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Morecambe, Lancashire, United Kingdom
In the mornings I’m a Nursery Cook, the rest of the time a Writer. Been writing for decades: short stories, plays, poems, a sitcom and more recently flash fiction, Creative Writing MA at Lancaster Uni and now several novels. Been placed in competitions (Woman’s Own, Greenacre Writers and flashtagmanchester) and shortlisted in others (Fish, Calderdale, Short Fiction Journal). I won the Calderdale Prize 2011, was runner-up in the Ink Tears Flash Fiction Comp & won the Greenacre Writer Short Story Comp 2013. I have stories in Jawbreakers, Eating My Words, Flash Dogs Anthologies 1-3, 100 RPM and the Stories for Homes anthology. My work’s often described as ‘sweet’ but there’s usually something darker and more sinister beneath the sweetness. I love magical realism and a comedy-tragedy combination. My first novel, Queen of the World, is about a woman who believes she can influence the weather. I’m currently working on a 3rd: Priscilla Parker Reluctant Celebrity Chef. Originally from West Midlands, I love living by the sea in Morecambe, swimming, cycling, theatre, books, food, weather, sitcoms and LBBNML … SQUEEZE!

Tuesday, 22 May 2012


You were ten and half pounds when you were born. People kept calling you ‘bouncing’ and ‘bonny’. I told Auntie May on the phone so she knew you were a big baby but by the time her christening present arrived I could see they wouldn’t fit.
Lovely baby shoes. Neatly stitched in soft red and green leather. I remember Rosie and Izzy taking a shoe each out of the box. They turned them round in their hands. The leather gleamed. They decided the tiny stitches and intricate embroidery had been done by elves. This made them both giggle. You joined in from your cot as they dangled the magic elf-made shoes above your head. Maybe that was your first laugh.
Rosie and Izzy did try to get them on your feet. You just kicked the air and chuckled at them. Even when they tried putting socks on you they had the same trouble. Good job you had a Mum and two helpful sisters or you’d never have worn socks or shoes for more than a few seconds. Or hats. What you liked best was being on the rug, in your birthday suit. I know, I know. Don’t look at me like that.
The shoes were put back in their box. We could get good money for those, your Dad said. We advertised them for sale. Your sisters made a poster to go up in the shop. I said put ‘Brand New’ but the girls thought ‘Never Worn’ sounded better.
We sold them to someone further up the hill, a Mrs. What-was-her-name? No, of course I don’t expect you to know. The girls would remember. We’ll ask them later.
I know you’ve heard all this before, love, but I think of those shoes every time I come round here and trip over your size fourteen boots in the hallway.

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