Category Archives: stories for children

Free book for children

book cover summer holidays

This book is free for 5 days. I think it’s scheduled??? Not sure, but the  post has vanished, so if it doesn’t come up tomorrow, I’ll put it on again.

It’s all about Alex who likes getting into adventures with Dougal his dog.

Enjoy the story with your kiddiwinkles if you read it. It’s one of the first stories I published on kindle, and it’s a special story to me for different reasons.

The reason it’s on offer is because of all the items on my blog, this is the one that lots of people look at. So it’s free now for a while.


That’s Life!

My letter is on the back pages of That’s Life! It’s one about when me and our daughter went shopping.

This is one I found in a handbag when I was sorting out my wardrobe. I should have sent it a year ago,

so sent it in this springtime. I was thrilled to have the email saying, ‘we’d like to use your letter in issue 22 of That’s Life.’

Digital imageNext door pussy cat still keeps popping in when he gets the chance. He jumps up on my keyboard, and shoves his nose onto my fingers to stop me typing. His name’s Leo. I’m going to use this photo for the ‘before’ one, when I’m not such a fat person as this.

The great thing is, that you can email your letters or funny stories, or tips, or other regular items, and they pay


Also, hope you’ve had chance to read The Redington Millions, which is the featured serial on Creative Frontiers this week.

It’s the story that has been running from Monday through to Friday, and is set in the village of Redington, in mid-Norfolk.

The plan is to write more stories set in Redington, then when I’ve got enough, they will go into an e-book.

And, I had some income from my amazon stories today. I won’t say how much, but something. So I’m pleased about that.

Still working on the novel, and glad it’s still a working process because I’ve had a change of thought. Also some new ideas.

I’m reading ‘Our man in Havana’ by Grahame Greene. A good story, and plenty of humour.




Welcome Pat Posner

Hope you’ve got a cup of tea, or coffee, so that you can settle down and enjoy this wonderful interview wit Pat Posner. I’m thrilled that Pat has agreed to be our featured author for May. Her stories are magical. For regular readers of People’s Friend, you will know that there aren’t many issues without one of Pat’s stories in there.

Digital image

Your favourite, Pat Posner
Friend favourite, Pat Posner

I began following Pat’s stories when I read a Cresslethwaite story. The mobile library was shutting down, and the character in the story depended on the library for her busy days in the tea shop. She came up with the idea of finding a corner for books, and this became the lending library. It was such a lovely story, I immediately wanted to go and visit Cresslethwaite, and have a drink in that tea-room, chat to the people, and find a book. That is the mark of a good story teller, and I’ve been hooked on Pat’s stories ever since.


S/ Pat, my first introduction to your stories was one set in the picturesque village of Cresslethwaite.
Where is this lovely place? Is it somewhere you’ve visited, or a mixture, because wherever it is, I want to go and visit.

P/ Hello, Susan. Thank you so much for inviting me here for a chat.
Cresslethwaite has quite a lot in common with the small villages and settlements in Littondale – a dale in North Yorkshire. It’s probably most like the main village, Arncliffe, where the outside locations for Emmerdale Farm (as it was in its early days) were filmed.

S/ We’d like to know a bit more about your Craikeworth Hall stories please? Did you write these with a particular place in mind, and did you need to research, or are the stories purely fiction? Since putting this issue together, I read on the letters page that one lady gave her son the middle name Craik, after the hall. The registrar wanted to put Craig, but she was adamant, he would be Craik. You’ve started a new trend Pat.

P/ I was researching traditions related to Shrove Tuesday and came across information about the Skipping Festival held in Scarborough on Pancake Day. It has been an annual event since 1903. Well, I’d already got a few characters (downstairs staff of a big house called Craikeworth Hall) ‘screaming’ for a story and, all along, I’d known they were from the early 1900s. I’d spent quite a while with them already – making sure their names were not only from the right era but also matched their personalities. Characters’ names are very important to me, once they’ve got the right name they spring to life.

Anyway, I decided Craikeworth Hall would be somewhere a couple of miles away from Scarborough and that some of the maids were hoping to go to the Skipping Festival. The rest, as they say, “is History”.

S/ Now, Pat, we can’t go any further without talking about the pre-fab stories. Set in the wonderful Broome Park Village, 1950’s era. Family spirit and sharing with neighbours is the theme that comes across in these adorable stories with those brilliant illustrations to match. You have the knack of showing us how hard times can be warm and wonderful in these stories. What made you choose such an unlikely setting for a series that can never read enough of?

