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Thursday, 30 October 2014


Five little pumpkins sitting on a gate,
The first one said,
"Oh my, it's getting late."
The second one said,
"But we don't care."
The third one said,
"I see witches in the air."
The fourth one said,
"Let's run, and run, and run."
The fifth one said,
"Get ready for some fun."
Then whoosh went the wind,
And out went the lights,
And five little pumpkins rolled out of sight!

Who put me on the hob?
I did!


Tuesday, 28 October 2014

Shhh - did someone close the library?


Shhh - don't tell anyone.... I've just written a short story to celebrate my granddaughter's fifth birthday next week.

We were doing role play at the top of the stairs the other day  in a specially constructed den  made of cushions, towels and various pieces of furniture from her bedroom. As we stacked up a pile of her favourite books, the talk soon turned to libraries.

What is a lady who works in the library called?' I asked.

'A librarian,' she replied, after a little prompting.

And what does the librarian say when you go in the library?

' Shh...' came the reply.

Shh?' I said. 'What does that mean?'

'It means please keep quiet, Grandma. You have to keep quiet in libraries.'

And so the idea for the 'birthday present' was born. But that's, well, another story...

Meanwhile, I'm  thrilled that  a trip to the library still means as much to my granddaughter as it did to me when I was a young child. Every week my two sisters and I would visit our local library where I first discovered  one of my all-time favourite books 'A Peep Behind the Scenes' a 'turn-of-the-century' story by Mrs O.F. Walton.

 Isn't it  worrying, then, that libraries in the UK are closing every week as local authorities are forced to make 'necessary' cuts.  Free access to books should surely be something for us to pass on to a future generation.  Have you checked on the future of your library lately? If not,  take a look at

Meanwhile,  I would tell you more about my new short story but I can't because..... Shh - I promised not to say a word.

Monday, 6 October 2014

Desire at Downton Abbey...

Writer, actor,  and member of the House of Lords Julian Fellowes might not describe himself as a romantic novelist - but the new series of Downton Abbey proves otherwise.

This week's episode had all the right ingredients, not least a smiling (for a change) Lady Mary, played by Michelle Dockery ( pictured above on her way to a secret liaison.)

But romance is not romance without those who disapprove. And who better than veteran actress Maggie Smith delivering her lines with the precision of a very sharp knife? 'In my day,' she pronounced on the return of her wayward granddaughter, 'a lady was incapable of feeling physical attraction until instructed to by her mama...'

We know it's all ridiculous but we love to believe it and that's what makes it so compelling.
While Lady Mary  was presumed to have been at a 'conference on land management' in Liverpool she revealed, with a perfectly straight face, that she had 'learnt a great deal I did not know before.'
The tongue-in-cheek lines never fail to hit the spot and the tv audience clearly love it...
Romantic novelist? I wonder what they would think of Sir Julian at Mills and Boon?