Today is the first day of K-Fest 2018 in Killorglin, Ireland. For anyone who happens to be in the neighbourhood, I’d pop by if I were you. It is a colourful gathering of creative people showing the world – well, at least part of it – what they have been doing artwise. I can’t make it this year, which makes me really sad, but hey, there’s always next year.
In 2015 I was there and met the wonderful Dublin based artist Kuze. She was there with a selection of her work. In fact, I think she designed the festival’s flyer for that year. She and I got to talk and I told her how some of paintings immediately brought stories into my mind. We kept in touch and I put some of the stories to paper. Here today, in honour of K-Fest and how it gets you to meet amazing people from all over, I am posting one of stories for you to read. If you get a chance, do check out Kuze’s work. It is downright magical. She is also on Facebook.
Below you will find the first paragraph of the story. To download the whole story, click here. This will open a page where you can download a pfd file. Most browsers will do this automatically, so check your download folder if nothing seems to happen. This pdf you can print, but also read on a tablet of e-reader. Enjoy… Continue reading
Sometimes prose just doesn’t suffice. Sometimes you need poetry to wrap your head around the world. Last weekend something happened that required poetry badly. Here’s a poem for a poet. Continue reading
I like presents! Not only to get, but also to give… Today I’ve got a present for all those children who like a good story. It is about Bing and Bibi’s granny. Her name is Granny Thea and she is quite an extraordinary grandma. And that is putting it mildly. Is your grandma always calm, sensible and predictable? Well, not this gran. She is always up to stuff that makes her family sigh deeply. Like she did a while back. Bing and Bibi found their grandma on top of her wardrobe that day. What she was doing there? Read this story and you’ll know! Continue reading
This week I finally did it: I cancelled my Facebook account. I was very late in joining the FB legion, but – once in – I was in completely. I collected friends, groups, pages and events. I was fully enjoying virtual life. But somewhere deep inside it didn’t feel right. Why did I stop doing all these things I used to do? I used to make jewellery, work in my garden, write an awful lot, spend a lot time outside both on my own and with my horse. It seemed that it took me a lot of effort to get myself to do these things nowadays. I found myself more and more behind my screen, peering at the world as it was presented to me.
Honestly, I was doing quite okay, still had plenty of downtime. I didn’t have Facebook on my phone (on purpose) and when the computer was turned off I managed to steer clear of social media. Maybe it was also the amount of time I saw others spend on social media, which really made me realise the damage it does. It made me see how addicting Facebook is. It is made to be that way, consciously, to get people to return as often as possible. To make them feel like they need it. Continue reading
I never asked her, but I can imagine that Maria had plenty of moments when she wished she’d never promised my mother to take care of me. I wouldn’t blame her. For these first months with me must have been horrendous.
I cried incessantly and, although I was – and still am – only a little fellow, you wouldn’t think so judging by the ear-piercing noise I was able to make. The ISPCA turned up at the Lazy Elves’ doorstep on several occasions, alerted by worried neighbours who complained of sounds of pigs being slaughtered slowly. Continue reading
In the prologue on the story of Roundy Fatmouse I told you how I met Roundy. His godmother Maria asked me to take him under my wing so he fulfill the role he was to play in the world. Below you find his memoires. And logically they start at the beginning: his birth.
The story of my birth is a rather sad one, so I’m only going to tell it to you once. My mother was a bright blue ball of wool. She was a formidable lady who was completely selfless. A rather rare find in this day and age, I would say.
She was always willing to help out people in need. Become a scarf to keep their necks warm. Become socks so their feet would be nice and covered.
At one point all this helping out was starting to wear her a bit thin. She realised that she couldn’t go on without fulfilling her own deepest wish. Continue reading
Even though you have worked really hard to create a book and you know that were really pleased with it the moment that you sent it into the world, it is always great to hear that others agree. Especially when those others are highly rated in the literary world. You can therefore imagine that I was on cloud nine when I read the review in the Netherlands – the one that NBD Biblion publishes – and the reviewer turned out to be raving enthousiastic about the book. Below you can find the translation: Continue reading
Five a clock in the morning and I’m wide awake. Both physically and mentally completely switched on. I do not feel startled or anything. I am just very, very, very awake and alert.
It happens to me every now and then. I wake up with a feeling of urgency, of importance. I realise that I had an epiphany. Not the kind where you see the holy Mary at the end of your bed (now that would give me a fright!), but the kind that you recognise as being crucial in your life and choices. Most of the time these kind of awakenings do not leave room for any going back to sleep. Instead feel pressed into action, like this morning. Continue reading
The story of Roundy Fatmouse is a typical example of how an apparently ordinary event can lead to a great adventure in my head. Below you’ll find the prologue to this story.
Roundy’s godmother Maria and I have touched upon how great it would be if Roundy’s extraordinary story would end up in a real book. And who knows, it could easily happen!
Last Saturday I met a little mouse on the streets of Tralee. He was there with his godmother Maria. Maria was basically looking for the right person to send him into the world with. According to her he had this important task having to do with saving the world or something like that.
When Maria heard that my family and I were going to be travelling a lot in the near future and that I was a writer, she figured we would be an excellent match and she proposed that I would take this little mouse with me. My son, who was with me at the time and was already quite smitten with the charming blue fellow, completely agreed.
When I was about 18, a family member who was at my birthday commented on the appearance of one of the other guests. I remember the exact words, but they don’t translate well, so the gist will have to do. She basically said, loudly, that the person in question had the fattest legs she’d ever seen. I couldn’t believe my ears and, shocked, exclaimed that she was so out of line. The family member then asked the these days so often heard rhetorical question: ‘Am I not allowed to express my opinion?’ Although her question was rhetorical, I gave her an answer anyway. It was a clear and indignant ‘No! You are not! This is not an opinion, this is a thoughtless insult.’ Continue reading