Covering the monkey

After three years of thinking and writing, Shut Your Monkey is finally complete. The words are written, the illustrations are completed and the layout is stunning. We just sent the final files to my editors this week and the book will soon head to the printer and be in your hands before Thanksgiving.

The hardest part of creating a new book is working out the cover design.  No matter how many fancy adjectives I’ve used, no matter how many revisions I’ve written, in the end, we know the book will be judged by the cover.

While I have designed most of my books, I wanted to make sure that we pulled out all the stops for Shut Your Monkey. I was lucky enough to enlist the help of one of the top book designers in New York.  Rachel Willey and I batted ideas around for most of the spring and summer and she produced through dozens and dozens of designs. Finally, we and my publishers agreed on a winner. It is fantastic and if you’d like to have a copy of your own, you can preorder it (and the book inside it) right now.

Here is a small selection from the design process.

My ever changing moods

How do I explain who I am and what I do? Some people know me as a blogger, some as an author, others as an Olympic gold-medalling shot putter. To bring all my myriad facets into one place, I have just created a bulging new website, located appropriately enough at

If you are curious, satiate yourself here.

If you share my passion for Paul Weller, then your time will be better spent here instead.