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The power of reading out loud whilst editing

Yesterday, the wonderful Bookouture turned two, my publisher who had (and continues to have) faith in me. That's two years of publishing 22 female authors and building their publishing business into this melting-pot of international creativity…
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For you are a Kenyan child

For you are a Kenyan Child is a children's book not written by a Kenyan adult, but an American writer by the name of Kelly Cunnane and illustrated by a Spaniard, Ana Juan. As far as I'm concerned (and my own children I read it to), the prose…
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A few thoughts on Rejection

I have been meaning to do this for some time, but finally I sat down this morning and counted up how many times my manuscript of The Poet's Wife was rejected before being taken on by Bookouture. Ok, are you ready for this? 83 times. Eighty-three…
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Beebopsbooks

Naomi & 'Beebop' (Livia) at Delamere Forest, celebrating the Gruffalo's 15th Anniversary Naomi writes a blog called Beebopbooks which promotes a love of children's literature and reviews various books for children and their parents. Naomi…
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Vintage Peer Gynt Storybook

As a child, I loved to be read Yoshiharu Suzuki's  (Japanese Illustrator) version of Swan Lake. His delicate, almost childlike but compelling drawings drew me into the world of Odette and Prince Siegfried and made watching the ballet performance…
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The Twelve Dancing Princesses by Jane Ray

I absolutely love Jane Ray's books for children: her illustrations, laced with gold, are sumptuous and detailed with richly decorated borders and her prose sparkles and dances. I want to share 'The Twelve Dancing Princesses' with you today,…
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Pippi Longstocking

Ah, Pippi Longstocking. It is impossible not to love this girl. Gutsy, fierce and the ultimate powerful feminist, I think I'd secretly like to be Pippi. Anyway, something interesting happened yesterday whilst doing a Pippi Longstocking workshop…
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Philip Pullman's Alethiometer

Without this being a conscious choice, my monday afternoon creative writing groups seem to have divided into girls and boys as my after-school club is a group of girls and then I go on to do another session with boys. Now normally I am not in…
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Ndiritu Wahome spins some fairytales

I met Ndiritu Wahome at Storymoja Literature Festival in Nairobi and as I'm a big fan of writing for children, it's great to come across people here in Kenya who write for a younger audience, particularly if their writing is a shift away from…