We’re thrilled to welcome Mairi Holden as our guest blogger. Mairi is Oscar Holden’s mum – you’ll remember that 11-year-old Oscar recently published his first fantastic book about his character Fazoom. Here, Mairi recalls Oscar starting to create characters age six, and how his first book was published.
Oscar created the characters in his book Fazoom and Zen at around age six. He has always had a love of reading, particularly The Beano, The Dandy and Superhero stories.
He started by drawing the characters and putting them into comic style, he would doodle and make stories about them – Fazoom the Superhero coming to the rescue to sort out the problems caused by Zen!
I was fascinated by his imagination, way of thinking, creativity, and sense of humour at such a young age.
It was his six-year-old dream to make stories and give them to his friends to enjoy. He would staple the pages together and ask me if he could take them to school because he really wanted other children to enjoy his work. His teacher gave him a separate doodling jotter, so he had a focused area to draw and create – as the characters were turning up on his other work!
I always wanted Oscar to know that he could turn his dreams into reality, to never give up, and to know anything is possible.
Fazoom’s very first appearance was in the Reading Force journal for teens and tweens, which was created during lockdown with the help of the Army Welfare Service Book Club members – Oscar being one of them. They asked for some doodles and art from the children, and of course Oscar included Fazoom!
I then came across a way to have books printed and published on Amazon and found the fabulous illustrator Becky Wain. In a call with her Oscar described the personalities of Fazoom and Zen, spoke to her about his vision, we gave her his drawings and story – and she worked her magic! We couldn’t have done it without her, we were so lucky to come across such a talented person.
I’d love Fazoom to be an inspiration to other children who have their own ideas, and who are inspired to write a book, to know it’s possible for them at any age. And for parents to know, it’s not as difficult as you might think. Children might need a little help with the technical parts and the process, but if I can manage to do it, you absolutely can too!
Special thanks to the Army Welfare Service Book Club and Reading Force for keeping Oscar engaged during lockdown, for bringing Fazoom into the world through his doodles, for the time and energy the fantastic ladies gave during a particularly difficult time. And to Oscar’s illustrator Becky, for her wonderful mind and talent in helping Oscar make his dream come true.
A wonderful creation helped along by some very inspirational people!
You can find Fazoom Saves the Teddy Bears here: