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This is just to say . . .

This is just to say that I may not be long for this world now. About 15 years ago I was diagnosed with a blood condition which was incurable but fairly manageable. I was told that in due course this might convert to something more serious (myelofibrosis) which would more rapidly end my life. This is a kind of blood cancer with up to now no known cure. The conversion has already taken place. According to my doctors and consultants I can expect to live for about one more year from now, though growing weaker all the time. I am writing this on 15th February 2022. So I may live to see early 2023, but not certainly. There's a chance that my condition could convert further and suddenly to acute leukaemia, in which case I would die rather more swiftly of that. Any time from now, in fact.

With the help of my web manager, the excellent Kate MacRae (also known as Wildlife Kate online -- do see her webpages and blogs) this children's writer website has been re-established on I plan for it to remain up for a while after my death, as some of my books will survive me and some new ones may come out posthumously (that is, after I've gone).

I've had plenty of time to adjust to the fact of dying a little earlier than I might have hoped. I am now 71 years old as I write this, so, by global standards, have not done too badly. And I leave behind me (for a while, for everything passes eventually) many picture books, poems and some prose works. Some of these I am pleased to have written and had published. And many or most have had good circulation through both sales and library loans. And some have even won prizes. So I cannot complain, looking back on my late career as a writer for children.

I may do a little writing between now and my death. And I have an unpublished collection of poems that I may muster the energy to put through. But with this condition my energy is very low and I cannot do much work in a day. So maybe I'll have to let it all go and leave unpublished work where it is. The national centre for the children's book, Seven Stories, in Newcastle, now have my Archive with nearly all of my unpublished work, manuscripts and other related work. So should you be a researcher or student of children's literature, that will be the place to find my archive materials.

And my Agents, David Higham Associates, will continue to manage my back list, so please continue to consult them about using my work in anthologies and other publications. It will remain under copyright for (I believe) 75 years from the date of my death. As I write, my agent at David Higham continues to be Caroline Walsh. Should she retire, my list will continue to be managed by someone else in house there.

So, to all my readers out there . . . thank you for reading me. Long live poetry, stories, prose and all things literary !

All my very best, Tony Mitton, Cambridge, 15th February 2022

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I am an old school friend of Tony’s with some memories of him when he was, for a few months, my best friend at Woolverstone. My name is Noel Pinnington, and I am a retired professor at the University of Arizona. I was just writing an email to Tony but it failed to send. I simply wanted to say I enjoyed his work, wish him and his family well, and to mention my happy memories of him (and his poetry) at school.


Hi Tony, hello from Singapore! This is my first time at your site and I’m saddened by your news. You have brought so much joy to my toddler - he’s 3 and simply loves the lyrical rhymes in your books (cool cars was the first book we read to him and still is an absolute favourite). Thank you for making this world a little better with the books you put out into the world!


Dear Naomi, Good luck with your PGCE. And thank you for your keen responses to my work. Best wishes from Tony Mitton (now in hospice).


Naomi Peat
Naomi Peat

I'm a mum of three about to use your Diosaurumpus in an interview for a PGCE (that's how much I love this book!).

I'm sorry to read your latest post and I just wanted to say - you've bought such incredible joy to this house through your stories. Every child in my home has treasured them. I don't think there are many more wonderful gifts to leave in this world than beautiful books which inspire, engage and delight the next generation.

Best Wishes, Naomi


Hello, I'm in 4th grade. In my English class, I am doing a biography about you. I like your Plum book and all the poems in it. I hope you live your life very well.

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