Category Archives: Book Fairs, Talks and Festivals

My PechaKucha – WWW

My PechaKucha – a World Without Words

“It’s easy,” Jacques said, ” Just 20 slides, 20 seconds a slide.”

NO, IT ISN’T FOLKS! It is actually really hard to deliver. It’s easy to write what you want to say, but then all of a sudden when the first slide slips into place, your brain has a brain fart and everything goes blank!

What does PechaKucha mean?

Well simply small chat, chit-chat.

Who invented the format?

The presentation format was devised by Astrid Klein and Mark Dytham of Klein Dytham architecture and keeps participants to a fast, concise format when delivering their talks. The first PechaKucha Night was held in Tokyo in their gallery/lounge/bar/club/creative kitchen, SuperDeluxe, in February 2003.

What have I let myself in for? Wish me luck tonight…


South African Children’s Book Fair

Yes I was there, at the South African Children’s Book Fair last weekend and look who came to visit: Arthie Moore, Jan Roberts and Frayne Mathijs. Plus I met a very special Gogo (grandmother), Jabulile who runs a reading club for children in Johannesburg Central – Dobsonville and the CNA characters.

South African Children’s Book Fair

The South African Children’s Book Fair.

I can’t believe I will be presenting a workshop – The Bully is not Your Friend – at this event in only my second year as an author. I even have the passes to prove it, ha,ha,ha.

So if you are passing the Dome this weekend, come along and support us, I will be there with fellow authors Evadeen Brickwood, Robbie Cheadle and Soraya Hendricks, plus of course our behind the scenes lady Kim Hunter.

THE BULLY IS NOT YOUR FRIEND – Too many young people are bullied every day, but there are some things they can do to make themselves less of a target for the bully. I will be talking as detailed below:

8th June  – 9am – Seminar Room 1 and again at Ipm Seminar Room 2

9th June – 1pm – Seminar Room 1 and 3pm Nomvuyo Vuvu Biyana Workshop Area 2

So looking forward to seeing you there


This is the week that was… part3 – Embrace Head Teacher’s Conference

This is the week that was part 3

Oh my goodness what a week, and it ended on an amazing two-day high at the St Benedict’s Embrace Conference where I was giving a workshop and launching the Schools Reading Road Show (SRRS) a concept I came up with about 6 months ago when I decided that although I was already visiting schools and presenting my Polly’s Piralympics Series, based on anti-bullying and it’s Ok to be different, I felt it needed more. That more, was more authors to accompany me into the schools I get invited to. The idea for a Reading Roadshow just seemed the natural progression and we launched last Friday at the Conference.

So a massive thank you to Evadeen, Corne, Soraya, Robbie, Fatuma, Kim, Sabina. You ladies were fantastic, whether helping out at the stand of with the workshop, we made our mark.


Thank You St Benedict’s for giving us this platform to engage with head teachers from all over the country. It was a valuable subject, that although made people uncomfortable needs to be discussed and you were brave enough to discuss it.

What a week that was… part 1

What a week that was just so jam-packed full.

Wednesday saw me talking to the Johannesburg New Dawn Rotary Club at the Parkview Golf Club at 7 AM!!! That time doesn’t exist in the UK other than for breakfast (Ha, ha, ha). I thoroughly enjoyed speaking to this amazing group of people, who do so much for Charities across the length and breadth of the country and would like to thank Debbie Smith for her invitation and Carol Stier for looking after me on the day – Thank you, ladies.

#PollysPiralympicsSeries, #SRRSSA

Yesterday was a mixed day…

Yesterday was a mixed day. I met a South African legend and said goodbye to a Greenford and District Scout legend (I have paid tribute to RJ on facebooks and will now take time to reflect on my meeting last night with one of South Africa’s own.) Here I am with Brian Mitchell – helping to raise funds for SRRS (Schools Reading Road Show.)


Brian didn’t have the best of starts in life, sent away to boarding school at just 6 years old, times were tough for a nipper. Then his mum manages to get him to Jeppe, but books weren’t his forte and a few scraps mapped out his future – he started to box.

He was an amateur from 9-19 when he joined the army. He became Defence Force Champion in 1981 and turned Pro. He went on to become WBA Junior Lightweight Champion in SA and in 1986 aged just 25 he took a bash at the World Title against Alfredo Layne.

“It was all thanks to Sol Kerzner, I’m not sure how he did it, back in those days,” said Mitchell, “But he got the fight here to South Africa and I’m not sure how, but I won.”

The WBA wanted to strip him of the title because of the sanctions on sport in the country at the time, and after a court battle they eventually allowed him to keep the title, but he would have to defend his title on foreign soils.

He went on to remain undefeated in 13 fights as WBA Champion and when asked which was his hardest opponent he said unhesitantly Jose Rivera.

He stated that his proudest moments were meeting the likes of Princess Charleen of Monaco, Silvester Stalone, Mike Tyson and Sugar Ray Leonard. But the one that touched him most was when President Nelson Mandela flew him down to Cape Town to have a personal audience with him.

“Thanks to boxing, it was a great journey.”

He is the only South African to date to have entered the Boxing Hall of Fame (2009).

So there you have it two legends in one day.



Helping to change the 78% of grade 4’s who have no basic reading skills in SA


I will be conducting a workshop on READING – THE DRIVING FORCE TO CHANGE at the above event at St Benedicts College in the 16th March 2018.

Open to delegates in Education and Private Industry interested in seeing a transformation for the future that will embrace our diversity and will lay the foundations for our youth of today to be ready for the workplace of tomorrow.

If interested in Sponsoring Books to be donated as part of our Schools Reading Road Show, or in attending the conference please contact me.