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Archive for November, 2011

Recognition at last!

November 25, 2011 Leave a comment

I had a lovely time yesterday attending a gliterary lunch with my mum and my sister.  Kamin Mohammadi was fascinating on real life in Iran as a child and a returning adult.  She had a lovely speaking manner and I could have listened to her for hours.  Janice Galloway was as sharp and witty as ever, sharing (and contrary to what she said, I think sharing was the right word, it’s not just for sharing biscuits!) snippets of wisdom about life and writing.  She said lots of profound and thought provoking things all wrapped up in an acid sweetie coating of wit.  I can’t wait to read her new book, All Made Up, a second volume of memoirs following the wonderful This is not about Me.

The authors were sitting quite close to us, and afterwards my mum had a word with Janice, who said that she recognised my face.  Now I would like to think that she recognised a fellow writer (though not of course in the same class!), possibly from some publicity I did at the launch of The Wishcatchers.  After all, she does live in Uddingston, so it’s not beyond the realms of possibility that she reads the Hamilton Advertiser…  However, in truth, I think it’s far more likely that as I have been a bit of a Janice Galloway groupie and have been at quite a few of her events over the years, she has seen my face a few times in the audience.  I may even have asked her a question or two.  Still, I can surely still claim it as a small token of literary recognition!

A weird and wonderful story chain

November 21, 2011 Leave a comment

At Creative Corstorphine on Saturday, I started off a story chain – with very surprising results!  Here is the chain which was created on the day.  The changes in colour tell you when a different person took over. 

Disclaimer:  The views expressed in the story chain are not necessarily mine (?!).  Please note that no elephants were harmed in the making of this story chain.

Once upon a time there lived a boy called Max, who loved picking daisiesOne day, he found a trap door in his attic.  He opened it and saw a dancing elephant in swimming trunks, who was dancing the rumba with a cheetah in a bathing suit.  All of a sudden, an alien appeared and it began to dance.  It was the weirdest thing Max had ever seen.  The alien was wearing a blue dotted, pink coloured bikini on its head.  The alien gave the elephant such a fright that he panicked and ran into a different universe.  The elephant was so frightened that he wet himself He asked a kind-looking alien if he could borrow some pantsThe alien said no to the elephant, so the elephant went off in a huff and started crying.  The alien was so angry that he killed the elephant.  The elephant’s mum and dad cried every day for a week but then thought it was good that he had been killed.  The granny and grandpa were sad that their only grandchild was killed.  Sadly, the elephant was pregnant when she was killed but she was not actually killed.  Happily she was able to have her baby before she died of old age.  She was 99 years old.  She was about to do a world record on the oldest elephant in 2011.  There was a giant parrotIt had lived in Max’s bedroom since he was born – that was 11 years ago.  The giant parrot was 77 years old and at his birthday party he got a parrot teddy – the replica of him!

Fun at Low Port Primary!

November 17, 2011 Leave a comment

What a lovely morning I had yesterday with the P3s at Low Port Primary, Linlithgow!  The children there had already started reading The Wishcatchers as their class novel, so I was able to read them some bits from further on in the book – a nice change from always starting my readings at the beginning.

There were some big imaginations in that class, I can tell you, and we had great fun thinking up new ways of describing everyday things and wondering what would happen if…

The children all made wishes at the end of the session and posted them in my wishing box.  I had promised a prize for the best one – but it was so hard to choose.  There were so many good wishes.  Some were funny; some were sad; some made me think.  In the end I managed to choose a winner – and I’m just off to post the letter to tell the class who that winner is.

Thanks to everyone in P3 at Low Port for being such a brilliant audience.  And thanks to Jill from Little Owls Bookshop for arranging the visit.

Hmm, an ethical dilemma…

November 15, 2011 Leave a comment

I’ve come to a certain point in the current book, Operation Anti-slime, where I have realised that what my superhero agents need at this point is Irn Bru.  I don’t want to give too much away, but it appears that only Irn Bru will be effective in their fight against the Slimemaster at this particular time.

Now, as a parent myself, my dilemma is  this.  Can I possibly have Irn Bru – a sugary drink that’s bad for both diet and teeth, a drink that I would only allow my own children as a special treat – as a force for good?

My head says no, make it apple juice instead, but my writerly heart knows that only Irn Bru will do…