Syd Goes to Platypus Rock Post 44
Syd Goes to Platypus Rock (2000) is one of nine titles I did about the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games mascots; Syd the platypus, Millie the echidna and Olly the kookaburra. I wrote these by commission, and had to follow quite tight guidelines. Each story had to focus on one of the mascots. The mascots had to be shown in a good light, and had to be actively helpful as part of the Australian team's cheer and coaching squad. They were magical beings, in that they could go where needed and communicate with anyone, but they had no actual magic.
Every time I mentioned the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games I had to write it in full. I couldn't mention any athlete by name or description. The mascots could all show faults, but not bad faults, and they had to work to overcome them and, in doing so, help athletes and associated people with any problems.
Keeping all this straight in my head was interesting, but the commissioning publisher and the committee gave me a lot of support and answered questions.
This particular title sees Syd needing a bit of quiet time because he's been over-training. He goes off to Platypus Rock, which is one of his special places. So, why rocks? Well, the illustrator, who had rules to follow as well, asked me politely to have the mascots standing on something if they needed to talk to a human. Otherwise, all he could easily show was ankles. I asked him if there was anything he really loved to draw. "Rocks!" he said with relish. I promised him a book with Rocks. This was it.
Although these stories were written specifically for the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games, I believe they're still kicking about in school libraries, and get an airing whenever the Olympic Games swings by.
About the Blog
Sally is Sally Odgers; author, manuscript assessor, editor, anthologist and reader. (Sally is me, by the way, and I am lots of other things too, but these are the relevant ones for now.)
The goal for 2017 is to write a post a day profiling the background behind one of my books; how it came to be written, what it's about, and any things of note that happened along the way. If you're an author, an aspiring author, a reader or just someone who enjoys windows into worlds, you might find this fun. This preamble will be pasted to the top of each post, so feel free to skip it in future.
The books are not in any special order, but will be assigned approximate dates, and pictures, where they exist.