The Soterion Mission by Stewart Ross: an editor’s perspective

By Vaarunika Dharmapala

When I think about editing a new manuscript, I picture a very tiny me getting tangled up in super-sized black type. Hanging off the tail of a “g” perhaps, peering about, trying to see between the looming words into the mind of a virtual stranger, the author.

Stewart Ross is no longer a stranger to me. We’ve had many conversations, as many laughs and have become just a little more familiar with each other’s thoughts. I’ve spent hours rambling amongst his words, and have emerged from the process with a head full of new ideas, places and people. I’ve become his biggest fan and most eager advocate.

The Soterion Mission is set in a harsh future world, where the inhabitants must cram all of life’s experiences into less than nineteen years. After their eighteenth ‘winter’ they age rapidly, then die. But it is not a wholly bleak world. There is hope – in the form of the mysterious Soterion that holds the key to life, learning and death.

One of the most interesting aspects of this novel is the way in which Stewart has chosen to give the experience of young people all the validity of adulthood. In this view, adolescence is not a waiting room in which we bide our time until real life begins. Within those short years, we already encounter the best and worst in human nature. We have our hearts broken and mended, we are betrayed and rescued, we are fearful and brave. Many of us are lucky enough to experience these extremes in the relative safety of home and school. The characters in this novel, however, are fighting for their lives.

From kind and clever Roxanne to fiendish Timur to anarchic young Sammy – Stewart’s characters leapt into life as I read and re-read. They forced their way out from between the big black type and straight into my head. In fact, they refuse to leave! I know that any reader who picks up this book will feel the same way. That is why I am pleased and proud, as is Curious Fox, to publish this outstanding new novel.

Vaarunika Dharmapala

The Fox Prepares for a party!

We’re very excited in the Curious Fox office this week as we’re sending out invitations for our launch party!

We’re planning a little shindig in mid Janaury (yes, yes, we know – who holds a party in January?! But we’re planning on brightening up a depressing month and standing out from the crowd is what we’re all about after all!). We’re holding the launch at Dr Johnson’s house which is obviously very appropriate as the primary lexicographer of the english language (his Dictionary of the English Language was published in 1755).

It’s going to be an event for our trade contacts, so that’s booksellers, librarians, reviewers, book bloggers and of course our dear authors and agents. It’s a chance for us to tell people what the ethos is behind Curious Fox, why we’re so excited to present our books to the world and how we hope to make the list a huge success. We’re also planning some brilliant ‘curiosity’ games to keep our guests guessing and spark that curiosity in us all. We’ll take lots of photos on the night so watch this space for a report, and, if an invitation lands on your desk this week, we look forward to seeing you soon.

 

Georgia Lawe joins the Curious Fox team!

We are delighted to announce that Georgia Lawe will be joining the Curious Fox team on a freelance basis!

Georgia will be working on the publicity campaign for Curious Fox and is already busy preparing for the launch event taking place this January!  Georgia will also be heavily involved in promoting the Curious Fox launch titles, The Diamond Thief by Sharon Gosling and Hyperspace High by Zac Harrison, as well as generating lots of media coverage promoting the Curious Fox imprint at author events and literary festivals.

Georgia has over 12 years’ experience in children’s books publicity, having worked with publishing houses like Scholastic and Random House. She has worked with some of the biggest names in the industry and on major brands including Thomas the Tank Engine!

We are very excited to have Georgia on board. If you have any publicity questions or interested in anything else please do get in touch!

laurab@curious-fox.com

Follow the fox! @curiousfoxbooks

Welcome!

I am delighted to introduce the new blog from Curious Fox. Here you will find a number of regular updates from our team in the build-up to our launch party, through to when our books are published and beyond!

Our mission is to publish imaginative, creative and jaw droppingly enjoyable books that will take children on a journey through new adventures and experiences. The titles in our debut list will do just that – transporting readers from an urban farm to an interstellar school from Victorian London to a dystopian future.

At Curious Fox we’re inspired by the inquisitive nature of our namesake, and we want to publish for the children who ask questions. What would happen if shadows came to life? What would school be like if your classmates were aliens? What would it be like to live in a Mall?

Miles

Managing Director