Webchat with girls who enjoy farting
I loved reading with my sons (rather than before them) and still believe that it's the best way to get on a level playing field with your children.
Anthony Horowitz: Edward Eliot was largely based on my father, Pointydogg! My children had a fairly different education to mine, although I did send them to private schools. They went to a nice day school in Hampstead until they were 13, then went to boarding school. My DS2 who is 10 would like to ask you what books you liked to read when you were 10? I loved the world of the books, the bizarre characters, the mix of humour and adventure. The first books I enjoyed were the Willard Price series: Elephant Adventure; Crocodile Adventure etc. They also enjoyed Stephen King but your daughter might dislike the violence and you might dislike some of the bad language. How about even trying Jane Eyre or Pride and Prejudice or it that too much of an ask? Inghouls 2: Despite being an avid reader, ds1 (10), like many boys, doesn't particularly enjoy writing fiction. It's a very long day when you're on your own all the time and you'd be surprised how much I can get through in ten or 11 hours (before my wife gets home and I have someone to talk to).I loved the Cape of Good Hope so much that I took off all my clothes and dived into the freezing water in a moment of madness/elation. Playdoughfree: Hi Anthony, My ds1 (11) would like to know which of your book characters is most like you? Anthony Horowitz: I'm afraid that none of the characters are really like me, apart from Tim Diamond, the dim detective in my Diamond brothers books. I just texted it to my son and he replied: "If he's not like any of his heroes, is he like one of his villains - maybe the one with the world tattooed on his head? Anthony Horowitz: Playdough, you have a very amusing son. I always have to remind myself that Alex is 14 and I'm 54, so we can't really be compared. Do you think it provided a lot of your motivation and ideas for writing or would you have ended up a writer regardless? Anthony Horowitz: I have to be careful when I talk about my unpleasant childhood, pointydogg.And if you don't mind spending a small fortune, a safari is unforgettable. Sorry to disappoint your 11-year-old but I'm nothing like Alex Rider. I probably am more more like the villains than the heroes in some ways; I do enjoy creating them. After all, I had wealthy parents, a stable family life, a solid education. Well, Orley Farm in Harrow-on-the-Hill, mainly, one of those vile 1960s prep schools that seemed determined to destroy – emotionally and psychologically – as many of its alumni as it could!This is an edited transcript of a live webchat with best-selling author Anthony Horowitz, who came to the Towers on 10 November 2009. Fruitshootsandheaves: Anthony, I don't think we've read any of your books.
He answered questions on his writing, his influences, his childhood and 'fessed up to a shameful deploying of his children involving book shop displays. Nice to start this session with a questioner who sounds so familiar! I would love to see Alex back on the screen but, on the other hand, films do have a way of spoiling books and I quite like the fact that Alex lives on in the imagination. Which one would you recommend to start with and I will suggest it to my children (they are 8, 12, 14 – oh and 16 but it's best not to worry about her! Anthony Horowitz: Fruitshoots, what a great question! For the eight-year-old, it's got to be Granny, one of my earlier books - rude and funny in the style of Dahl.From my experience, if parents aren’t interested in books, it’s unlikely their sons/daughters will be. I don’t think it's possible to write well if you're not enjoying it. Stewie Griffiths Mum: Your books are invariably promoted only for boys to the point where someone at a major high-street retailer suggested it wasn't "acceptable" reading for my daughter. Anthony Horowitz: Cocolepew, I started writing when I was eight and, in all honesty, I knew then that there was nothing else for me. I simply picked up a pen and and an old ledger and began scribbling stories, plays, poems, whatever. The stories take place between VE day and VJ day when the war was still, technically, continuing. We saw you at the Hay Festival this year and were all exhausted by your energy and enthusiasm.