Should be on my way to London to Walker Books, for a longed-for and exciting meeting with my editor and designer AND the illustrator. BUT I am stuck at home in Yorkshire still fighting off a horrid grumpish fluey-buggy thing (cough, cough, ache, ache)and feeling sorry for myself instead. I emailed down some thoughts about how I'd imagined the pictures. I'm now keeping fingers crossed that my suggestions don't put her off deciding she'd like to do the artwork. Maybe it's better that I'm hidden away in the Yorkshire depths?
Last school visit of this Spring Term was a lovely day at ST NICHOLAS'S PRIMARY SCHOOL in Hull. I was busy telling stories and talking about my books - and trying out a rather wonderful sheep puppet! (Baaaaaaa! Baaaaa!) Everyone was so friendly, the children were great, with excellent questions and ideas. So my personal "end of term" day was a real positive pleasure. Thank you, everyone! Oh, nearly forgot. Must mention those very exciting stories from the Year Six writers I read during the lunch hour. Very well done!
Now it's my turn to get on with some writing! Of which, more news soon. Hope you all have a happy end of term, too.
A return visit to HEADFIELD JUNIOR SCHOOL, Dewsbury, to tell some tales with the Year 4 children. Thank you for being such great listeners, everyone. I hope that every set manages to share their stories within their own class group, too!
Tuesday was an interesting session. I was invited to do a "Storyteller" session as part of "BACK STAGE PAST", a brilliant after-school project linked to the re-development of the Grand Theatre in Leeds. So a wave to the Year 5 children & staff of NEWLANDS PARK PRIMARY SCHOOL, ho helped to build up the Mustard Painting and Pretty Piano Playing stories.
Wednesday, and a very helpful day at ST JAMES' CHURCH PRIMARY SCHOOL, Allerton, Bradford. Lots of lovely sessions, and great to see the parents coming along as well. Also had some very interesting discussion about my books from Year 5 & Year 6 classes. It makes such a difference to be able to talk to this age group in some detail, so thanks to the teachers for this! (And thanks to Year 6 for their very helpful comments on my newest project. I cannot tell you how much it cheered me to know I might have got the right "voice" for the story. Thanks, thanks, thanks! Though I'm still not sure about adding the extra "meat" to the school gruel, my friends!
Tried to do a Tuesday night hello to ST. HILDA'S SCHOOL, Oldham, as I'd visited there that afternoon, but no message made it through the blog-machine. Will this? Will St Hilda's end up with two greetings or none? Testing, testing. . .!
Hello to St HILDA'S PRIMARY SCHOOL, Oldham, who I am really looking forward to seeing this afternoon, though I'm hoping the snow holds off along the M62. I do love to see snow, but I totally HATE driving in it - and there's plenty of Big Hills for slip-slipping on during the drive there. And back. Ooo-er!
AND EVEN MORE on BOOK WEEK VISITS!
'Tis the season to be booky, it seems. So a hello to RACEMEADOW PRIMARY SCHOOL's Reception Class, who I met in Atherstone Library, and also ABACUS NURSERY, who came to Nuneaton Library. Thanks to the Warwickshire Library staff who helped arrange these sessions.
Then onwards, to a Tuesday at GREENOAKS PRIMARY SCHOOL, Northampton, where teachers, schools and doors were all beautifully dressed up. I felt right posh myself the next day, as I had a friendly driver from THE WELLWISHER BOOKSHOP to take me to NOMANSLAND PRIMARY SCHOOL in the New Forest, Wiltshire on Wednesday. Thanks for all the lovely story ideas!
Thursday brought a morning visit to the lovely classes at ST MARYS SCHOOL, Calne, where I was looked after by a very caring librarian, and this was followed by a fantastic Friday at MILLBROOK INFANTS, Kettering. And then, very gratefully, up the motorway to home, sweet home.
Unfortunately, I had a head too full of anxious thoughts to settle to sleep, so escaped to 1930's Alcatraz till the dawn's early light by reading AL CAPONE DOES MY SHIRTS by Gennifer Choldenko, a great teen title by Bloomsbury. Now, Sunday evening, there is deep snow outside, and a happy cat warming herself on the radiator by my desk. A week mostly at home ahead, and so very, very welcome. Aaaahhh!(Contented sigh!)
WORLD BOOK DAY - er - WEEK!
Just reached the WBDW halfway point, so thanks to everyone at CROSSLEY FIELDS JUNIOR & INFANT SCHOOL, Mirfield, for Monday's dragon stories, and the noisy poem, and the magical writing.
Then Tuesday thanks to everyone at MARGARET MACMILLAN PRIMARY SCHOOL, Bradford, for being such very good listeners - and such good questions, too!
Today's big thanks go to all at HORTON-IN-RIBBLESDALE PRIMARY SCHOOL for a lovely morning, making a fairy story poem, and a scary new Legend of the Lost Cave. Such magical weather: a clear blue sky, sun on the golden bracken, and long winter light on the fells. Above it, a dusting of snow on the summit of Pen-y-Ghent. Am I not a lucky woman?
I'm hoping the snow doesn't come further down the valleys, as I''m looking forward to seeing everyone at OCKBROOK SCHOOL, Derbyshire, tomorrow for World Book Day itself (big wave! hello! hello!) and then, on Friday, my friends at WALSDEN INFANTS SCHOOL, nr Todmorden. (See you all soon!)