The seven lucky winners of the 2010 Spook’s Apprentice Competition met Joseph yesterday for a Spooky walk around Manchester. Watch this space for pictures and video from the event, but in the meantime, here are some highlights from the winning entries…
Leo, age 10
Just like in the Books, I have been keeping a notebook and writing down everything about the dark in it. Recently I finished writing a novel, 31 000 words long.
Extract from “The Rowan Tree”
Lenny ran back to the golem, and sat on it’s back. He whispered into it’s ear. “ go to Svalig’s tower!” the brown creature hissed, and ran towards the silhouette against the sky. It was black, and it was as if it had grown since Lenny had last seen it.
There was a humanoid silhouette on top of it, about six feet tall, with two ram like horns curling from it. It raised it’s hands, and two fireballs shot toward Lenny. He picked up an abandoned crossbow and fired a shower of bolts at the fireballs, shooting them away into the sky.
Calvin, age 14
I think the books are so great that I contacted Joseph’s publisher and arranged for him to come to my school, and I can’t wait! I have put posters up around my school and to get people reading the spooks and lots of people are now reading them and if i was picked I would get even more people to read them.
Joseph Delaney is an inspiration to me and got me trying to write my own books. I am currently working on ‘Warlocks’ and ‘The Draconis Madstone’.
I made a costume of Tom a while ago but it doesn’t fit me any more so I sent a picture of my sister with it on and I made a witch costume and I have sent that as well.
If I was picked I would make my whole room about spooks and put up drawings and posters up all over my room (I am doing computer graphics at school for GCSE so I think they will be really good). As a huge commitment to the spooks books and I got through I would try and learn Greek to get a greater feel of Toms experiences.
I left the house approximately at 7:40 in the morning, as I do everyday.
The sun was peering over the horizon, the blue sky breaking through the silver clouds and the sound of precious birds singing their
songs like there is no tomorrow.
It certainly was enough to lighten your day.
As the time came I reached my school to experience a warm sense, not only in my stomach, but my mind too.
I knew that day something marvellous and amazing would happen to me.
So the day began with my first lesson, English.
I strode through the room to find out that it wasn’t going to be an ordinary lesson, it was definately going to be different.
Do you know why that day was so amazing?
It was the day I discovered my favourite authors first of many books, the spooks apprentice.
I flicked to the where the story began, since then it has changed my life.
Now I have read all of the seven books including the spooks witches.
Once I start to read them I can never put them down, they are like a part of me, whenever I read them I wish that I could be there to share the adventure with them.
They never leave my mind, they are some of the greatest things that have ever happened to me.
Raven, age 11
I think I should be the Spook’s Apprentice because I have been following the books since they first came out and have loved them ever since! I recommend them to all my friends and teachers and I convinced my school librarian to move the series to a more prominent position so more people could find it. I have persuaded several friends to go out and buy the books. I have re-read the books at least 10 times (at least 20 times for The Spook’s Apprentice) and have been to see the play and to 2 book signings. I especially enjoyed the signing in Lancaster last summer, although this was partly because of the castle and the food festival which had delicious hog roasts. I also went to a book signing in Preston so if I don’t win based on my idea, I think I should because of the petrol considering that I live in Blackpool :P.
After reading the Spook books I was inspired to make a video which I made with my friend Chloe and my mum and you can watch it here.
If I won I would organise spooky walks around Lancashire to visit the places in the books and learn more about the real spooky history of the area. I would arrange the spooky walks around Halloween, in the half term holiday, and everyone should come in fancy dress. At the end of the walk someone could read a scary section from the book in candle light and there could be toffee apples so that everyone was happy, apart from the diabetics.
Thank you for taking the time to read this.
Mark age 11
My name is Mark, I am 11 years old and I live in Northern Ireland. I am a keen reader of the Spooks series and was introduced to Spooks by my friend Anna who had brought the Spooks Apprentice on holidays with her. The illustrations and the blurb drew me in and right then I knew it was my type of book.
