHOR! Hope you come again soon! From Wahid,Rembrandt Class

Anonymous said...

I’m your biddest most hugest fan in the world I loved your book Phoenix and Varjak Paw 🐾 🐱

From Arjunveer in Rembrandt

(PS: I am your biggest fan!😄😋)

Anonymous said...

I love your latest book Phoenix I can’t wait to read tiger when it comes out

Anonymous said...

What do you think is the best part in Phoenix,was it when lucky found out who his dad was or when luckys mother died ~ Abigail

Anonymous said...

I love your books Phoenix and Varjak paw 🐾 🐱 you are the best

What was your favourite book to draft

Anonymous said...

Hi S.F Said, we all enjoyed your visit to Putnoe Primary School. I love your books and I am really excited for your new book. From Daniella yr 5

Rubens Class said...

Hi there SF Said,

The children in Rubens class still have a few more burning questions to ask you...

1. Who has been your greatest inspiration throughout your career?
2. Who was your childhood hero?
3. What did your mum read to you as a child?

Looking forward to hearing from you.

Numa said...

Hi S.F Said, I really love all of your books and I really appreciate you came to our school and I’ve still got one more burning hot question which is.........

If you could live in one of your books what would it be and what character would it be?

Anonymous said...

I love your book phonix especially the suprise towers the end with luckys dad and who he actually is

My only question is what is the book called phonix

Jack Rembrandt

SF Said said...

Hello to everyone at Putnoe, and thank you all so much for leaving me such great comments & questions! I really enjoyed visiting your school, and it's brilliant to hear that you enjoyed it too - so thank you to Archie, Wahid, Arjunveer, Daniella, Jack and everyone else who left me such nice comments!

I'll do my best to answer some of your questions below, but for anyone who wants to know more about how I wrote Phoenix - and to see an early draft compared with the final draft! - here's a blog I made about writing that I hope you will find interesting:

SF Said said...

And now I'll answer some questions...

1) Abigail, if I could meet another author, it would be William Blake, as he wrote the poem The Tyger that has inspired my new book TYGER! You can read a bit more about that here, if you'd like to know more:

2) Phoenix is called Phoenix for a lot of reasons - one of which is the mythology at the heart of the book, which is based on the ancient myth of the phoenix. I wrote about that in this blog:

3) Oliver, my favourite thing about visiting your school was meeting all of you! It's very inspiring for an author to meet readers who have enjoyed your books - especially brilliant readers like you!

4) Ibrahim, I don't think I will write a second Phoenix book - I've gone as far as I can with those characters. But if you would like to read more stories about them - I would be totally honoured and thrilled if YOU were to write them yourself! Some of the first stories I ever wrote were based on other stories that I loved. And if you would like to write a Phoenix story - here are some writing tips you might find useful:

5) Shanay, if I could be any other author, I think I would be Jacqueline Wilson - she has written over 100 books and they're all great! I wish I could write quicker. And I have had other jobs - I worked as a journalist for a long time, which is a good job for a writer, because it is also a form of writing, and sometimes you get to interview people you really admire. And one of the people I got to interview was... Jacqueline Wilson!

6) If I had to choose 1 book to read for the rest of my life - I think it might be the dictionary. Seriously - dictionaries are amazing. I can spend hours just looking at them, discovering new words!

7) Georgia, I think Lucky has a very difficult life, especially towards the end of the book, so in a way, I'd want to change all of it, to give him an easier time! But if I did that, then he would never become what he ends up becoming, and would never do what he ends up doing. So maybe it's better as it is!

8) My favourite piece of art in Phoenix is probably the illustration in Chapter Forty. I was absolutely blown away when I first saw that, and still am, every time I see it. But I think Dave McKean is an incredible artist, and for me, every illustration in the book is amazing!

9) My favourite part in Phoenix is probably the ending. It wasn't easy to write, but I think it's the best thing I've written so far... (except for TYGER!)

10) Rubens Class - my greatest inspiration has always been the books, films & other stories that I love myself. My heroes were the people who wrote those stories. And my mum read to me a lot as a child - I remember a book called The Little Prince that she read to me until I could read it myself. That was the book that taught me how to read, so I still love it today!

11) Numa, I'm not sure I'd want to live in any of my books, or be one of my characters - dangerous things are always happening to the characters in my books! I think I'd rather live in my own life, where I get to go the library every day and work on my new book!

Thanks again to everyone for the fantastic comments & questions - HAPPY READING & HAPPY WRITING to you all!

Unknown said...

Cezanne - Thank you for coming in and talking to us about your books. We hope you enjoyed visiting our school, we had so much fun listening to you and talking to you about your books. We are so happy that you signed our class book of Varjak Paw and are still reading and enjoying it at the moment. We are at the point where Vajak has just completed his first kill. We can't wait to find out what happens next! We think you are the best author.

We have some more questions for you:
1. Why did you want to become an author?
2. What inspired you to become an author?
3. Why did you choose to write Phoenix?


kerr said...

Hi! I'm Mikey from putnoe primary school, and i have a question to ask as unfortunately, you didn't get round to me on the day. :C. My question is, if you could twist the plot of any of your storys, which would it be, why, and what to? Thanks!
Age 10
Putnoe Primary School.

Anonymous said...

Sf said I love your book phoenix and I would like to know if you have any writing tips

SF Said said...

Thank you so much for the kind words about Phoenix! Here's a blog I made about writing, with many writing tips in it - I hope you find it helpful:

Mikey, I think I have already twisted the plots of my stories as far as I can! When you write many drafts of a story, you try to go through all the possibilities, to make it as good as you possibly can. That's why it takes me so long to write each book!

And Cezanne, thank you for your incredibly words about the visit, and about Varjak Paw! I hope you enjoy the rest of his story. To answer your questions - the books that I loved when I was young inspired me to write my own books. I loved them so much, I wanted to write something that was even half as good one day. I wrote Phoenix because it was the story I most wanted to read myself. All writers are really just readers who take one more step, and write the stories they want to read. You can do this too! I don't think you have to be a genius to be an author, or to have perfect spelling and grammar, or anything like that. I think you just have to love stories, and be willing to do whatever it takes to make your stories as good as you can. Have a look at the link I left above if you want some more writing tips!