FRENCH TRIP... OOH LA LA!
I am just back from an AMAZING visit to Paris to meet my French publishers - and of course, my awesome French readers!
My Chocolate Box Girls series (Filles aux Chocolat in France) are very popular in France and my visit began with a special Cathy Cassidy party with an amazing spread of cakes designed to look like those on the French covers. Yum! Readers and book bloggers came from far and wide to get their copies signed over the next few days, and I was given hugs and presents and interviewed for blogs and magazines... wow!
Now I'm home and working on a secret story to share with you early next year... nope, no clues, not telling! I'm also working on the second draft of Sweet Honey, which will be out in May... almost there! It's ages since I last blogged, but I promise to be less erratic in future... fingers crossed!
Oh, and there's just a little matter of Christmas to get ready for, too... are you all sorted yet? I think December is my favourite month... what's YOUR fave thing about December?
See you soon!
Nida Hannan, age 11 says…
WOW! Your sooo lucky Cathy!!!!! I just borrowed your book called 'Marshmallow Skye' from the libary and I loved it!!!!
Mehreen, age 15 says…
Wow, your so lucky Cathy :) I have always wanted to go to Paris!! ♥ x
Caitlin, age 13 says…
Paris is amazing! I went there in October and it is fantastic! wish I could have been there when you were! that would have been awesome!
- Nida Hannan, age 11 says…
SO LONG SUMMER...
MBFR Finalists at Puffin Towers - whoop!
This summer has been AWESOME... hot, happy and mega-busy! I've been lucky enough to meet lots of my lovely readers, too... you can see some of the kids I met at my events at Carfest North and the Edinburgh Book Festival here! The music for this cool slideshow was written and performed by Dream Teamer Zoe Screti - what a talent! If YOU fancy starring in a CCTV slideshow, send in a photo (high-res if possible) of you reading one of my books here... I'll be making another reader slideshow soon, so make your pic as cute/ cool as you can and with luck it will be included!
I've been busy getting a few comps up to date too... you can see the winners of the LOST WRITING COMP here. Well done to all who entered... if you fancy testing your skills in writing stories or poetry, check out our NEW WRITING COMP too. Who knows, you could be a winner next time!
Speaking of winners, I am pleased to announce ELLA & ORLI are the winners of the My Best Friend Rocks Comp 2013! You can see some of the fantastic shortlisted entries here. Ella and Orli's family have asked for their entry not to be broadcast, but trust me it was wonderful - they are very worthy winners. I will be asking Ella and Orli to tell you more about how it feels to be the MBFR winners soon! Big congrats to the other shortlisted friends I met at the MBFR finals, too. Neve, Jessie, Isabel, Lauren, Samantha, Olivia and Ella will all be acting as FRIENDSHIP AMBASSADORS for me this year, and you'll be hearing more from them on the website soon. We have some very exciting plans in store!
If you're back at school now, enjoy - and if you have any advice for new Year Sevens/ S1s, or anyone starting a new school, share it here. Let's make September super-cool!
Lou Lou, age 14 says…
My summer has been great! I'm in Year 10 now. Scary, huh? Good luck to all Year Sevens, you'll have a great time at high school!
Libby, age 10 says…
Boohoo I only got to read like eight books over the summer hols I kept on reading cc books to the end and I only got one more cc book to go till I read every single cc book , whoop whoop but booooooo
Laoise, age 13 says…
Well done Ella and orli!!!
- Lou Lou, age 14 says…
WHERE DO YOU READ YOURS?
Have you been enjoying the sunshine? Have you been anywhere exciting? And most importantly, have you been reading any of my books?
I've been to a couple of fab festivals, including Carfest North in Cheshire which raises money for NSPCC Children in Need. My events at Carfest were cool, and I spotted old and new readers alike reading my books all around the festival site, which was brilliant! It gave me the idea to launch a PHOTO CHALLENGE - and anyone can take part!
