Catch me at Killermont Primary

I’ll be popping along to Killermont Primary School‘s Spring Fayre on Saturday 21 May. For a bit of fun, I’m hosting a stall. If you’re going, come and say hello.

It’s a chance to return to my old stomping ground of Bearsden, where I spent my teenage years and a couple more either side.

When you’re used to hearing the name of a place you tend to stop thinking about the meaning of the name. I’ve heard ‘Killermont’ many a time, but I’ve never thought about why it’s called that. Until now. Was it a dangerous hill? If so, why? I will try to find out and report back!

Oh, and if you’re thinking, Look at that marble playground they have a Killermont, let me assure you that it’s actually West of Scotland rain that’s causing the sheen.

Gryffe High School kicks off my World Book Day week

I know, I know…it’s a day that’s become a week!

And what a great start it got off to at Gryffe High School in Houston, Renfrewshire.

The wonderfully enthusiastic librarian, Christine Kerr, had organised for me to speak to S1 in the school’s theatre – one of those with a steep rake, which I love because a) I can see everyone easily, b) it makes for a good atmosphere and c) it saves on my voice…and I’m going to need my voice this week!

As always, we ended with a competition. Usually there’s 1 winner. This time there were 3! And one of those was a teacher. (Keeps pupils on their toes!)

Apparently cries of ‘Yabadabadoo’ were to be heard down the school corridors for the rest of the afternoon. Heh heh, I can’t imagine who could have inspired those…

World Book Day/Week

WBD2015_yellow_rightupTime flies and my diary fills…all the more so in the run-up to World Book Day on Thursday 3 March 2016. So here’s a further update (accurate at the time of posting) on my availability for author sessions around that time.

w/c 22 Feb – I can be anywhere in Central Scotland on the Mon, Tues & Wed. Can’t do the Thurs. Can do anywhere in or around London on Fri; and from Greater London down to Lewes on Sat and possibly Sun.

w/c 29 Feb (yes, it’s a leap year)– Limited availability Mon & Tues in DSC06688South/West/Central Scotland. Wed: can do 1 session in/around Edinburgh in the afternoon. Thurs (World Book Day): sorry, fully booked. Fri, Sat & Sun: available

w/c 7 Mar – available Mon, Thur & Fri.

w/c 14 Mar – Available Mon morning, Tues & Wed in Scotland. Can’t do Thurs. Fri: can do pretty much anywhere from London northwards.

You’ll find full details of what I talk about in schools elsewhere on this site.


Solar eclipse, 20 March 2015

Star Trek was strange. ‘Space: the final front ear.’ Why would people have ears at the front? Very odd.

But space is fascinating. And it will be extra specially fascinating at about 0930 on Friday 20 March, because that’s when the next full solar eclipse will take place.

In the UK we’ll get a partial eclipse, but it will still be over 80% throughout the UK, and over 90% in Central Scotland. Go even further north, e.g. to Lewis or Harris, and you’ll be in the 95% zone. Exciting stuff.

9781905537136It was a little corner of space that inspired me to write the 4th LEE book, Lee on the Dark Side of the Moon. And I rather fancy the idea of being in a school to talk about that book on the day of the eclipse. I’ll be able to wheel out my Moon facts!

Here’s a good Moon (and solar eclipse) fact to start with. Why do we get perfect eclipses? Why doesn’t the sun peep round the edges, or why doesn’t the Moon look twice as large as the Sun? The answer is that the Sun’s diameter is 400 times that of the Moon; but the Sun is also exactly 400 times further from the Earth than is the Moon. In short, the 400s cancel out each other.

So, let me know if you’d be interested in a visit. It would ‘eclipse’ all others!

You may groan now…