Here is a short synopsis of a story I’ve been working on for the better  part of ten years, off and on. I’m really feeling the pull to sit and finally finish it. At least before I’m 70! The story is geared to boys and girls between 9 and 12, although I think it will appeal more to girls, as the protagonist is female. The story is set in scenic Wales.

Penelope Parker is ten years old, and is what kids today would call “nerdy”. She loves to read, is smart in school. She is a pretty child with flyaway red hair, freckles, and she wears glasses. Of course, she gets teased and called “four eyes” and “teacher’s pet” among other things. And, oh yes, she has a beloved cat, Hecate, that she confides all her troubles to. Hecate is a very different cat, but you will discover that when you read the book!

Penelope Parker sighed. It had turned out to be another one of those days at the school she went to. Things always seemed to happen around Penelope, especially when she was upset. There was the time Dexter Bigglesworth had called her ‘four-eyes’ because she wore glasses, and  next thing you know, Dexter has four eyes in his face. Or the time her teacher, Miss Nettlethorpe scolded her for daydreaming, and then suddenly found herself floating near the ceiling. Then there was today. The biggest catastrophe of all. That horrible Cornelia Thistlethwaite had been bullying Penelope again, calling her all kinds of names. The last straw came as Cornelia danced around singing, “Penny Parker has no dad, B-A-S-T-” Penelope was stunned, then furious, and she felt her anger boiling over. Shaking, she pointed her finger at Cornelia and shouted, “Zip it up!”

There was a ‘snap’, a ‘fizzle’, a flash, then dead silence, except for the gurgles coming from Cornelia’s throat. All she could do was gurgle, because where her mouth used to be was a large metal zip! Everyone gasped, and of course, it was at this very moment that Miss Nettlethorpe strode into the room

From that time on, Penelope’s life was never to be the same. Follow her adventures and the scrapes she and Hecate get into, and the danger just around the corner.

About Susan McCaskill

Susan (or Sue, as she prefers to be called), was born in post war England, and lived there until the age of nine, when she and her mother emigrated to Canada. Her father died when she was nine, and left a huge impression on her. Both her parents encouraged her to read, and learn. She has always believed in fairies and elves, and probably always will, and as a child, she saw things many others didn't, and as a result she was thought to be a little strange.

Sue currently lives on beautiful Vancouver Island with her husband and three demanding cats.

Although she has been in Canada for so many years, she still misses the English and Welsh countryside, and because of this, her novel is based in the ancient, picturesque town of Betws-Y-Coed.

About herself, she says:

"I think I was born a writer, and got more confidence thanks to my grade five teacher, who was wonderful, and fostered my love for writing. I didn't write for almost 40 years, because of raising kids, life happenings, the usual drama. I started again sporadically ten years ago, and finished my first Mid Grade fantasy in 2013. Currently working on book 2.

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