For those of you interested in entering a short-story competition (open to KS1 and KS2 children only) the deadline for entries has been extended.
To find out more click here: Tenacity Competition
I'm looking forward to reading the finalists.
I was thrilled when Thirteenth Wish was selected as one of the books for the club and invited to take part in a live reading and Q&A session on Saturday 24 April 1.30-2.30pm.
The fact that the club is part of SHU is particularly important to me as it is where I went to university. I lived in Sheffield for many years. I got married there and both my children were born there. Sheffield will always feel like another home to me.
The event is completely FREE and open for anyone to attend. If you would like to join in, all you need to do is click on this zoom link at the end of this blog entry and register your email address. Please note if you are under 16 you will need to attend with an adult and use an adult's email address to register. If you want to find out more about Book-Able Space Middle Grade Book Club there is a facebook page which you can access here: Facebook Page
Hope to see you there!
I'm delighted to have been asked to deliver a talk and take part in a Q&A as part of the online Inspire Conference held by Goldsmiths University of London. It is part of a two day event taking place on Thursday 15 & Friday 16 April.
My 'slot' is 9-9.30am on Friday 16 April where I will be talking about the practical side of school visits.
The conference is aimed at anyone working in education who is looking at ways to bring more creativity and inspiration into their lessons and/or for their own wellbeing. It covers talks, workshops and ideas from all kinds of creators, such as poets, teachers, lecturers, novelists and journalists.
If you would like to take part in the completely FREE festival, or want to find out more please visit the website by clicking on the link below:
Please also remember that the eBook that I contributed to which led to the creation of this festival is also available to download for FREE. More details on how to do this are on the Inspire Conference website (link above).
Delighted to have been asked to be a guest judge for Tenacity's Creative Writing Competition. You can find out about the competition by clicking on this link: Tenacity's Competition
Tenacity is a group of 23 sixth formers who have set up an independent company to supply downloadable education packs for primary schools in several areas of the curriculum. As part of their work they are running a short story writing competition with two categories: Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2. Entrants are asked to write a story of up to five hundred words around the theme of cheering up Terry the Tiger, the mascot of Tenacity.
It's going to be brilliant to read the entries. I do love a good competition.
Good luck if you're taking part!
I had my annual ALCS statement the other day which showed that my books are being borrowed quite regularly from public libraries, despite the pandemic.
As I'm not a well known name, but books are not everywhere, so it's not a huge amount of money, but, more importantly, it made me feel really good. My books are being borrowed and being read - this is the whole point of being an author!
It also shows you, the reader, that if you borrow books from libraries it really does make a positive impact on the author's life. They get paid every time their books are lent out.
Thank you to anyone who has borrowed my books, you made my week!
Last night was a 'cross off my wish list' event: I hosted a SCBWI Panel as part of the 1-1 Festival that I'm jointly running with fellow SCBWI volunteer Mandy Rabin.
When I joined SCBWI, back in 2015, going to events, such as the Industry Insiders panels, were one of the things I benefitted most from. I eyed the hosts with envy and last night I got my crack at the whip. I was able to lead a very interesting, open discussion with Literary Agents, Davinia Andrew-Lynch (Andlyn Literary Agency) and Christabel McKinley (DHA) and Commissioning Editor Tom Bonnick (Nosy Crow).
All three panelists were warm, welcoming, and honest. We covered all kinds of interesting topics, from sustaining the trend of increasing diversity in Children's Publishing to how the pandemic has affected submissions.
Here's hoping I did a good enough job that I get asked to host a few more and good luck to everyone who is having their 1-1 with an Industry Professional today.
PS I forgot to pass on a very helpful tip that someone shared with me just before my 1-1 with Bella Pearson (Guppy Books) at the SCBWI conference - ask if you can record it. I used the voice memo function on my phone and Bella was totally fine about me recording our conversation. Can't tell you how many times I listened to that recording, it helped me enormously when redrafting Call Me Lion. Good luck!
It was fantastic to 'visit' Bromet Primary School last week as part of World Book Day week and rest assured to the children who have kindly ordered books from here, they're on the way!
Not being able to visit schools has been the most difficult part of lockdown for me and I'm so happy that children are back in classrooms on Monday. I hope it goes well.
Remember if you're interested in an author visit please just contact me. You can find out more about more by going to my author visits page.
Thank you Bromet Primary for making me feel like a 'real author' again and good luck with your writing.
This went live at 11am today. Arkem is a fabulous professional storyteller and here he brings to life The Story of the Lost Pirate Ship. This is a book I wrote, well really a Y2 class at Bethnal Green wrote it, as part of the wonderful Catching Words Project that I was lucky enough to be part of last year. Anyway, I do hope you enjoy it!
Inspire, the collaborative book on teaching creative writing practice that I contributed to, is available as a free download on the Goldsmiths Centre for Language Culture and Learning (CLCL) website: http://research.gold.ac.uk/id/eprint/29515/ – feel free to download and/or share widely.
Welcome to my blog, a place where you can keep up to date with what I am up to.