Reviews

As a child, I was a voracious reader: I literally never had my nose out of a book and I read to my children from the earliest age.

With my children being young adults now, I have friends’ children to read to and it was to a 2 and 5-year old I read Foxy and Cinders.

I never speak to children in the ‘baby’ tone that is so common and have often felt that children’s books limit their vocabulary, or limit adventures to a moral high ground: not Foxy and Cinders.

The language is clear and mature. There is plenty of scope to mimic the characters’ voices theatrically, or for able children to read and enjoy it by themselves. There is a path – an arc in the book and yet each segment is a story within its own right – so you can return and continue from there, or come back another day to ask where Foxy will be going that day.

It was also good to see themes that are not ordinarily represented in children’s books, such as the graveyard scene. Dark touches like that have a hint of the Grimm Brothers – and yet Siusaidh softens this so that visiting Grandma at the graveyard, for instance, becomes natural instead of scary or bereft or life.

There is a depth to her writing that touches on the spiritual and I appreciate that as it is so often overlooked. However, it is purity and innocence that our children teach us, so we need it included in their books.

I love the mix of animals and people and it could be a metaphor for so many things, such as equality yet I never felt ‘preached at’.

Being born in the Year of the Dragon, I love dragons, so my only criticism would be that I thought the illustration of Cinders looked rather more like a cow. However, I will happily add this delight to the books I read to children.

Glynis Wozniak
Actor and Performer

Do you have a website/Facebook/Instagram link for your writing (hint hint)

http://www.foxyandcinders.com

Although the latter does not have very much at all on it!

www.youtube.com/siusaidhceanadach

 

 

 

Advertisements

being a newbie activist for the SNP

Thoughts on Election 2016 in Shettleston,

From a fairly new supporters eyes:

For the first time in my life I have become an activist within the SNP, it came at a time that I found myself with extra time on my hands wanting to do something to ‘make a difference’ do my bit for the community. Let me explain that my partner Piet had been active in the referendum but then had to take a back seat last year due to bad health and I was at home helping to nurse him back to health!

And very healthy he is now, regardless of some problems that could hit anyone at any age. So we found ourselves, especially me in a difficult position. Well enough to help but not well enough to walk up and down street delivering leaflets.

So what do do? Many years ago before I became a Nurse I did some work as a temp in offices, so I knew how to file stuff, how to work a pc and a printer and how to answer a phone, that became the answer for me. So I knew some of the team having met them briefly at branch meetings but that’s not to say I knew them, not like the friendship that grows when you spend hours and hours in each others company.

Did age make a difference? Not to the members of them team towards me, not my size or my disability seemed to make a difference. As a person born in England but having lived in Scotland since 1990, apart from a few months, I truly believe that Scotland should be an independent country and consider myself Scottish. This is my home, my children live here, my grandchildren, apart from two of them are all born here.

And hubby? Yesterday had him standing at a Polling Station and then driving folks around!

Home is truly where the heart is! And being an active member of a team is also heart-warming, right down to the toes!

So I would encourage anyone of any age, if you want to be part of a team, want to live in an independent Scotland, then go along to your branch meeting of your SNP, or your local Green party, offer a few hours each week and maybe more when the need occurs. Age, colour, disability, gender, sexual orientation or religion makes no difference!

To Be a Young Witch

It has taken several years for this book to be published and now it’s time to talk about the journey that led me to this point.

We run a Druidcraft group in Glasgow, Scotland and have members that over the years have had children and bring them along to the gatherings, some in the past have been very willing to join in and want to do small tasks.

This led me to wonder if I could write anything which would be a trainer for these youngsters, those who state they are ‘Witches’ even at primary age, ‘I’m a Pagan, a Witch’ I have heard from young lips.

So bit by bit this book, published by Whyte-Tracks Books, part of Millhouse publishing,  encourages the young people to follow the seasons, do different activates that link with the seasons. To celebrate the Moon and to keep a notebook of all their experiences and rituals, a book of shadows perhaps?

As I have done in the past, each step of the way there is a story to further express what the chapter is all about. So the book is part teaching and part fiction if you like?

The series of books I have had published with Moon Books, ‘Let’s Talk About’ http://www.moon-books.net/books/lets-talk-about-pagan-festivals-children went through nursery school age and up into school age. This book talks to older children, secondary age or maybe a year younger or older? Everyone is an individual.

So what comes next? I have gone back to younger age children and started to write a series of stories which are now religious or spiritual, they are the adventures of a young Fox and a fire breathing dragon who becomes his best friend. I hope to get a contract to publish these, especially as I have written them for ‘Cue and Review-Print Speaking to the Blind’ and they are available for the blind on the British Wireless for the Blind. So far there are 40 stories which would easily convert into a book with chapters.

Like all other authors I would love a contract for this but as yet I’ve not been successful.

Lots of things to write about, just don’t know what to write first?

Siusaidh Ceanadach