Monthly Archives: December 2011

Boxing Day

The Daughter had the board game QI as one of her Christmas presents yesterday so in the spirit of Stephen Fry let me bestow upon you knowledge you never knew you needed. Boxing Day, according to my Ladybird Book of Christmas Customs, goes back to medaeval times when alms boxes were placed at the back […]

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Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all my readers. Wishing you the best of times for the year ahead  

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Christmas Stories

The shops are full of Christmas books for children. Raymond Briggs’ Father Christmas is a good one, as is Allan Ahlberg’s Jolly Christmas Postman and I agree with many of the others mentioned on this list which is why I’m not going to compile my own. Lazy or what? Guilty as charged.  Obviously there’s only one true […]

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Woot!

I’ve had an idea for a story. It’s based around a man and a sweeping brush. I haven’t thought of a name for the man yet but I’m veering towards Siegfried. OK, let’s go for that. Siegfried it is. Now Siegfried’s job is to sweep up old words that nobody wants any more. They gather in a special grille on Obsolete Street. […]

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Here Lies Arthur – book review

If you like your history dark and your heroes seriously flawed you’ll adore Here Lies Arthur by Philip Reeve. Reeve takes all the great episodes from the Arthurian Legend and gives them a mighty shake. Through the eyes of Gwyna, a young peasant girl with a preternatural ability to swim for long periods underwater, we find out what ‘really’ happened […]

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Sticky Ends

Want to buy a book for a younger brother / sister/child this Christmas? Aged about… 6 or 7?  Try this new hardback book of Cautionary Tales by the impossibly prolific Jeanne Willis . I loved her cat tale Silly Cecil and Clever Cubs and Dr Xargle’s Book of Earthlets is genius but Sticky Ends is funny too. […]

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When in doubt… make a list

OK, I admit it; I’m a list kind of girl. I know, I know. Interesting, busy people don’t have time for lists becuase they’re too busy doing interesting and busy people type things. I don’t care. I list therefore I am. Lists help me organise my thoughts. If it’s down on paper, it’s out of […]

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Christmas Cards

I’ve just posted off my third batch of Christmas cards. Batch 1 went last week – they’re the overseas ones. We have have relatives in Poland, Germany and Spain and friends in America, Mauritius, Jamaica and Norway. Delivery takes a lot longer to these places, obviously, so the earlier they go the better. The second batch were to schools and […]

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West End School, Cleckheaton

I had my last school visit of the year today and 2011 ended on a high. The pupils from West End Middle School were ace. They came to the library as part of MAK(Mission Active Kirklees) a joint venture between the council, library services and schools to encourage children to get active and think healthy. […]

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Research: or why I’m skint

 No matter what type of story I write, I end up doing at least some research and while the internet is great for instantaneous answers I still prefer books. I like the physical act of pulling them off the shelf, of leafing through the pages to double-check something. Most of all I like the ownership. That […]

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