Archive | July, 2013

Lovin’ The Sun!

15 Jul

I do not like the summer too much because it’s too hot lol but I hope you like it! Im going to Italy so that will be fun!



Hands up who’s feeling hot, hot, hot! Hasn’t this weather we’ve had lately been AMAZING? I’m absolutely loving it. Everything feels better to me when the sun shines, and it’s so rare to get this kind of weather in our country that it’s fantastic to see so many people making the most of it!

Here are some of the things I love best about the summer.

1. Finding a reclining chair and chilling out with a good book or magazine. One of my favourite summer reads is The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants.  The film’s pretty good too…but save that one for when the weather cools off!

2. Eating more lollies and ice creams than I do the rest of the year put together.

3. Muncing on summer fruits. Nectarines, cherries, plums, peaches, melon, strawberries, raspberries…yum, yum, I could chomp away all day.

4. ‘Borrowing’ my son’s paddling pool to cool off in.

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Our Fab New Children’s Laureate

15 Jul



I love the fact that we have a Children’s Laureate. It is, of course, a relatively new thing: whereas the first British Poet Laureate was ‘crowned’* in the 15th century by Henry VII, we didn’t have a Children’s Laureate until 1999 (Quentin Blake). Half a millennium gap!

Anyway, the point of this blog post is just to have a general rave about Malorie Blackman. I’m delighted by her appointment for a number of reasons. It’s been several years since we had someone who writes for older kids/teens, so I think that’s quite important right now. You almost want there to be another term for the position –  ‘Children’s’ Laureate may not feel that relevant to the average 13-year-old – though I think Malorie is famous and well-loved enough that it doesn’t matter.

I was impressed that Malorie wasted no time in challenging Michael Gove for his snobbish attitude to the…

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The joy of small stuff…

14 Jul

My baby brother was born on this day


Yeah, so when Big, Exciting Things happen, it’s great. But far more fun and rewarding is getting a buzz from the small stuff.

Small stuff that’s made me happy this week…

1. Leaving a surprise message and pressie for my stressed-by-SATs daughter. *HUG!*message

2. Having a very kind mum at my daughter’s school make me my very own Thing! (From my younger ‘You, Me and Thing’ series.)Keda's thing

3. Finding these ace wooden (WOODEN!) postcards at the Design Museum in London (made by a company called postcards

4. Being given beautiful flowers by publishers Barrington Stoke (my latest book for them is ‘Sweetness and Lies‘).BS flowers

*Happy sigh…*

What small stuff has made YOU smile this week?

Karen McCombie :c)

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My Favourite (Fictional) Families

14 Jul

Jacqueline Wilson’s books have a lot of great families of all shapes and sizes. And of course, Cathy Cassidy’s the choclate box girls.


I loved Natasha Farrant’s guest blog about families last week (I loved her book After Iris, too!), and it made me think about how obsessed I am with families in fiction, both as a writer and as a reader. My Kat Stephenson adventures are all about Kat and her squabbling, loving family, and my latest WIP is tentatively titled Family Magic, which…well, you can pretty much take it from there, can’t you? 😉 Even my last WIP (currently out on submission), which was supposed to be my family-free book, turned out to be all about created families, after all.


But I can’t help it. As a reader, I’m irresistibly drawn to family books. And I wondered: which are your favourites? Here are some of mine:

  • Noel Streatfeild’s Ballet Shoes: Oh, how I love the Fossil family! I could endlessly re-read Pauline, Petrova and Posy’s adventures, trials…

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Right! I have a challenge for you!!

14 Jul


girl reading 2summer reading challFor those of you at school or college, summer holidays have either already arrived or are blissfully close.

Of course, summer holidays equal lazing, mooching and endless free time for reading. Yay!

Speaking of reading, the Summer Reading Challenge launches this weekend.

For those who don’t know about it yet, it’s a scheme initiated by the fantastic Reading Agency, and encourages kids to visit their local libraries, read a bunch of books and get rewarded for doing it! So here’s MY challenge for YOU…

IF YOU’RE AT PRIMARY SCHOOL: Get yourself down to your local library and sign up for the Summer Reading Challenge now – AND tell your teacher, classmates and friends all about it!

IF YOU’RE A LITTLE BIT (OR A LOTTA BIT) OLDER: Explain about the Summer Reading Challenge to a younger sister, brother or cousin, or even your neighbours’ sons and daughters. They’ll love it!

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14 Jul

Hi. Sorry that I haven’t posted for nearly a year. It just a used to have another blog and then it got deleted so I didn’t want to post things here. But now I will post more often.:)