If you were at Carfest and have a pic of you reading your CC book at the festival, send your pic to me here. If you've been to a different festival and have a pic of you there reading one of my books, send that pic in; and if you haven't made it to a festival this summer, just recreate the festival vibe and imagine you're styling a festival photo shoot - starring you, with your fave CC book! You might accessorise with a festival hat, a flower headband, a picnic blanket, a face-painted flower on the cheek or just some boho-cool clothes... get creative and channel that festival fun! If possible, get high-res pics and email them to me here.
What am I going to do with the pics? I'm planning to put them together to create a FESTIVAL themed slideshow which will appear on CCTV to remind us what a brilliant summer we've had. A little bit like this slideshow - only with added festival cool!
The vlogs from Cherry, Skye, Summer, Honey and Coco are taking a break for the summer, but that means there's a chance for YOU to get involved and liven up CCTV for me... either by taking part in the festival slideshow or by filming your OWN video review of a CC book or even getting together with friends to act out a few scenes or make your own trailer for one of my books! What are you waiting for?
Get your creative groove on, and go for it!
Laoise, age 13 says…
Wow, I can't wait to get involved!!!!!!!
Eleni, age 10 says…
You are THE best author, Cathy!
Does that mean the vlogs are still gonna carry on after the summer is over?
Esther, age 13 says…
This is so cool. BTW: Cathy, I love your books. I'll keep reading
- Laoise, age 13 says…
Wow! I have just joined twitter – and what a lovely warm welcome I've had already (I might even get a little bit addicted to this thing!!) If you have a twitter account, look me up @cathycassidyxx
To celebrate my journey into the twitterverse I’ll be joining lovely author Sarah Dessen for a live twitter chat on Sunday 30th June at 6pm (GMT). Hope to talk to you then and remember to use #PenguinChats!
If you're not on twitter don't worry - you can still get involved with my special blog tour - join me (and Sarah Dessen too) for Q&As, playlists and giveaways from Monday 24th – here's where we'll be:
Mon 24th June - www.solittletimeforbooks.blogspot.co.uk - Q&A with Sarah Dessen
Tues 25th June - www.themilelongbookshelf.blogspot.co.uk - Q&A with Cathy Cassidy
Weds 26th June - www.bookpassionforlife.blogspot.co.uk - Quickfire Q&A with Sarah Dessen
Thurs 27th June - www.chicklish.co.uk - Cathy Cassidy’s – Coco Caramel – Playlist
Fri 28th June - www.thebookaddictedgirl.blogspot.co.uk - Sarah Dessen’s – The Moon and More – Playlist
Sat 29th June - www.daisychainbookreviews.blogspot.co.uk - Giveaway – 3 winners to get Coco Caramel and The Moon and More
omni, age 12 says…
oh i dont have twitter
mimi, age 10 says…
I cant wait till the 24th!
Georgie , age 16 says…
- omni, age 12 says…
MY BEST FRIEND ROCKS 2013!!!
Its here!!! Coco Caramel is out/ published/ released into the wild... and the feedback so far is AWESOME! I'm out on tour all around the UK, meeting some amazing readers, which is very cool! And that's not all... it's time for the launch of My Best Friend Rocks 2013. Whoop!
MBFR is all about celebrating friendship, so if you have a super-cool friend and you'd like to tell her how much she means to you, this is your chance. This year we've given MBFR a twist and we're asking you to send your entries in video form! Maybe you'll tell us on camera why your friend is so brilliant; maybe she'll star in the video along with you; or maybe you'll get arty and creative and use pictures, words or even animation to create your video entry!
The finalists will be invited to a big award ceremony in London and will meet me... and the winners will get a £200 shopping spree and a full set of my books! Full details are on my COMPS page... check it out and start planning your entry now!
If you're video-crazy, check out my Trailer Comp over on the COMPS page too... and make a fab trailer or video book review for Coco Caramel - or maybe another of my books! I can't wait to see what you come up with!
For anyone who entering the Thirteenin13 comp, I've just been told the closing date is now 21st June - so you have an extra week to get your letter to the Prime Minister finished and posted! Good luck!
Better get back to my tour now... see you when I get home!!!