P/ I honestly don’t know how I chose it. The prefab village and the villagers living there just sort of ‘came’ as the complete deal. When I realised the village was near a park, I chose Broome Park Prefab Village for the name because my favourite park when I was a tot (in the 1950s) was Broomfield Park – there weren’t any prefabs near it, though.

S/ We also love the Lobb Clough Farm stories. Recent one has been published in May issue of People’s Friend. Did you live on a farm, or is it purely from imagination?

P/ We do live in a farmhouse on a sheep farm but, although they seem to think differently, they aren’t our sheep and we aren’t farmers. I have used our farmhouse and surroundings in short stories and in a pocket novel but Lobb Clough Farm and its labourers’ cottages are set on a different Lancashire moor. The stories take us back to life in the 1840s.

S/ with so many series of stories going on, it’s sometimes easy to forget that you also write loads of stand-alone stories. Do you prefer to write something completely different, or are you happier writing the favourites?

P/ Oh, that’s a hard one to answer. As long as I’m happy with a story-line and I feel I really know the characters, I’m happy to write their story whether it’s a stand-alone or part of a series. Though, shhh! I think I love my prefab folk the ‘mostest’.

S/ How many stories did you send to People’s Friend before you had an acceptance? I know it wouldn’t have been many:)

P/ I think it was only two or three. “A Dog for Grandad” was published in 2006. I think that was after I’d had my first Pocket Novel accepted. But after that one short story acceptance the next few mss were rejected (with very helpful comments). I was still mainly writing children’s books back then so I didn’t try any more stories for the “Friend” until around 2010. The first four were rejected but I kept trying and “Cream-tea Tuesdays”, the first Cresslethwaite story was accepted in 2011.

S/ Any other information you have to tell us on People’s Friend Pat, your journey to becoming one of their top writers would be great.

P/ After the Cresslethwaite acceptance I really, really stuck at it and concentrated only on writing stories for the People’s Friend. I’d always loved the magazine – reading it for research (very important) as well as for pleasure wasn’t a hardship – and, after a few more acceptances, to think I might become a regular “Friend” writer kept me going through the rejections – and, yes, I still get a few! My editor, the lovely Shirley Blair, gives fantastic feedback and very often her comments help me turn a ‘No’ into a ‘Yes’. I feel the entire PF team are friends and I hope I’ll be writing for the magazine, and writing Pocket Novels, too, for many years to come.

S/ Amazing interview Pat, and thank you so much for taking time to let us into your People’s Friend world.

You can find Pat’s blog here…..

Her latest Pocket Novel is on sale now.  Tangled Web009

Also she has lots of children’s books, can be found on her blog. I like the look of this one.

punch and JudyLooks good doesn’t it?


Look out for another interview in June…………



2013 in review, thanks to all my followers.

The stats helper monkeys prepared a 2013 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 3,500 times in 2013. If it were a cable car, it would take about 58 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

Thanks for following, and look forward to more posts in the New Year.

Can you write fiction?

When you write fiction, have you ever tried writing about a place that does exist, but you haven’t been to? I understand the rule of writing what we know, but fiction is made up, so with all the resources available to us nowadays, why not write about somewhere you haven’t been? Elizabeth George in Writing magazine July issue, says that it’s not possible to write properly about somewhere you’ve never been; she toured Cornwall for her crime novels. I saw a t.v. programme, where Ian Rankin did the same in Scotland. They are great writers, but on the other hand, can we have a story going on, and use a fictional version of a place, using information you’ve gathered?

I’ve had a go on my website, on the prompts page here
The story needs editing again, but I’m having a go at writing from a male viewpoint, and a grumpy old one as you can see. My children’s story, written from the viewpoint of a nine year old boy, here.

I’ve been tidying the house as you can see above, (no, not really, it’s fiction) our house is more lived in than that. Looks a good setting for a story though doesn’t it?

new haircut.

Wish me luck, I’m off to work tomorrow, my first day at the helpline, looking forward to that.

Summer Holidays – Story for children.

Here’s me having a go at e.publishing.

new haircut.

Notice that it’s a story, not a novel

My e – story for children. Take a look here

Alex, the boy in the story is nine years old. It’s aimed at children around that age. Then again, I love all children’s stories.

It’s an adventure story; one that you could read to the children while traveling; down to Devon preferably, as it’s set in and around Exmoor. Now don’t all rush to point out any mistakes, this is my first go, so hope somebody somewhere reads it and likes it. I do. I’ve just finished reading this. The double comfort safari club.

By Alexander McCall Smith. He’s an amazing writer, and has a brilliant way with words. When you’ve finished one of his

books, you have to get another. Luckily he writes thousands of words a day. Read about him here.