Hi Summer Reading Clubbers,
‘Shiver me sunburn, it’s hot!’
If you are in a cold part of the country, please ignore the above comment. It’s just something Hook Hand Horace would say.
I’m often asked who my favourite character is. It’s hard to choose. It’s like trying to pick my favourite ice cream flavour from a shop with 100 varieties!
I’ll answer this question instead: Which character do you write about the most? The answer is simple – Hook Hand Horace. Horace features in two of my Stroogle picture books, six Pie Rats novels, two drawing books and four Scallywags books (and there are more Scallywags books on the way)!
‘He sounds like a popular guy,’ I hear you say.
Truth be told, Horace is a bit of a nuisance. He’s the silly side kick who gets all the dodgy lines. He’s the pint-sized Pie Rat with an enormous appetite and absolutely no common sense. He’s the comic relief. And that’s what makes him so great. If a scene is too serious, or a conversation needs a change in direction, I introduce Horace. If I think something could confuse the reader, I get Horace to ask what it means. He’s my go-to guy!
Here are some of Horace’s favourite things to say. The underlined words can be replaced with almost anything:
‘Rotten pies to homework!’
‘Putrid pastries to detention!’
‘Shiver me britches!’
‘What the flaming rat’s tail is going on?’
‘What in Blacktail’s name were you thinking?’
The other cool thing about Horace is that he has a golden hook hand. It is a wonderful visual prop. Horace doesn’t just say things. He says things as he is sweeping his hook dramatically through the air, or poking himself in the nose!
In homage to Horace, I thought we could have a competition.
For your chance to win a signed copy of Scallywags and the Troublesome Treasure (featuring the very silly Hook Hand Horace), come up with something clever and catchy a curious creature would say. Hint: try to think up a new character. What makes them interesting? You can type your entry in the comments section below. You have until Jan 31 to enter.
- Curious Creature Profile: Hook Hand Horace
- Animal: Rat.
- Future Pirate Crew: Pie Rats.
- Strengths: Funny in a dorky kind of way. A great shot with a cannon.
- Weaknesses: Obsessed with pies. Speaks without thinking. Talks non-stop!
- Likes: Pies, pies and more pies!
- Distinguishing features: Is extremely short (even for a rat). Has a shiny hook hand. Has scars on each cheek.
- Favourite saying: ‘Rotten pies to …’
You can learn to draw Horace in his superhero outfit below.
I’ll catch you later, Summer Reading Clubbers,