Simon Cheshire
Simon Cheshire

All About Simon Cheshire

Simon Cheshire is an established children’s writer who has been visiting schools, libraries and literary festivals for well over a decade. He’s the author of many bestsellers for older children, including the Saxby Smart detective stories, the award winning thriller “Deadline” and titles such as “They Melted His Brain!” and “Totally Unsuitable For Children.” Simon Cheshire has done promotional book tours around various parts of the UK and America, he’s written and presented a number of radio programmes, but he has yet to achieve his ambition of going to the Moon!

Simon Cheshire was a dedicated reader from a very young age and started writing stories when he was in his teens. After he turned thirty and finally accepted he’d always have the mind of a ten-year-old, he began creating children’s stories and at last found his natural habitat. Since his first book appeared in 1997, his work has been published in various countries and languages around the world. He writes in a tiny room crammed with books, letters from readers and empty chocolate bar wrappers.

He’s written for a broad spectrum of ages, but the majority of his books are what he calls “action-packed comedies” for 8-12 years. He lives in Warwick with his wife and children, but spends most of his time in a world of his own.

Simon’s School Visits

What year groups does he work with?
• Mainly KS2, but also KS3 and KS4.

What types of group does he work with?
• Groups of any size, from single classes to whole school assemblies.

What might a typical visit include?

For KS2…
• An assembly for all KS2, followed by
• Some individual class sessions if required, plus
• A book signing session

For KS3/4…
• A series of talks to individual classes or year groups, plus
• A book signing session

For all visits…
• Simon will spend as long at the school as required, or as time permits. Depending on distance travelled (he’s based in Warwick), this should usually mean at least a full afternoon, or a full school day if travel schedules make this possible.

What do his sessions consist of?

Simon will gladly talk on almost any book-related topic you choose, but has a few ‘off the peg’ sessions, each of which lasts 45 minutes – 1 hour…

For KS2: “Stories and How I Write Them.” A light-hearted, interactive talk, suitable for assemblies and larger groups, covering the basics of how pupils can plan a story, as well as a guide to the work of a writer, followed by a short Q&A.
For KS2: “Writing Chapter One.” This is aimed at single classes/year groups. Simon and the class write the first part of a story together, based entirely on pupils’ suggestions and ideas. Pupils can then finish the story themselves at a later date, either individually or as a class exercise.
For KS2 and KS3: “Detective Stories – How To Write Them & Where They Came From.” This is a guide to the themes and plot devices of the genre and to the writers who created detective fiction in the first place.
For KS2, KS3 and KS4: “Story Mechanics.” This takes stories apart, looks at how they work and puts them back together again as a way to help pupils understand how fiction is constructed. (Content is adaptable for different age groups – for younger groups, the emphasis is on ideas such as the ‘Seven Basic Plots’, while for older groups there’s information about things such as movie scriptwriting).

What is the overall aim of the visit and what will pupils get out of it?
• Simon’s aim is to communicate an infectious enthusiasm for reading and writing in all forms and to present pupils with practical ideas and suggestions to help them think about their own approach to literacy topics.

What materials/facilities does he need?
• Only a flipchart, or similar

How will he back up the visit?
• The school will receive a personalised A4 flyer from Simon, to distribute to all relevant pupils/ parents, giving details of the visit.
• Simon will place a personalised ‘looking forward to meeting you’ message for the school on the home page of his website.

Simon’s Books

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Poisoned Arrow
What kind of dirty tricks are being played at the local theatre? Why would someone take the blame for a crime they couldn’t have committed? And how do the top team in the school quiz seem to know the answers before they hear the questions? Solve three more mind-mangling mysteries, brought to you by Saxby Smart, schoolboy private detective. Saxby reveals the clues that solve the cases, but are you smart enough to work out them out for yourself?

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Deadline
When Sam and Karen’s mum is dragged away by heavily armed police, their whole lives change. With no clues apart from a cryptic message screamed out as she leaves, the kids suddenly find themselves embroiled in a high-adrenalin race against time to stop a bomb blowing up Westminster Bridge. Chased by terrorists at every turn, Sam and Karen need to use all their ingenuity to survive, rescue their mum, and stop this terrible crime! Fast, furious and gripping, this is a page-turner that will hook the most reluctant reader

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Airlock
George and his friends have won an incredible prize, the chance to visit the Berners-Lee space station for a special overnight school trip. But after less than an hour in space, a devastating explosion rips through the orbiting platform, killing most of the crew and leaking almost all of the station’s air supply into space. All the evidence suggests deliberate sabotage, which means the terrorist must still be on board. But who can it be? With time running out and little hope of a rescue, can George and his friends stop the saboteur, save the space station and survive?

Reviews & Recommendations

“Simon gave a wonderful assembly, it was funny, the children enjoyed it and he gave some great ideas to help with their literacy” – Deanery Primary School, West Midlands

“Everyone at the school felt [your visit] was a huge success and was thoroughly enjoyed by everyone, children and adults! The talks you gave were fun, interesting and inspiring. Year 6 left with a new found love of reading and the children who bought your books could not put them down!” – Wallisdean Junior School, Hampshire

 Some book reviews:
“Simon Cheshire writes comedy mysteries better than anyone. Young readers will love this: there are thrills and humour throughout and good mental exercise as well” – Carousel (on the Saxby Smart books)

“This book is like the new cooler version of Sherlock Holmes… If you want to get some proper detective stories please read the Saxby Smart private detective series” – The Guardian

“I wish this book would be bought in its thousands by schools and that all pupils should have to read it… It’s a book which celebrates the empowering freedom of the word and the right to expression” – Indie Book Review (on You’ve Got To Read This)

“Reminiscent of The Hitch-Hiker’s Guide To The Galaxy. It positively bubbles with jokes” – The Independent On Sunday (on Totally Unsuitable For Children)

To Make a Booking

To make an enquiry about Simon Cheshire, or any of the other authors, poets & illustrators listed on this website, please phone Trevor Wilson on +44 (0) 1535 656015, or email him at trevor@caboodlebooks.co.uk

Further information on Simon Cheshire is available from his website: http://www.simoncheshire.co.uk