World Famous Author Writing New Book Set In Scilly

michael morpurgo porthcressa library_2
World famous children’s writer Michael Morpurgo has revealed that he’s writing a new book set in Scilly.

He wasn’t giving too much away about the story, which is about the uninhabited island of St Helens, only to say it’s set during the First World War and is connected to the sea and America.

He said it was an extraordinary story to come across and he’s returning to the islands in September to continue with the book.

Michael says he works better when he’s close to the landscape he’s writing about.

Mr Morpugo, a regular visitor to Bryher, made a special appearance at the new Porthcressa Library yesterday. He read extracts from his book ‘The Wreck of the Zanzibar’ set in Scilly, to a specially invited audience of youngsters.

He also quoted from his adaptation of the traditional story of The Pied Piper of Hamlyn, something that’s topical with the rat eradication project starting on St Agnes.

Michael described the new library as ‘extraordinary’, adding that it has a ‘peaceful feel’ to it.

And he says it will be a wonderful facility for the islands children to grow up with.

He feels that libraries are still important, even in these days when literature can be found online and downloaded to eBooks, because they’re used by children and old people, the two groups who can least afford the new technologies.

The success of Michael Morpurgo’s works, which have been adapted into films and stage plays, such as Why the Whales Came, Private Peaceful and, most famously, War Horse, have propelled him onto the international stage, working with directors such as Steven Spielberg.

But he says he never intends to write books in the hope that they’ll become films, because that’s too much of a compromise and ruins the authenticity of the story.

But he is aware of the effect that an adaptation can have on the place it’s set in.

He says people often come to Scilly to see the places described in his books but he always hopes that they won’t spoil those settings.

Spielberg famously said while filming Warhorse that Dartmoor was one of the most beautiful places he’d been too. Michael says he hasn’t visited Scilly yet, but he’s working on it.