NaNoWriMo Nov Day 20: Dan Smith

Posted by Jazz on Sunday November 20th, 2016

Today Dan Smith – author of no less than FOUR Chicken House books, including Big Game and his most recent novel, Boy X – has stopped by the blog to share his top tips for aspiring writers.

What would be your five top tips to budding writers?

1. Read, read, read. If you’re not a reader, it’s a pretty safe bet that you’ll never be a writer.

2. Write, write, write. It sounds obvious, but you’ll never be a writer if you don’t write anything - and, like many other things, writing takes practice.

3. Write with confidence and assurance and let your imagination run wild. Write the kind of book you would want to read.

4. Don’t wait for inspiration. Just write.

5. Be yourself and don’t spend too much time listening to advice from other writers.

For those hoping to take part in NaNoWriMo or enter the Times/Chicken House Children’s Fiction Competition, what would be your best tip for writing something every day?

Just write. Don’t give up. Writing is hard work and there will be times when you don’t feel like it, but you need to find a time, sit down, and write. The words you put onto the page might be the most awful rubbish you have ever written (or they might be the most excellent) but they will be words on the page and you will be closer to your goal. Words on the page can be reshaped or deleted during the editing process, but no writing is just a blank page. So don’t ever give up.

Enter the Times/Chicken House Children's Fiction Competition to be in with a chance of winning a £10,000 publishing contract! 

Dan Smith

Growing up, Dan Smith lived three lives: the day-to-day humdrum of boarding school, finding adventure in the padi fields of Asia and the jungles of Brazil, and in a world of his own, making up stories. Dan is the author of My Friend the EnemyMy Brother’s SecretBig GameBoy X, Below Zero and She Wolf. Nisha’s War is his seventh children’s book with Chicken House.

Dan lives in Newcastle with his wife and two children.


Posted by Jazz on Tuesday January 6th, 2015

A very happy 2015 to all! We're already really excited about what the year holds, not least because January is already off to a flying start. This month sees the release of both Catherine Doyle's dark YA romance VENDETTA and Dan Smith's thrilling action adventure BIG GAME, soon to be a major movie.

VENDETTA tells the story of Sophie, who is thrown into an unknown world of danger, love and revenge when the Priestly brothers move into town. Gritty, romantic and totally compelling, VENDETTA is set in present-day Chicago against the murky morality of the criminal underworld ...

For Sophie, it's a long dull summer in the Chicago suburbs until five mysterious brothers move into her neighbourhood. A chance encounter with one of them leaves her breathless. But all is not what it seems.

As the secrets of Nic's Sicilian heritage emerge and Sophie falls deeper into his world, her own family skeletons come to life. Caught up in a twisted game of revenge between two warring dynasties, the choice between love and family suddenly comes at a deadly price.

For slightly younger readers, BIG GAME is the perfect new year read. A thrilling survival story set in the Finnish wilderness, page will become screen in May - keep an eye out for the blockbuster movie starring Samuel L. Jackson!

13-year-old Oskari is sent into the cold wilderness on an ancient test of manhood. He must survive armed only with a bow and arrow. But instead, he stumbles upon an escape pod from a burning airliner: Air Force One. Terrorists have shot down the President of the United States.

The boy hunter and the world's most powerful man are suddenly the hunted, and so begins an extraordinary survival race against a powerful and deadly enemy ...

You can find both of these amazing new releases in stores now - what are you waiting for?

Follow Catherine Doyle on Twitter: @doyle_cat

Follow Dan Smith on Twitter: @dansmithauthor

Follow Chicken House on Twitter: @chickenhsebooks

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