Molly the sheep
Before I wrote ‘Fifty Fifty’ I wrote a collection of horrible-but-true stories for 8-12 year olds. I can remember exactly how it all started. We went on a weekend trip to a place called Beer (yep, it does exist – look it up!) with a big group of friends and their children, and on Saturday afternoon we ended up sitting on the beach telling stories. (It was too cold to swim – a couple of people tried, but they went blue.)
There was Martha, of course, and Nick, and Lydia, and Joe, and Niko and Lia, and Phoebe and Inez. There were some adults, too: Phil, and Ben, and James and Emma, and Mary, and Astrid and Steve. We all got into telling ‘disaster stories’ about ourselves or people we knew. The time when Nick had meningitis and nobody realised, and he wandered into his mum’s room and said ‘You know, I think I might need to go to hospital’. The time when Ben dozed off on a bus in India and woke up to find that the driver had fallen asleep at the wheel and the bus was rolling off the side of the road into a huge ditch (which explains the massive scar on Ben’s chin). The time Phil and I got arrested on a train in Italy and questioned and searched because the police thought we were drug smugglers. The time a rat died under our flooboards at home and what my dad did about it. And so on.
We had great fun. It went on for hours. Some of the stories were scary, and some of them were really gross. It was the gross ones that I liked best, and I decided to write some of them down, because they seemed too good to waste. Sadly no one wanted to publish them, but I got loads of positive feedback which encouraged me to go on writing. You can read the story called ‘Molly the Sheep’ here. It ends up being pretty disgusting, but I hope you like it.