First up, I was delighted yesterday to receive an award for A Ring Through Time, which has just won the Society of Women Writers Biennial Book Award in the Junior/YA Fiction category. A great celebration for a book that’s close to my heart. It’s set on idyllic Norfolk Island with a flashback to the island’s brutal colonial past – but there’s a love story too, so it’s a fictional history with quite a dash of romance! The guest speaker at our lunch was the delightful Pamela Freeman who took us through the stages of reinventing an old story that has now become her Princess Betony series, with illustrations marking her progress. It’s fascinating (and some comfort) to know that books can have more than one life!! And I know that my granddaughter is just going to love Princess Betony and the Unicorn. The fun continued into the night with our Children’s Book Council northern branches Christmas party. Our committee worked really hard to organise this and it was a huge success, not least because we had some wonderful guest speakers: Children’s Laureate Alison Lester and illustrator Sarah Davis. The Q & A with Aleesah Darlison and bookshop guru Paul Macdonald was fun (and illuminating) as was the quiz based around Alison’s books – and well done Belinda Murrell for knowing all the answers! Meantime I’m still coping with jetlag after five wonderful weeks away in Israel, Jordan and Europe – but that’s a topic for another blog, I think!!