Hello Laura. Welcome to The Poetry Zone. First of all, tell us about your new book.






It’s called
Dear Ugly Sisters and Other Poems.

Can you tell us a little bit about it?

It has poems in it. Some are short, some are long, some rhyme, some don’t, some are serious and some are funny. It also comes with a free audiobook so you can listen to me narrating it while you tidy your room or stare at the ceiling.

Do you write anything other than poetry? 

I write books with lots of FACTS in them. I also make STORIES up. I also write for radio and TV (mostly about LOVE). 

So, you write for adults as well as children.

Yes, although I try not to as adults aren’t as interesting as children. 

Have you another book planned?

I’m working on some children’s books right now – a picture book, a poetry collection about mental health and another top secret book I’m not allowed to tell you about. I’m also writing a(nother) book for adults (yawn) and a TV series.

When did you start writing?

When I was hit by a car. I was virtually bedbound for two years (which was very, VERY boring) and I found myself writing poetry to stay sane. 

How long does it take to write a poem?

Anywhere from 8 minutes to 8 years. 

Do you have a special time to write? 

No, I write anywhere and everywhere. There are poems, stories, words and ideas lurking all over the place and I just try to GRAB one when I see one. That can mean writing on napkins, notepads, phones or foreheads. Anything I can get my hands on. I also write a lot when I’m swimming or riding my bike.   

Do you visit schools? 

Yes. One of my favourite things in life is getting young people WRITING. And preferably also PERFORMING. And then making them promise me they will WRITE MORE.

How many schools have you visited?

Approximately 2,394,309.

Do you tend to answer questions honestly?

I’m most honest on Mondays and Thursdays. On Saturdays, don’t believe a thing I say.

What day is it today?


Which is the most unusual school that you’ve visited? 

I haven’t actually visited this school, but a Norwegian friend of mine told me about one that was on top of a mountain and the kids ski all day. I would like to visit there. 

Have you been on the TV or radio?

Yes. There are lots of clips on my website if you want to see me showing off. 


Who is your favourite poet?


(And that has NOTHING to do with the fact that he is the person asking these questions.) 

I’m pleased to hear that. How do you spend your spare time?

Writing poetry. Reading poetry. Reciting poetry. 


What did you do before becoming a poet?

I was a lawyer. So don’t mess with me or I’ll sue you.

Have you any pets?

No. I don’t like cleaning up poo. 

Do you have a web page?

Yes I do. It is and it has POEMS on it. (But no pets.)

What advice would you give to young poets?



And read. 

Try to be honest 

(except on Saturdays). 

Make a mess with words 

then tidy them up. 


Edit again. 

Don’t give up. 


Don’t give up. 


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