Gabbie the Book Girl, age 14 says…
This was one of my favourite Chocolate Box Girls books yet! I loved the plot, and the depth of the charaters and the panda hat - I bought one just like it on the day that I read the book! It was fate, and I had just the right amount of birthday money too. I highly reccomend it. I expecially like Lawrie XD : )
Read and enjoy with a hot chocolate (if you're in Australia and it's just coming into winter, that is!)
Maryann, age 12 says…
Yay!!! I'm definitely getting Coco Caramel, can't wait till Sweet Honey!
Charlotte, age 13 says…
Yay! It has finally launched! Can`t wait!
- Gabbie the Book Girl, age 14 says…
ARE YOU THIRTEEN in 2013?
I'm soooo excited to see the awesome Anne Frank Trust launch their Thirteen in 2013 campaign... and to be involved in supporting and judging it! If YOU are thirteen at any point this year, you can get involved too!
All you have to do is nip across to the Anne Frank Trust website and find out more! Seventy years before social media, a thirteen year old girl changed the way we see the world, forever. Anne Frank's dairy is one of the most widely read books in the world, and her bravery and honesty still inspire us today. Now you can have YOUR say. If you are thirteen at any point in 2013, we're inviting you to write to the Prime Minister to tell him what YOU think would make Britain a better place, and what YOU would like to change.
It's an amazing opportunity - please join in. The best letters will be answered by the Prime Minister and published in The Times... and who knows, they might just change the world, a little bit, anyway. Take a look at the Anne Frank Trust website and see how you can enter!
All sorts of good stuff is happening this week - the trailer for Coco Caramel has just gone live on CathyCassidyTV, giving us a sneak peek of Bobby playing Coco - she's FAB, just full of personality and fun, just the way I imagined Coco would be. I think you'll agree she makes the cutest little sister to CCTV actresses Toni (Honey), Sophie (Summer & Skye) and Bethany (Cherry)! Do leave a comment on the trailer to be in with a chance of winning this week's £10 New Look voucher... you might just be lucky!
I'm still unpacking after my fab trip to the Children's Reading Festival in Sharjah in the United Arab Emirates... where did all that sunshine go? Have a fantastic bank holiday weekend... and please think about sending a letter to David Cameron to tell him what YOU think about life in Britain today. Your views matter - have your say!
Eleni, age 10 says…
Hey Cathy, I watched the Coco Caramel trailer a few days ago, I adored Bobby! Sadly, I'm going to be 11 this year, so I can't get involved. Maybe I'll get involved when I'M 13?!
Keep Writing, Cathy!
Vicky, age 12 says…
I'm going to be 13 this year! Whoop whoop Sounds great btw!!!!!!!!
Love u to bits
Elizabeth, age 13 says…
Yay,I turned 13 last month! x
- Eleni, age 10 says…
Sorry for the long silence... writing this from my hotel room in Sharjah in the United Arab Emirates where I'm taking part in a book festival. I can see skyscrapers and palm trees out of my window, a fountain, and a swimming pool which looks sooo tempting. Very cool. (Well, very HOT actually, but you know what I mean...) Thanks to the fab kids from Victoria International School who listened to my slightly jet-lagged talk this morning and didn't complain when my powerpoint presentation didn't work, or at my post-flu cough. Ahem!
It's been a while since I last posted... I went to Rhodes for a week on holiday and fell in love with it... sunshine! Fab food! Lovely people! Swimming in the sea!!! Then I came back and got the flu, which was NOT so good... tissues! Lem-sip! Fever! Aches! Hacking cough! Sigh. I am much better now, but still have the cough as a souvenir...
Sooo... I am working on Sweet Honey again after a break for my holiday/flu. And it is going well... I'm being dragged into the story, which is always a good sign. I am also looking forward to my event this month at Liverpool's In Other Words Festival, and my event at the lovely Hay Festival on Tuesday 28th May (half-term week, don't panic!). This sold out fast BUT Hay have now given me a bigger venue so there are now MORE TICKETS on sale again! You can check them out here. If you can make it along, do, because I am hoping the very first copies of Coco Caramel will be on sale there... a whole week before the official release date. Don't miss out!
