I hope they will find the book fast paced and fun. I think the characters of Calllum, Sophie and Jinx are entertaining and likeable and Lester and his henchmen are suitably villainous. Lester also has a great evil plan that requires some serious thwarting. The book contains interesting inventions and strong action sequences. I think kids will also enjoy the book’s humour, particularly when applied to the character of Jinx.
What led to the decision to have the main character in a wheelchair?
When I had the idea for an evil character sucking the goodness out of kids I knew I needed a hero who was used to experiencing adversity and would be able to credibly challenge my villain. I thought a child confined to a wheelchair would immediately be underestimated by the villain and would be the sort of gutsy character that kids would enjoy getting behind. When I was writing Callum I was very careful to portray him as a typical teenage boy who didn’t dwell on his disability. I wanted the readers to see the boy instead of the wheelchair. I worked closely with the managing director of Trekinetic wheelchairs to make sure that Callum’s actions and attitude were believable.
Do you have any advice for aspiring young writers?
If you really, seriously want to be a writer you will have to be prepared to accept criticism and rejection of your work. You will need to be constantly editing and revising your writing and must realise that it is not an easy vocation to succeed in. But if you truly, passionately, want to become a writer don’t let anything stand in your way, keep trying and learning and refining your skills. And unless you marry a rich partner get used to eating soup and toast.