Horrid Henry author answers questions from School Reporters

Greg and Sophie from Killermont Primary School with a character created by children's author Francesca Simon, "Horrid Henry" Greg and Sophie with Horrid Henry, a character created by Francesca Simon

Interviewing Francesca Simon was a great opportunity. We both found out a lot more about her life, how she gets her ideas and advice for inspiring authors.


  • Francesca Simon is one of the UK's most successful children's authors
  • Her books have sold 17 million copies and been translated into 30 languages
  • One of her best-known creations, and star of many of her books, is the character Horrid Henry
  • School Reporters Greg and Sophie attended a special webcast event and quizzed the famous author

We really enjoyed having a sneak peek at her new book Monster Movie, which she read an extract from. We were the first people in the world to have heard it!

A lot of Francesca's ideas came from her very naughty niece and nephew but Francesca said unfortunately, as they had got older, they had matured!

One of her tips was to mash strange things together - she said that made it easier to write a story that nobody else had.

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Sophie and Greg put questions to Francesca

It was a great experience and we both felt like real reporters”

End Quote Sophie and Greg

We had prepared some questions to ask Francesca in the interview but she answered most of them in the webcast so we quickly wrote down some new ones.

We asked her the following questions:

• If Horrid Henry was in your class how would you control him?

She said she would try to make him interested in the lessons and not let him take control of the class.

• If you were the Prime Minister what would you do to make young people in this country happy?

She told us that if she were Prime Minister she would make sure every school had a good library and the pupils were allowed lots of time to read.

• If you were the Queen what would you like young people to do to celebrate your Diamond Jubilee?

She said that if she was the Queen she would like all the children to read a really good book and bake a cake.

School Reporters Sophie and Greg with children's author Francesca Simon Francesca told Sophie and Greg she was very impressed with their questions

• If you were not an author what would you like to be?

She told us that she wanted to be a tap dancer!

• What are the best and worst bits about being an author?

She said that the worst bit about being an author was when she was trying to start the book and the ideas were not coming. The best bit was when the book was finished and published and was in the book shops.

We were very pleased when Francesca said that she was very impressed with our questions and had never been asked them before.

It was a great experience and we both felt like real reporters.

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