SALAMANDA DRAKE – A short biography
Salamanda Drake was born on Pennyloaf Island. At the age of three her father, a dragon trader, moved his family to the much larger island of Finnglass and, when Salamanda was five, he began taking her to fairs and showings around the islands of Bresal. This was how her love of dragons began.
Salamanda was soon spending all her free time (and, she admits, some of the time she should have been at school) at Finn Haven stud where she worked as a volunteer, sweeping out, grooming and exercising the stud’s dragons. Discovering she had a special way with even the most unruly of creatures, she soon learnt that (in her own words) “The only way to train a dragon is to be patient and never give up.”
Her family could not afford to buy her a dragon of her own, but Salamanda became a member of the stable’s riding team, and began to compete in showings.
However, a serious accident in training when she was thirteen kept Salamanda from flying for two years; by which time, her chance of becoming a serious competition rider was gone. This, however, was not the tragedy it might have been; for while she was recovering from her injuries, Salamanda discovered that she had a talent for writing. Soon she was attending showings again, but this time as junior correspondent for the Finn Haven Post-Messenger, reporting on competitions and writing the weekly ‘From The Dragon’s Den’ columns which became a firm favourite with readers.
In recent years, Salamanda has earned yet more fame as a storyteller. Her books for younger readers – ‘Binky, the Brave Little Dragon’, ‘Gruff the Lonely Dragon’, and ‘The Dragon Who Couldn’t Fly’ – have delighted parents and children alike. ‘Dragonsdale, Skydancer’ was her first book for older readers, followed by ‘Riding the Storm’, ‘Snowfall and Dragonfire’ and ‘Flying For Gold’.
Salamanda returned at Pennyloaf Island last year. She has three wyverns – Scratch, Nibble and Smokey – and rides a retired racing dragon called Hillsweeper (Hilly for short). She lists her hobbies as reading, walking, playing the flageolet (she modestly claims to be ‘not very good’) – and watching the skies.