Category: Blog

Got My Orange Crush

I have no idea why I woke up with the R.E.M song ‘Orange Crush’ going around in my head. Earworms are a normal start to my day but this one was particularly loud and insistent. Once the first sip of tea was consumed, it dawned on me once again that I had finished my first draft of current WIP. A milestone I’ve been trying to reach for months and finally, I’ve got there. The pile of paper sitting in its brand new folder, waiting to be read out loud before heading to my favourite in-house geek for tense and grammar

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The Dog That Bites

The dog that follows me is not always black. Sometimes I don’t even see it as a colour as such, more of a presence waiting in the wings, ready to pounce when I least expect it. I liken it to a storm that’s brewing as a cluster of clouds form overhead, threatening to let their watery cargo fall to earth with great force and destruction. Dramatic as that may seem, when the world stops spinning for a second and the realisation sets in that rain is on the way, there’s always a strange lull before the onslaught begins. The undermining

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Words Are Beyond Powerful

Words are a spattering of letters jumbled together to make coherent sentences. They are the beginning of a story or the creation of a song. Words twist and turn and meander across the page, their journey coming to an abrupt stop with the placement of pencil lead proclaiming the end of an idea with a small dot. Yet words can be cruel, forever held in time for the world to see. Unforgiving and shameful in their lot, words prod at the mind as guilt spreads its talons and digs in deep. Words can rejuvenate and replenish a soul but only

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When a Thank You is Never Enough

The whoosh of the automatic doors lead me to the original stone staircase. I can still see glimpses of the 150 year-old structure if I look to either side, beyond the modern shiny linoleum floor to the bricks and mortar beneath. These steps hold a thousand stories from all the children that have walked up them since it opened in 1860.  I had entered The Royal Hospital for Sick Children in Edinburgh. A few weeks ago, I approached my fellow members of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) and beyond, to see if they might consider donating

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International Book Giving Day – 14th February 2018

For those new to this wonderful day in the literary world, please add 14th February to your calendar. It’s not just for giving your sweetheart a home-made card on the universal day of love but for another special reason… FEBRUARY 14TH 2018 – International Book Giving Day Emma Perry, creator of the wonderful book review website My Book Corner, is the brains behind this amazing book giving day shout out. This year, the 6th year running, she has teamed up with illustrator Elys Dolan to create the much admired poster to promote this amazing event. Elys is an author and illustrator based

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My Reekie Lum and Other New Year lists

Before my lum reeks wi’ the fuel o’ ithers coal… for those unacquainted with this term, it’s a saying for when the bells chime in a new year at midnight. It means ‘may your fire always burn to keep you and yours warm and release lots of smoke from your chimney with the gifts of coal from your neighbours as you bring in another new year’, or something along those lines… I was thinking about new year resolutions and whether or not they are useful for me to create or if I’m just kidding myself. Every year I say I

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