Books for children
A Safe Place. My first book published for children. I never intended to write a picture book, but somehow that’s what happened. It’s a picture book for little ones, about Kyla’s trip with dad and brother Leo to see granny on granny’s birthday. Except Kyla keeps leaving the present behind… . I’ve read this book to lots of different aged children (including my own), and am always surprised and touched by their enthusiastic reaction to it.
Danny’s Adventure Bus. Another picture book, dreamed up on an endlessly stop-starting bus journey home one day. Danny’s stuck on a bus with his mum, but he has his magic driver’s hat to hand, and can get out of any jam. I love the illustrations in this one – a complete contrast to A Safe Place.
In the Eye of the Storm. I wrote this when I worked at ActionAid many years ago now. It was originally a ‘big book’ for whole class use, then they produced a set of smaller readers. It’s a non-fiction book about life in a village in Bangladesh. As it was my first real book, my mum bought about 10 copies! I think it still holds up well, even though I wrote it about 12 years ago.
Books for parents
Learn to Read and Write. My most recent publication, I wrote this for Letterland. It’s for parents of toddlers, pre-schoolers and early readers, that gives a background to how phonics and reading is taught in schools, and lots of practical ideas for helping children with literacy development. Most of the ideas in it are things I’ve done every day with my own kids since they were tiny, so they’re all very easy, not time-consuming and completely free!
I’ve written for The Guardian newspaper and, in my previous life, articles on assessing PSHE education for education magazines. I’ve been featured by The Library as Incubator Project where you can read my piece about writing in libraries. I’ve also written guest blogs for the Picture Book Den, Nosy Crow and Red House Books. I’m an occasional contributor to the Guardian website’s Running Blog and to welldoing.org
I’ve also written short stories for adults. Filament Magazine published my first one (under a pseudonym), as well as an article I wrote about the ambiguities in and misconceptions (ahem) of sex and relationships education in schools around the world. I’ve submitted short stories and flash fiction to writing competitions, and to Mslexia.