Well, it's been a while since I've managed to blog and with very good reason. A fully booked term 2 touring Devon was exhausting. Eight weeks on the road that seemed longer. I had the pleasure of working in some fantastic schools and with amazing young writers and very enthusiastic teachers. The tour was a complete success. I'm back home now for a couple of weeks before I start again, this time covering Somerset during terms three and four.

There are three books being published during the first term of the new year. Two are for younger readers and the seventh Walking with book. exciting times! I'm also working on, simultaneously, two young adult books and an adult book, all of which are in the final stages of editing. 2019 looks likely to be my best publishing year to date because it's not stopping there. More on this at a later  later.

I think as this year comes to a close it is appropriate to thank everybody who has invited me into their schools, everybody who has helped make the tours possible and everybody who has continually supported the journey I'm on. Also a special word of thanks to the people who read my books prior to editing, for their thoughts, advice and support and my amazing artists who help bring my books to the attention of browsers.

All that's left to say is that I wish everybody a happy new year, be safe, be lucky and most of all keep reading.



Remembering in Plymouth

Finding myself far from home, I couldn't have found a more fitting place to pay my respects to the fallen. A swathe of humanity moved sedately through the town centre of Plymouth, as if led by an invisible Pied Piper. I felt myself almost carried along as I was caught up in the relentless footsteps. People of all races, all ages and all walks of life moved together in a synchronous mass. Some were in uniform and some were not, some were clearly old enough to have remembered either the second world war, or lived in the aftermath of it, while others were too young to have any real understanding of war and what our men and women faced at such times. Medals were worn proudly and backs were straightened as we approached the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month. Thousands gathered on the Hoe and stood side by side united in the single cause of remembering those who had fallen. For a hundred years now we have celebrated the end of the first world war and remembered those that fell never to see the homes they left behind. 

But this wasn't just about remembering those from the great war but remembering those from all the many conflicts that have followed. I stood amongst them and waited for the minutes of silence to begin, aware that as the time drew ever nearer the sound of voices gradually became less and less until the boom of a cannon silenced the crowd and stilled their movement. There was a sense of great pride and grief for all those who died and yet one of joy too for the freedom bequeathed to us by their ultimate sacrifice. The great gun boomed again and the silence wasn't broken straight away, the murmur of voices returning slowly. A few drops of rain fell at the precise moment the gun had fired, a few raindrops, or God's tears shed for those lost, a poignant thought for a poignant moment?

For another thirty minutes I stayed along with the majority, joining in with the prayers of thanks and glad to be in the company of those with similar thoughts. Surely there is nothing more powerful when humanity congregates in this way and stands side by side as one. One body, one mind and one soul. If only this peaceful harmony could only be harnessed more just think of what might be achieved and what might never be repeated again.

They will never be forgotten


So for the past few days I've been hammered by the wind and now drowned by the rain. When your touring around the country then it doesn't get worse than this. I was looking forward to going to Corfe Castle today but that is a no go area for the moment. The roads were flooded in places this morning and I've taken refuge in McDonalds to do a little writing. It's still raining now and it doesn't look like stopping anytime soon. 

I've visited some lovely schools this week and met some super teaching staff and kids alike. My thanks to each of the following schools for making me so welcome. Wyke Primary Gillingham, St Mary and Joseph Wool, The Priory School in Christchurch and Bere Regis school. In each school I set writing challenges and taught workshops to promote writing. Whilst a lot of things change from county to county, it seems the problems of underbugeting still pervade schools across the country and limit the chances of children meeting people who specialise in something different.

Another week of the same looms ahead of me and I have to say that it's a side of my work that I really enjoy. Even though I retired from teaching three years ago, it's still lovely to do the odd bit here and there. This week I'm going to Bridport, Wool and Weymouth too. I've been to Weymouth before and am looking forward to revisiting. I hope the weather improves too so that I can od the tourist thing at the weekends.

Happy Reading Steve


Catching up

It's been a while since I've found time and internet to catch up with blogging. i've just finished a five and a half week tour of primary schools in Dorset and the schedule has been demanding. It's been a real adventure though camping around surely one of the most beautiful counties of the country. Twenty schools booked me and I enjoyed every single one of them with staff and pupils being among the most accommodating I've come across. To each of those schools I send a heart warmed thanks for having me and giving me some wonderful new memories to take away.

There's no stopping now though because I'm just about to embark on a seven week tour of Devon and I'm booked solid throughout the term. So that's me tied up until Christmas.

Although I've spent many evenings without being able to access the internet on my laptop, editing and writing continues on a daily basis, although the main focus is on the editing. There are several new books imminent for publication either side of Christmas including two new series' for KS1, and the latest Walking with book. The first adult book is also imminent and should be available after Christmas. Hopefully if the editing continues as it has been then there could be as many as ten books published next year including two more adult books and two new series for young adults. 

Keep an eye out on the social media sites for some bargain offers on my two main series. The Walking with books and The Navajo Spirit books will be available at discount prices for multiple purchases.

I'll do my best to blog a little more regularly and share my adventures but it's not easy out there to find internet especially when many of the schools I visit are right out in the sticks.

Happy reading 


What's Going On

It's been a while since I blogged and suddenly the countdown to the release of the third Navajo book stopped. Apologies for that. To put it simply, I'm still awaiting the stock to support the promotion. That doesn't mean that I'm idle at the moment. Far from it! This years touring has started well in the heart of the beautiful county of Dorset and already I am experiencing the beautiful countryside, the quaint sleepy villages and the stunning Jurassic coast line. This place is an explorers paradise with something to see at every turn of the road. The pace of life here is slower, people seem more content and smile more, or is that just me romanticising. Either way I have been to Dorset before and have always enjoyed the life here and this time, although the county remains as I remembered from before I'm having much more contact with the locals. Where I am at the moment I am just a few miles from Devon, Somerset and Wiltshire and have stepped across the borders several times already. 

I finished drafting the last few chapters of another adult novel the other day and the pleasure from completing it was pretty cool. It's the sixty-third book I've written and I'm constantly amazed at where the stories come from. This one, in particular has no links at all to my own life and experiences. Currently, during the evenings I am editing a number of books at the same time. I need to reduce the number I have completed that are not published yet. But like everything else, it's a time related issue, especially when I'm in school most days. For the last two weeks I have had a little run of smaller schools that affords me a little more time in each class and allows me to challenge and entertain the children further. Each school so far visited has given me lovely memories to take away and I have been wowed at the friendliness of staff and children alike. Thank you to all of those who have had me so far and I will continue to look forward to going to those I have not yet been to.

I have a rare day off tomorrow and thought I would go and visit the beautiful ruins of Corfe Castle . If I get some decent photo's, and believe me I struggle with this at times, I'll post them on face book and Instagram over the next few days along with others I have taken randomly here and there.

In the meantime happy reading 



C.S. Clifford

Author writing for all ages
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