ABOUT ME

All material on this blog is original and copyright.  However, should you wish to use any of it, please just get in touch….gwen@gwengrant.co.uk
And my web page is at  http://www.gwengrant.co.uk

My book ‘PRIVATE-KEEP OUT!’ is now published as a PENGUIN VINTAGE CHILDREN’S CLASSIC.This book was first published in 1978 by Heinemann.  I wanted to capture the spirit and humour of the place where I grew up as a child.  This book has been called ‘The funniest children’s book ever written’ by Lucy Mangan, a Guardian columnist.

Growing older and having survived cancer at 40, a long time ago, certainly focuses the mind on the future and I was very aware of this when I wrote the poem FUTURE TENSE.  I’ve always loved writing and still remember the excitement of the first longer piece of work I did.  It was very experimental and I was certain it wouldn’t get published.  It probably wouldn’t have but one of the small magazines, who did such great work for new writers, took that piece and many others. But that wasn’t all they did.  With a generous kindness, they would often point out where I could improve.

My first book was a picture book, MATTHEW AND HIS MAGIC KITE, but after that, I started wanting to capture the humour and interest of where I lived, so PRIVATE-KEEP OUT came next followed by KNOCK AND WAIT and ONE WAY ONLY.  They’re not biographies because all I wanted to do was to catch the spirit of those times.

It would be good if everyone wrote an account of their lives so their times are not lost. So many valuable histories unwritten and unread.

When I was a girl, I loved the American writer, BETTY MACDONALD, with her very funny accounts of her family and her life in the 1940’s.  But NORMAN MAILER’s, ‘THE NAKED AND THE DEAD’ opened a new world of writing to me when I stumbled across it in the subscription library I belonged to at fifteen. ERNEST HEMINGWAY’s ‘CHRISTMAS IN PARIS 1923’, was so sublime and beautiful it was a torch for me, and the Toronto Star Weekly must have published it hardly believing their luck.  I wonder if there still is a Toronto Star Weekly?

I have just received copies of THE PUFFIN BOOK OF GHOSTS AND GHOULS in which my story SPRING-HEELED JACK appears.  I wrote this story about 30years ago and it’s been published many times since.  I love the illustration by Nick Harris, which accompanies my story.  ISBN : 978-0-241-35302-8

 

 

2 thoughts on “ABOUT ME

  1. Hello. Myself and my daughter Heidi (9) have been searching the internet together tonight to try and track down the real Gwen Grant. I’m hoping this is you. We have finished reading Private Keep Out together – one of my favourite books as a girl. It had us in fits of laughter together and was a lovely experience to read with her. We are trying to find Knock and Wait but it is proving difficult. Will it be put on kindle ever? Or republished? We live in Notts too, is that where the story is set?

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  2. Thank you for your nice e-mail and yes, this is me! I’ve undertaken to try and get KNOCK AND WAIT ready for republication. There is also the third book in the trilogy, ONE WAY ONLY. I’m also trying to type that up again but it all takes ages, so although I’m going as fast as I can, it could be a couple of months before it is completed. I’m so glad you both found PRIVATE funny and it made you laugh. I live in Nottinghamshire so, yes, you are right – they are all set in this county. Thank you again for contacting me.
    All best wishes,
    Gwen Grant.

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