Then I'll be off on my official Coco Caramel tour... I shall be at Bromley, Bluewater, York, Harrogate, Southampton and Reading... and a fab event in Preston has just been confirmed too. Check the EVENTS link for all the latest details! Plus an awesome trip to Paris to meet my French readers, ooh la la! I'll tell you more when I know, and update the website EVENTS page when I can. In between the public events, I will be at schools and libraries across England... and there'll be Scottish and Irish dates later in the year, promise! (I was in Wales in March, and Hay's in Wales too, so not leaving my lovely Welsh readers out!)
Right now, I'd better get back to writing the book... might just take my laptop down to the poolside... what d'you think?
Sara, age 13 says…
Go for it!
Sara, age 13 says…
Cathy please please please come to Australia soon! So wanna meet you!
Georgie , age 16 says…
You should go to australia. Wish i went xxxxx
- Sara, age 13 says…
Coco... aka Bobby!
Finally... after the toughest decision making in any comp, ever - we can announce that the winner of our awesome 'Could You Be Coco' comp is 13 year old Bobby B from Kent! Bobby has tons of personality and confidence - plus outstanding acting skills, of course. Her cheeky grin and friendly manner helped to seal the deal... and when her first vlog goes live in a few weeks time, I think you will agree!
I want to say a HUGE well done to Bobby, and also to the other nine finalists, Katie, Lea, Emily-Indigo, Omni, Ophelia, Grace, Tilly, Mia and Siena-May. Every one of the finalists was talented, dedicated and determined, and made Coco come to life in their own unique way; each and every one of them would have made a wonderful Coco. Although there could only be one winner, we very much hope you will be seeing more of the other finalists too, if we are able to go on with CathyCassidyTV after the end of Season Three. We have all kinds of plans - and the 'Could You Be Coco' finalists had some awesome ideas for making it even better than it is now!
Although we were asking an awful lot of our entrants for this comp, we had over 200 entries, and of a very, very high standard. Around 30/40 entrants have been 'highly commended' and extracts from their audition reels will be shown on CCTV in a few weeks time, as we felt they should have a little of the limelight too. Puffin have now replied to everyone, so if you haven't had an email your message may have bounced back to us - a few of our emails kept pinging back, but we HAVE tried our hardest to contact everyone. If you haven't heard, then apologies - cyberspace is conspiring against us! To EVERYONE who entered, well done - the Puffin team and I were totally bowled over by the quality and talent of your auditions. I always knew I had the best readers ever, and this has proved it yet again!
If you missed out this time, don't panic - there will be more video challenges coming up, so keep a look out! If you're not into acting, don't worry either - our annual My Best Friend Rocks comp will be launching in June, and that could be YOUR chance!
And if you can't wait until then, well nip over to CathyCassidyTV and leave a comment on our behind-the-scenes clip 'Get Skye's Style' before Tuesday 9th... you could win not just the usual £10 New Look voucher but also the gorgeous, vintage-style necklace Skye is wearing in the video. Cool!
Eleni, age 10 says…
Omg! I cannot wait to see cocos vlogs. Good luck to Bobby! :D
Ruth, age 8 says…
oh my dais are u kidding cos i totally 4 got about the compettiton i hope it comes out this week or next ur the best cathy
Wow, well done Bobby for winning the competition, to all the finalists! I can't wait to watch Coco's first video! :D xxx
- Eleni, age 10 says…
GET SKYE'S LOOK...
If you're loving the CathyCassidyTV clips so far (and I think you are, 'cos we now have over 1000 subscribers!) you will love this week's episode. Would YOU like to get Skye's look? Take a behind-the-scenes peek at CCTV and watch our awesome stylist and hair/make-up artist for CCTV talk you through it all!
