On Sunday evening I scanned in some of the train sketches from last week. It was a fair old trip to Bedford and back, so I did a few. As you can see, I was feeling a bit tired by the time I got there, having come straight from my day in Yew Tree Primary:
I went to Bedford to visit Margaret Beaufort Middle School in Riseley. I gave a couple of big lectures in the morning and I don't think I've ever had such an enthusiastic reception - the applause got me quite choked up to be honest.
When I've more time, I'll tell you about the remarkably enterprising war-comic artists I did my signings with over lunchtime (hi fellas!).
At the end of an equally lovely afternoon (dropping in on various art workshops and helping the children where I could) I spent the evening with friend and author Julia Jarman, who lives just up the road and who was kind enough to put me up.
People tend to think of author / illustrator teams as friends, but they often live at different ends if the country and sometimes never get to meet at all. Most meeting-up happens either at publisher's Christmas parties, or at literary festivals.
Since both Julia and I do lots of festival events, we have got to know one-another really well. It was great to spend a couple of nights chatting and relaxing with some wine and good food (great risotto Julia - thank you!).
On Saturday morning, Julia and I drove up to Corby for their Play on Words festival, where we spent the day having fun reading our stories of snakes, pirates and derring-do in Corby Library.
That evening on the train, nearly home, I was lucky enough to have a child across the aisle, sitting quite still, playing a game. His mum asked to see my sketch, as she said he was a very keen artist. If you're seeing this, hello Frank - keep up the good work!