Monday 5 September 2016

The World according to Robyn Silver

by Paula Harrison

Dear Slushpile readers, I had a book published last Thursday called Robyn Silver: The Midnight Chimes and I'm more excited than a child who's eaten too much sugar.

A whole box of Robyn Silvers from Scholastic!

I'm particularly excited because this is my VERY FIRST book written in the 1st person. (this is the sort of thing that excites writers, you know). I'm also thrilled that this is my VERY FIRST book with Scholastic. Look out for the big advert they've taken out in First News to promote the book and the competition they're running to win an iPod and £150 of books for your school by inventing your own very scary monster.

The book has a Monster Compendium in the back illustrated by the very talented Renee Kurilla who created the fabulous cover and all the inside artwork, so children entering the competition have some great inspiration right there!

The competition advert in First News

I did a book signing this weekend and already I've been asked that old chestnut of a question:

Why did you write this book?

Well, I love fantasy and adventure. Robyn Silver: The Midnight Chimes is all about a girl from a big family who doesn't believe she has any particular talents or skills. But when she starts seeing monsters that no one else can see she finds out that she's brilliant at sword-fighting and has tonnes of grit and determination.

More than anything it was Robyn's voice inside my head that made me write this book and that remained true from beginning to end of a long re-writing and editing process. So here I give you Robyn in her own words:

 Robyn on her family:

Having so many brothers and sisters basically sucks. What sucks even more is being number three out of the five of us - being smack in the middle, like the meat in a sandwich. The older ones - Sammie and Ben - get to do cool stuff that I'm not allowed to, like go to the teen roller-blading night at the sports centre. The younger ones - Josh and Annie - are totally spoilt.

I just get moaned at by everybody, AND I have to share a room with Annie because we're the two youngest girls (even though I'm eleven and she's six).

Robyn trying to do the right thing despite being provoked by the most annoying boy in her class:

The kobold on the ceiling gave a menacing growl. Hector stood underneath, completely oblivious. "Robyn, get out of here! I don't need your help."

I bit my lip. I was so tempted to let the kobold bite Hector. It wouldn't kill him after all. I sighed. I had to be good. I had a sacred duty - or whatever Cryptorum would've said.

Robyn finding out she can also see wishes:

The bubble things were wishes and I could now see them just like I could see the weird creatures...

I tucked Annie in and turned the lamp off before going back to bed. Once my eyes got used to the dark I could see the last few wishes gleaming faintly as they turned in the air. It was strange to see them but also kind of comforting. I knew the creatures might still be there, outside the window, but in here we had our wishes. Something nice in this new freaky world of mine.

Things don't stay simple for long though, as Robyn finds out. Be careful what you wish for...

Find out more about Robyn Silver: The Midnight Chimes at

Find out more about Paula Harrison's books at


  1. Huge congratulations on your new book, Paula! I laughed out loud when Robyn was tempted to let the kobold bite Hector. Looking forward to your book launch!

  2. What a fab and fun idea - and hey, sword fighting! Cool!

  3. Love the cover. Writing in the first person is great. I think with children in particular it really helps immerse them in the story

  4. Congratulations Paula! So many middle children who can identify with Robyn!


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