It’s the little things…

With embarking on yet another mammoth project, this time with Kenilworth Books and multiple schools in Kenilworth, again come the sleepless nights, the constant ideas floating around in my head and the excitement of pulling together another huge masterpiece.

I don’t think anyone fully understands the incredible amount of work involved in these creations, from the initial concept, scanning the hundreds of pieces of artwork, and the designing, editing and creating the masterpiece itself.  It takes many hours, but again and again, the results are stunning (even if I do say so myself).

The work is described as ‘incredible’, ‘inspirational’ and ‘what an amazing opportunity for the children.’ and these things help drive my motivation.

But, there a few little things above all that keeps my passion for this going and during my author event this week at Kenilworth Books these are a couple of examples;

  • It’s when a 12 year old girl hands me a piece of her artwork that she wants included into the Kenilworth Book project.  She explains that her passion is to be an illustrator.
  • Its when a mother comes in with her two young sons who are so incredibly excited that they have done multiple pieces of art and have been late for school most days last week because they were working on the pictures (my apologies to the school).

I’m continuously amazed by the enthusiasm and excitement that all children have when they realise that they could be part of a very special project; the creation of a real book.


Victorian to WWII in one sentence… Er…

As another school project reaches its final phases of publication, I consider the journey that I went through in order to construct it.

Harry Bishop and the Time Traveller was the result of the school instruction that they wanted to do something based on the history topics that each of the 147 children at the school had been learning.

“Ok” I thought to myself, “this should be fairly straight forward.”

But it wasn’t. There was just one issue. The classes were each learning about different eras in history and there was relatively little in common between the eras (Tudor, Victorian and WWII) in which to weave a story.

On the 1st day workshops with the children, it quickly became apparent to me that this could become a major stumbling block and I was concerned that the linkages would be too weak to weave the story.

On the 2nd day workshop with the ‘focus group’, the children and I batted around ideas, brainstormed, acted out and asked why would Harry do that, what would he say, how would he feel and then suddenly everything fell into place.

I will never underestimate how children are able to make linkages between seemingly unconnected events (how do you link Victorian Era with WWII in one sentence???) and by bouncing ideas around with them we inevitably come up with new thinking, new ways and new reasons.

I am incredibly proud of and grateful for the children of Bishops Itchington Primary School for their enthusiasm, their friendliness and the huge smiles that I get whenever I walk into the school.

This project was another big one, but my goodness the results are stunning.

Harry Bishop and the Time Traveller will be available in early December 2016.



Why women talk a lot

Why women talk a lot.

My husband complains that I talk a lot

Actually, that I talk all the time,

I talk over TV programmes and films

I can’t help it, I like my voice, it is mine

Now I feel for all this talking

That there is indeed a reason,

And it is not to do with moonlight,

Tides, stars or season.

The female species is a clever thing,

And we use our mouths to vocalise our intellect

Now for my humble husband who keeps his hidden,

This is something he will never get.

You see, when I point out the obvious

I am checking that my husband has seen it too

He grumbles and grunts that he has

When I know he really hasn’t a clue.

Now the good old telephone is the worst offender,

Five minute phone calls, turn to hours

And with exciting mobile technology,

I can have chats on toilets, in baths or even showers

But alas, for all this talking, I must admit

There is just one person to blame,

And that is my dearest mother,

For she is exactly the same.

Written by Lee Sterrey

March 2010

Updated October 2016

“We will get through life and we will win”