You can learn how to make a fish-tail plait and how to choose cool, vintage-style fashions as well as watch how Skye's natural-style make-up is done. Watch it here - it's like a magazine, come to life! I hope you like it - and if you do, make SURE you leave a comment because THIS WEEK one lucky reader who comments will be picked to win not just the usual £10 New Look voucher but the gorgeous vintage-style NECKLACE Skye is wearing in the clip! (Well, you did say you liked comps - don't say we're not good to you!)
As I said, we have over 1000 subscribers so far for CCTV... if you haven't subscribed yet, it's worth doing because every month we pick one lucky subscriber to win a whole set of Cathy Cassidy books.
Meanwhile - SO EXCITING!!! - the team of judges at Puffin HQ have been busy drawing up the shortlist for the Could You Be Coco comp! The ten finalists have now been informed, and Puffin will contact the other entrants shortly... so if you haven't heard yet, you should do soon, one way or another. We hope to showcase a 'Best of the Rest' of the entries too, with forty 'highly commended' clips, because according to Puffin the standard is VERY high indeed! I can't wait to see them, as well as meeting the ten shortlisted readers at the audition-day on Thursday... I haven't chosen the shortlist, but I will help to judge the overall winner. SOOOO excited!
I'll blog again after Thursday to tell you how the 'finals' go...
Don't forget to nip over to CCTV and take a look at Skye's styling video... and tell me what you think! Speak soon...
Deborah, age 13 says…
Good luck to all the Coco contestants! I love the Skye video and I definitely wear that look as much as I can!!!
Abbey, age 12 says…
Oh wow I can't wait!! I'm a vintage geek!! Everything I've got is vintage (almost!!) I love Skyes style!! xxooxx
Sharon, age 12 says…
That is so exciting! i am definitely watching that clip now!
- Deborah, age 13 says…
COMPS ARE COOL!
It's all go at Puffin HQ this week as the team sift through the FANTABULOUS entries for the Could You Be Coco competition... drawing up a shortlist of ten is NOT going to be easy! Once the finalists have been selected and informed, I'll be getting involved too, helping the team to pick our wonderful winner. SOOOO excited!
That winner will be starring as Coco in her very own episodes of CathyCassidyTV very soon... how cool? I love that you are all enjoying CCTV so much, btw... have you seen the brand new v-log from Summer this week? It tells you just what happened behind the scenes at Summer & Skye's joint 13th birthday party, when Skye got lost in the snow. You can watch it here - and remember to comment to be in with a chance of winning this week's £10 New Look voucher.
I love doing lots of comps, freebies and giveaways both on the website and on my Facebook Fanpage... but not everyone approves. Last week I had an upsetting message from a reader who feels I should stop doing comps because 'people would only be disappointed,' and advising me to find a professional actress for Coco. I couldn't reply, as the reader didn't give me her name or email. :o(
If she is reading, I'd like her to know I genuinely think one of my cool and talented readers will be perfect for the role of Coco. If none of us took risks, entered comps or went all-out to try to make our dreams happen, surely the world would be a sadder, duller, less hopeful place? If I hadn't tried to make MY dream happen, there'd be no CC books, f'r'instance. And sure, not everybody can win every comp, but the way I see it is that you can have fun trying and learn along the way that it's the TAKING PART that counts, not the end result.
I guess the answer is that nobody HAS to enter a comp if they don't want to, but what do YOU reckon? Should I keep on doing comps? (I need to know because the annual My Best Friend Rocks comp is looming in the summer!) Tell me what you think...
Holly, age 12 says…
I really enjoy doing comps and I don't think you should stop doing comps because lots of other people loving doing them !x I'd be really disappointed if you did :( I didn't enter the coco competition cuz I don't live near London.
Anyways I can't wait for the MBFR competition (please still have it)
Rowan, age 12 says…
Hey... ANYONE who has read it FANTABULIOUS books would know that we enter for the fun and joy of it! As Holly said I WOULD be disappointed if you cancelled the comps! We LIKE them and no-one can say or do anything to change our minds!
Mia , age 12 says…
I love your competitions, and really enjoy taking part in them! :D Please keep on having them!
I have entered the Coco competition, and can't wait for the results. Good luck to everyone who has entered!! xxxx
- Holly, age 12 says…