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September News

Well what a month it has been.

The visit to North Yorkshire was really good. I’ve already added the waterfall and viaduct photos.

The following weekend was my son’s wedding. A wonderful occasion. I’d been asked to write a poem for the occasion, (which I did and finalised last month), and I read it during the ceremony. The weather brightened up for the photos and everything seemed to go well.

The weekend after that I was away in Spain. As the plane took off, a poem came to me, which i quickly jotted down on my ever ready notebook, and I realised it was my first new poem of the month. The poems have come thick and fast since then. I have one that may be called “These are not my Shoes”, and one called “Time Flies”. Although theres still a possibility of a poem about the very  long walk to Mallyam Spout waterfall, and the resultant extremely painful legs! So – lots of work to do now.

To top off the month, I had a lovely time this evening at HOurbank, Dearne, where I had been invited to read some poems from my book. Not only did I get to read, but heard from many people who had, at some point, written poems them selves.

I had some great feedback too.

Tomorrow sees the end of September, and it’s my grandson’s birthday. Looking forward to a busy family weekend, but in honesty, hope October is a little more relaxed.

Book reviews

Here’s what people have said about my book “In Search of Sympathy or a Cure – a collection of Rhyming Poetry.”


“Grinning, chuckling and occasionally with poignant thought, I reached
the end of your book yesterday. Indeed, the chuckling had started
on Saturday -….” JCB, Leicester

“…my nine year old daughter is really enjoying it too”. DD, Denaby

“Really enjoying it and found it hard to put down…. I didn’t want to read it all at once.” SE, Ipswich

Proud owner of a copy of this book. Some brilliant stuff in there, ….definitely worth it” SD, Wilts.

Launch Week

Tracking where I have been and whats been done is not such a strong suit. I thought I would be tracking it here, but the days have just whizzed by, and I am just now trying to catch up.

Letters written to newspapers and libraries.  Possible sales outlets visited. All should be pre-launch really – and with plenty of notice. I would not recommend this approach. It needed far more advance planning. But I only had this one shot, and it’s been really good to do this preliminary work now. It will be good for the coming Autumn season, with possible sales for Christmas gifts.

It actually comes out looking like an awesome Family week though. I don’t mind sharing that.

Sunday – Added a new section to a song lyric, and tidied up  a couple of the verses. Not completely happy with it yet, but it will be epic!

Monday – Wrote emails, and posted off some preorders. Took grandsons, age 8 and 7,  to Pastures Moo ice cream parlour in Wath upon Dearne, for a summer ice cream treat. Then to Meadowhall Vue cinema for the BFG movie. Forty minutes of adverts and not a great film. Brought the younger of the two boys out after an hour, and bought some scrummy chips. Re-wrote a draft poem about passion, in a sceptical tone.

Tuesday – Rotherham Town Centre. Secured an arrangement with the Rotherham Tourist info centre to stock some of my books. Will go back in a couple of weeks to see how that’s going. In the evening, went to an open mic night at Brinsworth, just to see what goes on. Great live music. All very enthusiastic players – guitars, fiddle, drums, harmonica and some good songs. Hope to get brave and sing one of my own compositions here at a later date. Was driving so only had Pepsi to drink. Kept me awake all night. Gave up trying to sleep at 4am and wrote a rhyme about it.

Wednesday – Took our grandsons to Hornsea. A day out at the seaside. Nice sandy beach, plenty of teashops and loo stops. Picnic lunch and Wonderful fish and chips for tea.

Thursday – Reviewed some finances, paid balance for a little holiday coming up next month, and took some orders to post. Then off to see my new baby grandson, who launched into the world the same week as my book! Lovely cuddles, and fun times with family. Tonight, prepared intro letters for people who want paper mail

Back to Rawmarsh Library and Barnsley Chronicle Bookshop tomorrow. (today – it’s rather late!)

Friday – Another sale, Whoop! Collected new specs. Colected bread order ( long overdue – it’s all gluten free and had been delayed due to an oven breakdown). Took some bits to charity shop, popped in Iceland and bought more ice cream/biscuits/desserts that should have – only went in for peas and green beans!

First Friday in month is steak night. A  good meal for the end of this busy week. Now time to chill for the weekend.

The importance of learning rhyming skills

When children start to learn to read, they need to learn so many rules for the written word. Hopefully, by now they have already been introduced to many books which have been read to them. It’s not random chance that so many children’s books feature rhyme. We all have our favourites. But the classic of all rhyming books has to be Chicken Licken.  So the sky is falling down and Chicken Licken is going to to tell the King. And on the way she meets  Henny Penny, Cocky Locky, Turkey Lurkey, etc… What a great collection of rhyming pairs! On reflection I think Foxy Loxy managed to pull a wicked stunt and eat them all. I may have to review whether this is still suitable reading.

So you learn the word Cat, and then Mat.  It’s so simple, then, to see thAT sAT and fAT have the same ending and sound the same – only the beginning changed.

That’s why Frogs sit on Logs, and why Humpty’s last name is Dumpty. It’s all a reading skill.

Children love rhyme.  Finding rhyming words together with your child is great fun. Try a rhyming bingo game, or “Rhyme Robbers” game. Great for age 3,4, 5 yr olds.

Example of my daughter bringing rhyme to the table:

Daughter, age about 5, eating a piece of cake: “What rhymes with cake”

Me: “Bake, Make, for goodness Sake” (a phrase I would use often for minor irritations)

Daughter: “Why did you say ‘for goodness sake?’ ”

Me: “Because Sake rhymes with Cake”


Daughter: “So what rhymes with Bloody Hell?”




Poems for any occasion

Contact me if you would like a verse for a special person or an occasion. Births, birthdays, weddings etc. Funny or sentimental.