Diamonds in the Darkness

We all have our ups and downs, but it's a proud boast of we creative arty authory types that we like to do it better than most.

It's certainly been the case for this specimen of late - family issues of a kind which tend to strike at this time of life have been causing me troubles. 

However!  This blog isn't to be a wailing lament of my bruised soul, you'll doutbless be relieved to hear.  It's about my best efforts at finding a way through.

One of the favourites is indulging in the things I love.  And I was fortunate enough to be scheduled to do some teaching of the writing thing with youngsters.

To be frank, I wasn't sure I should go ahead with it.  I was hardly feeling sparkly, enthusiastic and entertaining.  But I hate letting people down, particularly children, and so on I went.

And was delighted - and more - that I did so. 

Simon otterton primary.jpg

I love the looks on the faces of the youngsters at Otterton Primary School - for once it seems like I'm being interesting, or maybe even entertaining!

And the class I took at Drake's Primary, in East Budleigh, were equally engaged and charming. 

Simon Budleigh school.jpg

It was the most wonderful, uplifting day.  The title of the session was The Secrets of Storytelling and we played lots of games, and had plenty of fun, to try to illustrate the simple joy of words.

I came away feeling so much better.  Proud of helping the youngsters to appreciate books and stories, but perhaps more importantly at that point - as if there was life and hope in the world, rather than the darkness of the opposite end of existence which had been surrounding me.

It was also a great pleasure meeting the staff, a very dedicated and talented bunch, and many thanks to all the youngsters too for playing along with my strange ways of teaching.  Keep writing those stories!

The day reminded me of this, and very welcome it was too -

There are always diamonds in the darkness.  It's just a question of finding them.

(photos courtesy of the Sidmouth Herald and Exmouth Journal - thanks for both papers for your kind support.)