As regular readers of this blog will know, last Saturday I was fortunate enough to be invited along to Grays Library in my capacity as a Doctor Who author and play second fiddle to a Dalek. (I was fully prepared for this and my suspicions turned out to be well-founded; everyone knew who the Dalek was whereas there were a fair few comments aimed in my direction along the lines of 'So, who are you then?') In fact, when I arrived the queue to meet the alien fiend was already out the door and half way down the street!
The hordes queue up for the chance to be exterminated.
Borders Books were there as well, with tables heaving with Doctor Who merchandise which the patiently-queuing fans were snapping up. I got to sit behind a table laden with more copies of The Horror of Howling Hill than I have ever seen together in one place. What was even more pleasing was how much (and how rapidly) the pile diminished during the day.
Author, ready to sign!
As well as the chance to meet a real Dalek, visitors to the family fun day were able to construct their own brilliant model versions and I have to thank Brandon and Kieran in particular for letting me post a picture of their finished masterpieces here. And I was only exterminated the once, which was nice.
Brandon's and Kieran's daleks.
There was also mask-making (Cybermen, Abzorbaloffs and Ood), a Doctor Who-themed library trail, a writing competition and a drawing competition, in which the entrants had to draw what they thought the Horror of Howling Hill looked like. I also got to help choose the winner at the end of the day.
And on top of all that there was live, Doctor Who-themed magic, courtesy of Darren McQuade. Darren even performed a trick on me involving my book, which had me genuinely amazed and delighted!
So I would just like to thank Thurrock Council and the all those involved in organising the event at Grays Library, particularly Rachel and Ann, as well as everyone who came along. A big shout out to Mark, who realised that I had written Bloodbones as well, and to the Dalek, who let me get close enough to have my photograph taken with it.
Author meets alien superfiend - you decide which is which.
And a huge thank you goes to Heather, Abbie and Gareth, from Borders Books' Lakeside store. They were thoroughly charming and made me feel right at home. And they sold lots of copies of my book as well!
Gareth, Abbie and Heather from Borders Books, Lakeside.
And my free frosted green pens went down a treat as well, which was nice.
Just one last thing; Daleks are a lot shorter in real life.