Hello there. My name is Stephen Davies and I am an author. I am currently writing a series of Hilda books (ages 7-11), based on Luke Pearson’s wonderful graphic novels. One is already out and plenty more are on their way. You can even watch Hilda’s adventures on Netflix.
Also in the pipeline is my new young adult novel CHESSBOXER (ages 12+). It is due in October 2019 (published by Andersen Press) and is a darkly funny story about a snarky and rebellious chess prodigy called Leah Baxter. Writing it took me four years on and off. I absolutely love the characters and I hope you will, too. Oh, and don’t worry, you don’t have to like chess to get into this book.
At primary school I enjoyed funny books like Brer Rabbit, The Twits and the Just William series. I read the same books over and over and loved them literally to bits. In secondary school I chose mostly thrillers and whodunnits: books by Agatha Christie, Alistair Maclean and Arthur Conan Doyle. In my late teens I discovered Coleridge, Hemingway and a raft of other wonderful writers too numerous to mention. I fell in love with words and ideas, and began to read voraciously. I started to write, too, filling whole exercise books with inelegant haiku and wildly improbable stories.
I have had a few different jobs over the years: apple picker, rice farmer, English teacher and radio producer. Through all those seasons of life, I continued to read and write. Some of my writing appeared in poetry journals and newspaper travel supplements. My first children’s book, Sophie and the Albino Camel, was published by Andersen Press and won the Glen Dimplex award for children’s fiction.
Since the Sophie series came out, I have written many more books for young people. The inspiration for many of these books was my thirteen years in West Africa. You will notice that lots of my books are set in Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger, on the southern edge of the Sahara Desert. ‘Write what you know’ is generally good advice, and it has served me well.
In July 2014 I moved back to London with my wife Charlie Davies and our two daughters. One upside of being back in England is that I get to visit lots of schools and encourage young people in their own story writing. Most of my school visits are organized through Authors Abroad, including my popular Able Writers Days. However, feel free to arrange a school visit directly if you so wish.
Aside from reading and writing, I have a great love of Chinese ink painting and chess. Oh, and I’m very tall – 6 foot 6 – so don’t be too shocked by that if I visit your school!
Hope you enjoy browsing this site.
For Press: you can download high-res portrait photos by clicking on the thumbnails below: