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Jun 2014



To celebrate the publication of Mysterium 3: The Wheel of Life and Death email or tweet your best circus or magic trick - or design a Mysterium poster - and very limited edition cover art prints and signed copies could be yours...

TheMysteriumbook1myst2covermysterium3coversmall copy

Can you juggle three eggs, do a somersault, make rabbits appear from a hat, ride a unicycle - or something even more amazing? If so - and without risking your life! - get someone to photo or make a short video and either post to Twitter or email for your chance to win!

If you want to do something more sedate, then design a poster for the Mysterium Circus!

One winner will receive A2 fine prints of cover art for all three books and a signed trilogy.

Two runners up will receive signed copies of all three books.

1. Photos and scanned posters please no bigger than 2 mb file size. Videos as Vine if sent - or upload longer or better quality files to YouTube and send me a link.

2. Post images or links to Twitter (
@julianaurelius) or email to

3. Closing date: August 31st 2014.

4. Winners will be contacted by Twitter or email by Sept 5th.



How truly exciting finally to hold in my hands the physical form of the Mysterium Trilogy!

Finished creative works never really betray the months (years!) of anxiety and work that go into making them. Hopefully they arrive looking fully formed, and as if that was the only way they could have looked. As if they were meant to be just as they are. Holding my three finished and beautifully packaged volumes I got a brief sense of that…

… but then, having a clear out both on the computer and in my drawers, I found old drafts for Mysterium, old working notes, old charts - saw characters’ names change, settings shift, chapters disappear and re-appear in kaleidoscopic confusion.

Danny had various other names that I had now completely forgotten. Certain thematic and plot points had winked in and then out of existence. Even the titles of the individual books - and the series as a whole - changed during the process of submission, rewriting, editing. And somewhere, in irretrievable bits, lies the first version of half of Book 2 on a corrupted hard drive. (I keep that on the desk now as a kind of
memento mori and paperweight.)

These shifting quicksands made everything feel so contingent and vulnerable that I suffered a sudden pang of vertigo and had to go and walk around the garden…

And yet amongst all that uncertainty I knew that certain key images, certain character traits, and even certain sentences were strong enough to survive. They felt more like they were waiting to be found, and - once they had been found and slotted into place - were not shifting for anyone or anything. It always felt like that with painting - the (few) I really liked felt like I had nothing really to do with them except sticking a frame round them. It was the ones that were full of superfluous ‘me’ that didn’t feel successful.

Thank goodness for happy discoveries. And thank goodness too for the support and wisdom of editors, agents, designers, friends and family who help navigate all the countless micro-decisions and bring about something that at least looks coherent in the end!


Delighted to announce that US rights for Mysterium have been sold to Carolrhoda, an imprint of Lerner Books.

Publication schedule yet to be finalised, but Carolrhoda are keen to expand their mid grade list and want Mysterium to be a centrepiece (‘centerpiece’ maybe?) for that.

really looking forward to supporting US publication and see the Mysterium Circus make landfall there...


Mysterium 1: The Black Dragon wins the Upper Category Award at the Rotherham Children’s Book Awards.

It was a surprise and joy to drive home from a sunny Rotherham with my first award in the bag. The shortlists were all genuinely strong and contained wonderful books - any of which deserved to win…

The morning itself at Rotherham United’s New York Stadium was already rewarding enough. A succession of motivated and interested students visited each author table and provided that thing that all authors value: the proof that someone is reading - and enjoying! - your writing. Even though one or two schools whispered to me that they had voted for Mysterium, I was still astonished when the announcement was made.

Thanks again to everyone in Rotherham who helped to organise and run the day and to everyone who read and voted - for any of the books.

And thanks also to fellow nominees in YA and Upper categories Lucy Adlington, Teri Terry and Catherine Johnson whose company also helped to make the day most enjoyable…

© Julian Sedgwick 2019