Thursday, 28 September 2017


I was involved first time round in Stories for Homes - you can find out all about the project at the website.

I'm also involved in the second volume - my online anthology story, Potato Soup, as well as some other stonkingly good reads - can be found here.

But the real reason for blogging? The ebook is published TODAY!! (Follow this shortlink to find it on Amazon in any territory. The paperback will follow in November.)

You will not regret purchasing this anthology. I was privileged to proofread it and, dare I say it? I think volume 2 is even better than volume 1. And I'm not the only one who thinks it's a fabulous read. Here's what some other folk have to say about it:

Emma Darwin, author of The Mathematics of Love, commented on the quality of writing in the anthology as: “A cornucopia of witty, tragic, elegant, raw, heart-warming and terrifying stories that take the idea of Home, play with it as only truly talented writers can, and all to help those who have no home at all."

Joanne Harris, author of Chocolat, said: “Stories give our imaginations a home. It's good to see them helping to give people shelter in the real world, too...” reflecting the connection between the immediacy of housing crisis and the stories people tell about their lives around and within it.

Cally Taylor, author of Home for Christmas, said: "A home is more than just a house. It's the people within it, the lives they lead and the stories they tell. Everyone deserves a home."

Julie Cohen, author of Dear Thing and Together, wrote that "Stories for Homes is proof of the power of literature and stories to make a positive difference in people's lives. This collection has heart and soul."

And Tor Udall, author of A Thousand Paper Birds, observed that: "Many of our greatest stories pivot around the idea of home. From Honer's Odyssey to the Wizard of Oz, we will always tell tales of losing and finding 'home' - be that our childhood, a place, a lover, or our core self. These stories tap into our need to belong, to feel, simply, that we have a right to be here. Today, when Brexit threatens to divide families - and refugees, the homeless and the poor are denied a place in this world - this luminous collectionof stories is searingly relevant."

And a few more folk will be telling you what they think too, as SfH2 has begun and will continue to do, a blog tour over the coming days.

Why? Why did so many people come together to create another anthology to raise funds (volume 1 raised £3,000) for the housing and homelessness charity, Shelter?

Anthology co-editor Debi Alper put it like this: “Access to a safe and secure home is a human right - one that thousands of people are denied in 21st century Britain. This world class anthology is a good deed in a very naughty world.”

And Sally Swingewood, who also edited the collections, commented: “The Stories for Homes collections would not be possible without the generosity of a huge number of volunteers. By working together we have produced a book which will not only delight but also help address one of the biggest humanitarian crises facing modern society. In a world where migration, identity and belonging are in the news daily we have a duty to help everyone have a home in which they feel safe and settled. Stories for Homes is one way we can be part of the solution”

Jacqueline Ward, one of the contributors, explained her reasons for getting involved in this Huffington Post article.

And me? Why did I do it? I've never been homeless - I've always been lucky enough to have a roof over my head. I could easily sit in Maison Squidge and ignore what's going on in the rest of the world. But I can't. I hurt when I see people living on the streets, or forced to live in unsuitable accommodation. I cry when I see tragedies like Grenfell Towers, to whom the victims and survivors of which the anthology is dedicated...

I'm human. I want to make a difference. So when I've been blessed with the means to help, I will, whether that means physically (buying a pasty and a coffee), financially (through donating to charities), or through my writing.

That's why I do it. Because I'm a tiny drop in a massive ocean of good that WILL make a difference - this time, through the work of Shelter who help those affected by the housing crisis in the UK.

Please, if you are concerned about those who struggle to find somewhere to call 'home', buy the book. Spread the word. And know that with every page you turn, every story about 'home' you read in this amazing collection, you're adding another drop to that ocean, because all proceeds go to Shelter.

Thank you xx  

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