A FORMER Beacon reporter and Raglan school governor has just finished a book she describes as “an accidental creation”.
Jenny Sullivan’s latest book ‘The School Owl’, is a timely tale of Hallowe’en that sees the village witch joy-riding on her broomstick and colliding in mid-air with a hunting Barn Owl.
The idea came about during lockdown when she hadn’t been able to visit Welsh schools to carry on her writing workshops, so she had been doing online sessions for free.
Cwmclydach Primary in the Rhondda Valley was one of them and she promised to write a short story for them.
“Then I discovered the owls in the school roof and imagination and witch magic kicked in and it turned into a short novel with all proceeds going to World of Words” she told the Beacon.
Jenny was born and raised in Victoria Park, Cardiff and left school aged 15 without any qualifications whatsoever.
She worked as PA for three successive Directors for Wales: first the Board of Trade, then DTI.
During her time in Raglan Primary where she was a governor at the school (and school reading helper-outer), she managed to earn an MA and PhD at Cardiff as well as being involved with St Cadoc’s Church. She taught a creative writing class at the RFD College as well as others in the Cardiff area.
Married with three girls, who all went to Monmouth Comprehensive School, she now spends her time in Brittany, where she has lived since 2004 and returns to Wales two or three times a year to visit schools and libraries to help children – and teachers, during twilight sessions and INSET days – discover the joys of creative writing.
She wrote her first book ‘The Magic Apostrophe’ in 1994 – still in print - and she been shortlisted eight times for the Tir na n-Og Award, more than any other Welsh author.
Jenny has now written 15 books in The Magic Apostrophe series and is currently re-writing the first six books for republication in omnibus editions and has authored two adult historical novels about Owain Glyndwr.
She is a passionate supporter of the ‘World of Words Wales’ (WOW), a non-profit children’s literacy and well-being charity and has dedicated her latest book to raise funds for the charity. The book features Cwmclydach school both on its cover and in its contents with the first names of the pupils being used in the text.
“I’m proud to support the charity “World of Words Wales” she said, “Rob Jones, who runs it, offers through WOW a well-being programme using literacy and language to build confidence and self-esteem amongst Welsh children.”
Jenny has played an active role with WOW, leading writing plus Q & A sessions.
Her publisher (Gomer/Pont) stopped publishing a year or so ago so she’s finding Amazon Createspace very useful!
If any school wishes to know more about employing WOW please call 07981 633361 or email [email protected]
The book ‘The School Owl’ is available on Amazon for a nominal fee.