The reason I feel I should be The Spooks Apprentice is because I love everything about Spooks, I am a Spookaholic! I have read every single Spooks book in the series and the two extra books. Last Halloween I dressed up as Tom and the one before that I went as the Spook. I am very proud of the fact that I have also been responsible for introducing Spooks to many of my friends in school and out of school. They have become popular in my year group because of my love of not only the books but also my love of spreading the word of Spooks. I can’t wait until the Spooks movie comes out as well as the next book in the series. If I were chosen as the Spooks Apprentice I would try even harder to spread the word of Spooks, in fact I would make it my own job. So far I have made my whole class aware of Spooks and have loaned my classmates my treasured copies of Spooks unsurprisingly they love them. As part of my work in school I have completed three book reports involving Spooks books….”Spooks Witches, Spooks Sacrifice and my most recent Spooks Nightmare”. I have had to research Joseph Delaney who is the author (but you knew that). I have also researched David Wyatt the illustrator. I also completed three detailed character studies on Tom, Alice and the Spook. I have used the Spooks website to help me with my research and have continued to browse it to find out any updates on Spooks.
Thank you for taking the time to read my letter, winning this competition would mean the world to me.
Jack, age 12
I would love to be one of your spooks apprentices, because like Tom I’m very inquisitive, love history, have a wild imagination and like to help people. I am strong, faithful, clever and I will devote my life to the country.
To be a spooks apprentice would be like a modern day community support officer today. Like Tom, you would be getting reports from all over your local area and country what was happing. Where Tom got rid of Bogart’s and witches, today I would get rid of all the bad people and try to make it a safer place to live in.
Qualities that I have are that I listen to people and instructions; I can lead and be forceful when I want to be and be quiet and confidential when I need to be. If I was Tom in his day, I would spread the word by holding village meetings with all the locals and warning them about the dangers of the witches and Bogart’s. I would also put posters up all over the village and surrounding towns.
I think if it meant walking hundreds of miles to pass the word around and be rid of the Bogart’s and witches it would be worth it. Reading about the witches has made me more interested in where they originated from. They had a terrible time, being burned at stake and drowning on ducking stools. It makes me sad to think that just because old women picked different flowers and plants around the country side they were classed as witches. When all they were doing was trying to make some sort of herbal medicines. They were persecuted and hunted down just for telling people they were going to put a spells on them. All of this could just have been myths and poor innocent people where killed because of it.
George, age 14
I am your everyday fourteen year old boy who loves to read Spook’s. Since my friend mentioned them I’ve been hooked like a fish. Every time a new Spook’s story get’s released, I beg and nag my mum to take me to purchase the gripping book. When she finally agrees to drag me to the shop, she is actually relieved. This is because I have my head buried in great fiction for weeks, but it only lasts until I want the next one. So you could say I am a HUGE fan.
During my time at home and at school I really enjoy art. The Spook’s books have inspired me to draw scenes, front covers and characters from the series. If it wasn’t for the books I don’t think I would have been accepted into art GCSE for next year. Because of the author’s great writing skill, I have been able to draw from my imagination; however, living where I live in the county (Lancashire), I am able to draw from reality as well as drawing from Joseph Delaney’s immense writing skill. I have displayed one of my pictures at the bottom of the page.
Have you ever heard the expression boys are ‘reluctant readers’? . Luckily, I’m not; I love reading but I know lot’s of friends who don’t. My Idea was to make my friends read Spook’s, because they are so gripping I think that they would enjoy and improve at reading.
Previously, I have been working on some clay models. My Dad got me some modeling clay which I love. Being such a big fan of Spook’s I have started making models of Spook’s characters. My Dad enjoys playing chess and so do I; I thought that I would make a chess set using my modeling clay. All of the pieces will be characters from the books.
OVERSEAS WINNER: Rafe, age 12
Hello, my name is Rafe and I’m twelve years old. I have always loved the strange and fantastical. When I first heard about the spooks apprentice I thought it would just be another book. I wasn’t quite expecting the book to become a full on obsession. I would read it with a flashlight hours after my parents were asleep. I would sneak it into class and read it during math. The book consumed my life for a few days. I quickly told all my friends but alas, no one seemed interested. I pestered and ranted and frankly wouldn’t talk about anything else until my friends finally started to read it.
Ever since I started reading The Wardstone Chronicles have inspired me and the artwork I create. I doodle little lamias or ghosts in class, make acrylic paintings of different scenes and people, and try to sculpt a worme or any other creature from the series whenever I get my hands on a lump of clay.
I have sent two pieces of my artwork inspired by the series. The first is what I thought Golgoth might look like if he were to take human form. He resonates such an aura of cold that icicles form on his face and beard. The second is a sculpture of a malevolant witch’s face on a bust of a head.