Southerly by David Haywood

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Southerly: One for the Kids

19 Responses

  • tussock,

    Reminiscent of Captain Underpants. Well done, Sir.

    Since Nov 2006 • 609 posts Report Reply

  • Ben Austin,

    I'd like to have it noted for the public record that I have never thought Mary was a common name.

    London • Since Nov 2006 • 1021 posts Report Reply

  • Peter Hunter,

    Very cute....I have a red headed daughter and I can just see her getting caught up in an adventure just like that one! I really want to see the one about the Snot Fairy.....

    Merry Christmas ya'll

    Wellington • Since Jan 2007 • 8 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Brislen,

    Yes, bring on the Snot Fairy I say....

    I too have a red-haired daughter. What is it with these recessive genes bubbling up? Curious.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 200 posts Report Reply

  • David Haywood,

    I really want to see the one about the Snot Fairy...

    Yes, bring on the Snot Fairy I say...

    Perhaps this is where the real gender divide in literature occurs. The lads seem to like the idea of a snot fairy but the lasses most thoroughly reject the concept. One of the publishers said she wouldn't even read anything that contained the words 'snot fairy'. My dear mum (who road-tests these stories on my nieces and nephews) keeps saying: "couldn't you change it to an ear-wax fairy?".

    Ironically the story is about the snot fairy's rejection by mainstream fairy society. The opening lines are: "The snot fairy was the most misunderstood of all the fairies".

    Dunsandel • Since Nov 2006 • 1156 posts Report Reply

  • Deborah,

    Ah.... snot jokes. This one is courtesy of my nine year old daughter.

    Q. What's the difference between snot and broccoli?

    A. Kids don't eat broccoli.

    New Lynn • Since Nov 2006 • 1446 posts Report Reply

  • Tim McKenzie,

    I think that story's far too scary for most kids---starting the school year on Boxing Day?
    <><

    [**REPLY:** Ha -- you spotted my chronological glossing-over! It was originally written when we were in Boston (although, even there, they don't start school again on Boxing Day -- but they do restart school cruelly soon after Christmas). -- DH]

    Lower Hutt • Since Apr 2007 • 120 posts Report Reply

  • steven crawford,

    Perhaps this is where the real gender divide in literature occurs. The lads seem to like the idea of a snot fairy but the lasses most thoroughly reject the concept. One of the publishers said she wouldn't even read anything that contained the words 'snot fairy'. My dear mum (who road-tests these stories on my nieces and nephews) keeps saying: "couldn't you change it to an ear-wax fairy?".

    Ironically the story is about the snot fairy's rejection by mainstream fairy society. The opening lines are: "The snot fairy was the most misunderstood of all the fairies".

    That is pretty ironic. Is this a story about child hood sexual abuse, David?

    Atlantis • Since Nov 2006 • 4356 posts Report Reply

  • David Haywood,

    Is this a story about child hood sexual abuse, David?

    Definitely not, Steven. I only do light-hearted humour. But, I must say, such a suggestion would do credit to any university English department.

    By the way, the numbers have now exploded my hypothesis about a gender divide in snot fairy appreciation. I've had a dozen or so emails today -- and slightly more women than men have requested online publication of 'The Snot Fairy's Night of Crime'.

    So I guess it must be a taste divide, rather than a gender divide, when it comes to snot fairies.

    Dunsandel • Since Nov 2006 • 1156 posts Report Reply

  • steven crawford,

    Definitely not, Steven. I only do light-hearted humour.

    I didn't mean to start-el you with that one. actually I did, I'm a snot fairy.

    I ran the title past my seven year old fairy story enthusiast daughter. She eagerly approves of the snot fairy. I like it, even without the unspeakable seriousness. my wife totally rejects it out right. She reads mills and boon)

    Atlantis • Since Nov 2006 • 4356 posts Report Reply

  • linger,

    it must be a taste divide, rather than a gender divide, when it comes to snot fairies.

    obviously, as signalled by Deborah (quoting daughter) above:

    Q. What's the difference between snot and broccoli?
    A. Kids don't eat broccoli.

    Presumably if one were to puree the broccoli and add salt one might get a better reaction? or would it also have to be inserted nasally?

