Preston musician swaps drum sticks for pen to write children’s book

Posted on - 21st September, 2021 - 7:00pm | Author - | Posted in - Arts, Ashton-on-Ribble, People, Preston News, Proud Preston
Gizelle Molnar
Gizelle Molnar has illustrated the book

A Preston musician has swapped his drum sticks for a pen to write a children’s book.


Mark Whiteside, who plays in cult band Evil Blizzard, has penned The Car Gnome.

The story is based on memories from childhood, and had been in Mark’s mind for many years prior to writing the book.

“During the lockdown of 2020 I decided to finish the story and look for a publisher,” said Mark. “The story was the easy part, but finding an artist was not.”

Mark Whiteside
Mark says the book has been ‘a labour of love’

Luckily Mark found Gizelle Molnar, who lives just up the road from him in Ashton-on-Ribble.

Mark said: “I already knew Zel, but I didn’t think she would want to come on board with my idea. However she agreed and the rest is history as they say.

“Her paintings are brilliant and add a magic to the book”.

Page from The Car Gnome
The Car Gnome features little boy Joe and his Aunty Flo

Mark says it’s been ‘a labour of love’ to bring the book to fruition.

Now with help from friends and a publisher at Sixth Element Publishing, the book is set to be released for the Christmas market.

Mask added: “I’m amazed at how people have got behind this. After only an hour we had sold 30 books. That may not seem a lot in the realms of books but for me and Zel that is amazing.”

Advance orders are being taken from The Car Gnome website.

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Will you be buying The Car Gnome? Let us know in the comments.

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