Advanced search

September children's picture book of the month - This Moose Belongs to Me by Oliver Jeffers

(74 Posts)
RachelMumsnet (MNHQ) Tue 04-Sep-12 17:38:35

Our September picture book of the month is Oliver Jeffers' delightful new offering The Moose Belongs to Me. It tells the story of Wilfred who thinks he owns a moose called Marcel, and follows him around reading aloud the rules of How to Be a Good Pet. They are getting along swimmingly until someone else claims to own Marcel. This is a story about ownership and sharing which is brought to life by Oliver Jeffers' beautiful and hilarious illustrations. Find out more about The Moose Belongs to Me, watch the video and apply to win one of fifty copies (before 5.30 pm on Wednesday 5 September) by visiting our September Picture book of the month page.

We're delighted that Oliver will be reading all feedback about this book and his other books on this thread. Post your questions to Oliver here and if yours is one of ten chosen, you will win a bundle of his books. We'll be linking to the archived Q&A from here in early October.

Hopezibah Thu 17-Jan-13 23:05:26

big sigh! How lovely reading all of Olivers answers - I always thought he was such an inspiration and now he is even more so. Thank you mumsnet and thank you Oliver Jeffers. I love that answer about 'guitars only have 5 strings but look how many songs have been written on them'. That is just beautiful xxx

OliverJeffers Fri 11-Jan-13 12:35:47


I am always amazed by how children (in particular my son) absolutely adore all of Oliver Jeffers' books. The illustrations are very distinctive, you always know a Jeffers' book. At first I was a bit unsure about them, but my son has gradually made me love them as much as he does. How do you know an idea for book/story is going to work or not? Do you test drive it on anybody?

Not really. It’s just instinct. I seem to have a good sense of judgement for what will work for me. I try to satisfy my own sense of curiosity and create the sort of books I would enjoy, both as a child, and now. Lots of people seem to enjoy the way I see the world. I work with an editor, who I bounce ideas off, but if too many opinions are asked for, and then listened to, it becomes to design-by-committee and you run the risk of diluting a clarity of vision.

OliverJeffers Fri 11-Jan-13 12:35:22


Huge fans in this house. Our question is - What do you currently have in the pipeline and when will it be published ? Whatever it is, we will look forward to it! Thanks for many hours of enjoyment.

I'm currently working on a large collection of (very) short stories that appear in alphabetical order. I think it comes out next year. I recently finished the second Hueys adventure which comes out in May.

OliverJeffers Fri 11-Jan-13 12:35:11


Oliver Jeffers is one of MY favourite authors! I have found that even though my kids really like Oliver Jeffers books, I am the one who is going to be keeping hold of them once they have grown up and left home. Just the other day when we visited the British Library we were trying to think about books with Moose in them and the only other famous Moose we could think of was rocky and bullwinkle which is not quite the same, so we are really pleased about your Moose book.

Sorry - i'm rambling...feeling very start-struck here even just typing a question for one of my fave author/illustrators!

Here's our question: We would like to know what are your favourite animals in real life and how do you decide which animals are going to feature in your story?

thank you! x

I'd love to see a hippo in real life. I've heard they're actually pretty mean. I also love dogs. I have a small dog that came form a shelter. No idea what breed, but we call her Scampi. I don't like mice any more, as there are a family of them living in my studio and I can't get rid of them.

I've never really thought about how I decide which animals I draw. I suppose I just start drawing and sometimes certain animals come out.

I decided a long time ago I didn't want to direct my process any more than I had to. Something was working and that was good enough for me. That still stands.

OliverJeffers Fri 11-Jan-13 12:34:48



Huge fan here, both my husband and I love your books and illustrations as do our two young kids!

As an aspiring children's writer.. (haha, well, ok, I might have written one book... !) I heard you mention that every story comes under 1 of 7 plot lines or story types (something like that?). What are they? I'm intrigued!

Thank you

I've heard this a few times before. And a quick Google search tells me they are:
overcoming the monster; rags to riches; the quest; voyage and return; comedy; tragedy; rebirth.

which sounds about right. I can certainly fit all of my books into one of these structures.

That's just the plot though. Stories come to life through setting, character development, pace, dialogue and any number of other contributing factors. Guitars only have five strings but look how many songs have been written on them.

OliverJeffers Fri 11-Jan-13 12:34:11


Applied even those deadline had been and gone. I absolutely love Oliver Jeffers - the 'trilogy' of Lost and Found etc was the first book I ever bought my son (he'd had hand-me-downs before that) and we have all of them now.

My question is this: your books are often about friendship and how important friends are. Is this something you consciously want to write about to teach children to value their friends or is it more subconscious than that and do you know why that is? (Apologies if that is too personal a question)

Yes the boy books are about friendship. Because there is a quiet emotional sweep about these books, and friendship makes for such an interesting story structure, its a nice platform to work in. Its not that I'm trying to consciously impart any specific lessons about the value of friendships as much as I am fascinated with how we interact with others. As I said, friendships make for interesting stories.