    Tokyo • Since Apr 2007 • 1905 posts Report Reply

  • linger,

    oh, booger...

    let me guess, the snot fairy's rejection by mainstream society results from it being seen as some kind of bogeyman.

    Actually, the user comments on Briggs' book seem equally appropriate here, David:

    This book would be of interest to any kid over 7, boys might go for it at an earlier age than girls - although be warned it's not suitable for sensitive parents. It's also ideal for well read teenagers and young adults, who will appreciate the sophisticated humour more.

    Tokyo • Since Apr 2007 • 1905 posts Report Reply

  • Rob Stowell,

    Its a great story David. And I'm also looking forward to the snot fairy.
    Publishers are wimpy weasels who only think about the market. And the problem there is that kids don't ahem, actually buy books themselves.
    Thanks for the Christmas present!

    Whakaraupo • Since Nov 2006 • 2098 posts Report Reply

  • Creon Upton,

    Wonderful stuff David. I'm sending your story to my niece immediately.

    Yeah, publishers and parents are a tremendous hurdle when it comes to kids getting to read what they really want. And no child is in the least concerned with chronological absurdity: a gorilla eating pavlova is fine, but we can't have school on boxing day.

    I particularly liked the cop removing his shoes and socks.

    But enough with the wise cracks about English Departments already. Please, indulge us: we so want to be seen to matter.

    Christchurch • Since Aug 2007 • 68 posts Report Reply

  • linger,

    I have some bad news about the snot fairy (and even the earwax fairy):
    it's been done -- albeit published only 2 months ago.

    Flim-flam Fairies
    Alan Katz, Illustrated by Michael Slack
    [...]
    A tale about how the Belly Button Lint Fairy, Earwax Fairy, Dirty Underwear Fairy, Clipped Toenail Fairy, Snot Fairy, Fart Fairy and others attempt to take over the Tooth Fairy's under-the-pillow enterprise. They try to profit from pliable bogeys, get funds from farts and make dirty underwear pay.

    ... er. actually, I gather that the last-mentioned is already a lucrative sideline in this city. But I hope that's not quite what Katz has in mind.

    anyway, the more positive conclusion is that there are some publishers out there willing to venture into areas more suited to children's than parents' sensibilities.

    Tokyo • Since Apr 2007 • 1905 posts Report Reply

  • Rob Stowell,

    Test readings on a pair of six-year-olds were favourable. All you need is ALA (American Library Association) to get on board- and given the positive- indeed, heroic- role of the librarian- that's a cinch. The snot fairy is not TM so full speed ahead! Just make sure that librarian gets a heroic role- perhaps the herm, pick the snot fairy out of a police line-up.

    Whakaraupo • Since Nov 2006 • 2098 posts Report Reply

  • David Haywood,

    Linger wrote:

    Flim-flam Fairies
    Alan Katz, Illustrated by Michael Slack

    That is indeed slightly peevish-making. Although since my story was finished on 29 March 2000, I believe I should be suing Mr Katz for copyright infringement (and not the other way around).

    Luckily, however, I've had a quick look at the link, and it's nothing like 'The Snot Fairy's Night of Crime' so it's not really a problem.

    Rob Stowell wrote:

    Test readings on a pair of six-year-olds were favourable. All you need is ALA (American Library Association) to get on board- and given the positive- indeed, heroic- role of the librarian- that's a cinch

    Delighted that it passed the test-reading on your offspring, Rob! And an excellent point about the librarians. It hadn't occurred to me before, but from now on I'm going to make all of my heroes librarians.

    Creon Upton wrote:

    But enough with the wise cracks about English Departments already. Please, indulge us: we so want to be seen to matter.

    Oh, I take back my cruel and thoughtless words. Actually, one of my favourite writers (C.K . Stead), did a good few years in an English Department -- so I can't entirely damn them...

    Dunsandel • Since Nov 2006 • 1156 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Wylie,

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 4591 posts Report Reply

  • Tiki East,

    Love the librarian tie-in or should I say wrestle-in. You'll be the toast of LIANZA. Great story, Have you thought about a sequel? maybe involving a crocodile from the tooth fairy?

    wellington • Since Dec 2007 • 4 posts Report Reply

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