From Hook to Book

Archive for the category “Chris Bell books”

New Year / New Edition/s

Roller-Coaster Ride new coverWhat better way to start the New Year than with a new edition of an old book baby! Just before Christmas, I was delighted to receive the new Cengage Learning multicultural version of my 2001 title Roller-Coaster Ride, re-illustrated by Samantha Asri to set the story in the Middle East for early Arabic readers.

I was surprised to find only a couple of words had been changed in the text: the main character’s name has changed from Rosie to Yasmin; hot dogs have become shawarmas (an Arabic meat dish cooked on a spit and served on a plate, or in a wrap etc.) and Asri’s vibrant illustrations portray Middle Eastern dress and an updated, ultra-modern theme park. Otherwise the book is pretty much as originally published.Rollercoaster Ride

I thought the best time to share this new version was when I was also launching a new edition of moi. You know, New Year’s resolutions and all that. Okay, it’s only one week into 2016, but so far, I’m on track to a new, improved version of Chris Bell writer. A fitter, slimmer, less creaky version! Well, I’m hoping so anyway.

Roller-Coaster Ride French editionToo many hours at the desk last year resulted in way too many sessions at the physiotherapist trying to straighten out the kinks and creaks and knead some very stiff, un-cooperative, lower back muscles back to their natural state. (Though I’m beginning to wonder if that state has permanently altered.) My own fault! Even though I stand up at my stand-up desk (at times) and regularly get up to make an obligatory cup of tea, I still can’t unpretzel this body. I admit though when I’m in the writing moment, the cup of tea goes cold, the sun shifts in the sky and all else is forgotten. It’s then the neck resorts to angle stupida and correct typing posture slumps into compaction mode.

Chris Bell on bike 2016

So time for a drastic author makeover, thanks to Santa, who brought me a brand new bike for Christmas. (Isn’t it gorgeous?) Yay! It’s fantastic fun too. Nothing compares with the wind in your face and thrill of zooming down the road. (Downhill is the only way I can zoom – yet!) But, oohh, it’s such hard work on the way home. Certain muscles are being dragged screaming to the party and complain bitterly of a hang-over the next day. But onwards I go, rewriting the book on Chris, determined to wrestle this reluctant body into healthy compliance. Oh, there’s plans  for other radical edits too. i.e. swimming. In an actual swimming cossy even! Pilates – an ongoing redraft. (I love it.) But foremost, less wine, less chocolate and desk snacking, more exercise in general and more awareness of the world beyond the desk.

Hello, 2016. Let the new regime rule. Now where’s my Fitbit?

 

 

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Big Books, Little Books

One of the most exciting things for authors is always the arrival of a package bringing their latest book/s. Or shiny new author copies.

Barnyard Dance Big and Little

Book deliveries have been a bit thin on the ground at my place over the past couple of years while I’ve been fully focused on writing and redrafting two historical novels, which, as much as writing these longer length works is my passion these days, also means a lot longer between celebratory bubbles. So it was especially exciting before Christmas to receive a BIG book version (426mm x 315mm) of my title The Barnyard Dance from Gilt Edge Publishing in New Zealand.

One of the things that drew me to write for Gilt Edge were their books’ gorgeous full colour illustrations and cover designs, and that, for some series, they produce BIG books. A large version for teachers to utilise.

Barnyard Dance internal 815kb

I’ve always loved The Barnyard Dance because it’s a fun to read, rhyming story, beautifully illustrated by Richard Hoit. Now I think I love its BIG brother even more.

This post started out simply to herald a new book arriving – or new version – and the thrill of it, but it also led me to search out my other kid’s fiction titles and, taking a fresh peek, it’s pretty exciting to see how many of my educational titles have been re-published internationally in different versions and formats, including braille and audio. Some feature new covers/colours/designs, new titles or changes in spelling, and quite a few have been translated into French and sold into Canada.

Here’s a few pics of some of my titles that have travelled and changed, if you’d like to play Spot the Difference.

Runaway

MacTavish's Creature

Snozza

Trapped

The Keycutters Grandson

The Grand Street Theatre Robbery

The Beast

Tall Tales

Scar

Rollercoaster Ride

Karting Kel

Jono's Rescue

H for Horrible

Darcy Devlin

Dominic's Collections3

Dominic’s collections including a braille version

Batty Aus and US version

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