OliverJeffers Fri 11-Jan-13 12:33:46


Hello! My daughter aspires to become a writer/illustrator one day, in your opinion, to become an illustrator is it something which you need to have a natural flair for or is it something that can be learnt and developed?
Do you take inspiration from others to create your style or is that something one develops through practice? Thank you.

It depends on the type of artist you want to be. In my opinion you do need to have natural flair and a confident vision of what you want to do. Various crafts and techniques can be picked up and perfected over years of practice, but with no one else telling you what to do, how you choose to put these crafts and techniques to use can make all the difference. As far as my inspiration, probably a bit of both. No one creates anything in a bubble, so there is no doubt that I've been inspired by things whether I've realized it or not, but much of finding your style comes from learning to see the way your hand likes to draw. That comes from practice.

OliverJeffers Fri 11-Jan-13 12:33:29


Who are your favourite artists / illustrators?

Right now, Kevin Waldron. Because he bought me lunch last week.

OliverJeffers Fri 11-Jan-13 12:33:13


Big skies, wild landscapes and animals...searching, exploring, devouring knowledge (sometimes literally). How much of you is reflected in your books?

An awful lot. To create characters and stories that connect with people, there has to be an honesty to them. The way in which I see my imaginary world is completely informed by the way in which I see the actual world and the experiences that I have collected over the years. It just comes out the way it does after it goes through a filter somewhere in my brain.

OliverJeffers Fri 11-Jan-13 12:32:55


We love his books and the beautiful illustrations. DS would like to know why the boy doesn't have a name?!

The boy doesn't have a name as it makes it easier for people to put themselves in the story. He can be any boy. Anyone reading the book can be him. His world could be anywhere. People from Mexico to Malaysia all believe the boy books are set where they live. If you don't put detail in, often people will fill it for themselves.

OliverJeffers Fri 11-Jan-13 12:32:19


Hi, both of my kids love Oliver Jeffers book and we have watched Lost and Found on many rainy afternoons.

My daughter Eve would like to ask Oliver what his favorite book was when he was a child.


My favourite book as a child was probably the BFG by Roald Dahl. I loved how dark, mischievous, and full of adventure it was.

RachelMumsnet (MNHQ) Fri 11-Jan-13 11:24:41

Horrah ! We finally have answers back from Mr Jeffers. The publishers offer their apologies for the delay - he's been really busy and they had difficulties pinning him down. Better late than never, we'll post his answers up on this thread in just one moment. To recap, if your question has been answered, you have won a bundle of Oliver Jeffers' books. We'll pm you with more details.

gazzalw Wed 09-Jan-13 12:00:51

Don't think the answers are back....

Helium123 Sat 05-Jan-13 22:19:37

Wondering if I'd missed the Q&A ? sad

RachelMumsnet (MNHQ) Thu 29-Nov-12 10:59:31

We're so sorry this has dragged on. We've been assured by Harper Collins that the answers will be back with us by 5 December. Rather than wait further for the Q&A to be archived, we'll post Oliver's answers up on this thread directly and announce the winners of the books. Apologies again for the delay.

FairyPenguin Wed 28-Nov-12 20:13:01

I'm also looking for it but not coming up on a search.

Helium123 Fri 02-Nov-12 00:02:28

Any sign of the Oliver Jeffers Q&A?

Helium123 Tue 23-Oct-12 10:49:34

Looking forward to Oliver Jeffers answers!! Are they back yet?
We loved the book we received! Have enjoyed reading it thoroughly!

Eirwen Thu 18-Oct-12 09:14:31

I'm also very late in commenting. Thanks, Mumsnet and Harper Collins for a really lovely, beautifully illustrated book. Already one of the favourite books at our house!

MTBMummy Mon 15-Oct-12 09:25:56

I know I'm very late - but I just wanted to add that DD loves this book, it's become one of her favorite bedtime books and now knows it by heart (as do I) and she loves to "read" (recite) the story as she pages through with comments like "cheeky moose" thrown in.

Thanks for an amazing book

RachelMumsnet (MNHQ) Mon 01-Oct-12 13:46:12

Thanks for your comments and questions. We've sent a selection of ten questions over to Oliver and will be posting his answers over the next couple of weeks. If he's answered your question, you will win a selection of his earlier books.

We'll be announcing October's picture book of the month tomorrow, along with details of how to access one of fifty free copies - watch this space.

DoubleYew Mon 24-Sep-12 12:49:57

Thank you, we got ours the other day. Really beautiful pictures and a lovely quirky story. We really like it smile.

Mondaybaby Fri 21-Sep-12 22:19:03

Thank you for my copy MN. It arrived on Tuesday but only managed to go and pick it up from the post office today. A lovely surprise.

OptimisticPessimist Thu 20-Sep-12 12:56:08

Ours arrived yesterday, it's a beautiful book - DS2 loved it and gave it 10/10 grin thank you lovely MNHQ, I was sure we weren't going to get one because I'd done the form after the deadline so it was a lovely surprise thanks

ScariestFairyByFar Wed 19-Sep-12 21:04:57

Lovely book thank you very much DD loves it already she likes pointing at the moose in the pictures. Think it will be a favorite as she grows up.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now