Once upon a time…because I DO have something to say.


So there we were, walking along the street, and the words popped out of my mouth. ‘Once upon a time….’

I wove words into a simple tale, and got the most gratifying response. ‘More.’

Another story. ‘And more.’

Another. ‘That’s a lovely story, Mama.’ Beaming faces. Intent listening. The urging for my words to keep going, to weave around us in a spell of golden light, to find out what happens next.

And it occured to me – while I have read endless stories to my children, made up millions of songs, I’d never before just said those simple words. Those once-upon-a-time wonders that opened the doors to stories about, well, anything I fancied. My reluntance to tell stories had perhaps hindered me to think about the possibility of creating them for that most brutal, yet loving, of audiences….my very honest children.

So with the words of ‘More, Mama! More stories!’ in my ears, with the memory of my daughter instantly grabbing hold and starting her own ‘once upon a times’ to herself, I sat down to write again.

Pen against paper this time. No straying from what has always been my home, writing for older children and younger adults. My two completed novels, and my half finished novel, are still here in this house. But now there is a new cheapie notebook, lined with my increasingly messy handwriting, filling up with stories the way I told them when I was eight years old. A little at a time, in my own writing, carried around and always ready to record more of what I have to say.


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