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PAM ROYDS 1924 - 2016

Pam Royds on Grasmere , 1971 with Sally Christie, children’s author and daughter of Philippa Pearce. I was just twenty two when I fir...

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United Kingdom
My blog is about writing and illustrating children's books which I have been doing since 1974. www.gillianmcclure.com has all my books. I also have another blog: www.paulcoltman.blogspot.com where I publish my father's poems.

Tuesday, 29 June 2010


This is the first Selkie cover published by Doubleday. It was supposed to have the title in rainbow-coloured foil (which doesn't come out here in the scan). Unfortunately, the printers got it wrong and used gold instead.

I'd come up with some other cover designs but my editor and designer, influenced I think by the success of the Rainbow Fish, wanted a large seal head with eyes that followed you round the bookshop. They kept making me do the head larger and larger. Interestingly, in his review, Quentin Blake didn't like the rainbow- coloured foil on the first Selkie cover . This is what he says: 'A gleaming seal's head, alert with life, dominates the book's cover. It is on the cover also where there is the only discordant note: the single word title in a silver ribbon-like lettering which, though no doubt kindly meant on the part of the publisher, would seem to have more to do with chocolates  or silk stockings and which doesn't at all suggest the intensity of this curious book.' 

My American publisher Farrar Strauss & Giroux didn't want the UK cover design and asked me to paint another one reflecting the atmosphere of the story.  I used the American cover design for the Plaister Press edition.
    Now I'm working on my new book and I'm faced with the dilemma of how much to give away on the cover.

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