Ross Mountney Blog Tour

‘Meet’ Ross Mountney on her Blog Tour this February


Ross Mountney has been writing about parenting and home education for many years, firstly as the author of ‘A Home Educating Nobody’ in the newsletter of Education Otherwise, then moving on to writing her own books. In her own words, she says that she writes ‘…to help and support others. To encourage and inspire others to make choices, to be who they want to be, and to live an individual and inspired life.’

A quick glance through her many reviews show that she is doing exactly that!

“I have read Ross’s books and articles for years and I have to say that I always feel more relaxed and inspired after reading them – thanks Ross for reassuring and inspiring me so many times during the past 20 years!”( on ‘A Home Education Notebook’)

“This is a beautiful account of one family’s journey through home education: why they chose to do it, how they started, the ups and downs and the wonderful experiences they had along the way. I found it truly inspiring and would recommend this to anyone starting out on a home educating adventure.” (on ‘A Funny Kind of Education’)

“I hardly ever write reviews, but was compelled to with this book. It is amazing. I am so thankful to Ross for writing such an insightful, reassuring, informative, uplifting and inspiring book.” (on ‘A Home Education Notebook’)

(Reviews on Amazon)

And now we are pleased to give you a chance to ‘meet’ Ross. Well, sort of… virtually anyway! In February Ross will be taking part in a Blog Tour. If this is not something you’ve come across before, you can think of it as a little like a book tour, only instead of physically appearing at venues, Ross will be appearing as a guest writer on other blogs.

We are very excited about the wonderful bloggers who will be hosting Ross’s posts on their blogs during that time; Becky from Family Budgeting, Hayley from Downs Side Up, Louise from LouiseWaltersWriter, David from DadvWorld, Keris from Happy Home Ed and Holly from Natural Mumma. Ross will also be featured on The Home Education Podcast around that time. Huge thanks to them for taking part.

Ross will be talking about parenting, home education and writing – check the schedule below to see where she’s going to be on each day, pop in to ‘meet’ her there and take the chance to have a look around each of the inspiring blogs she’s stopping at. Follow us on Facebook or Twitter if you’d like reminders closer to the time!

Blog Tour Dates:

Thursday 2nd Feb – and The Home Education Podcast Episode 43

Friday 3rd Feb –

Saturday 4th Feb –

Monday 6th Feb –

Tuesday 7th Feb –

Wednesday 8th Feb –

Thursday 9th Feb The Home Education Podcast Episode 44

Writers’ workshops, competition results and new books out

We’ve been discovering that there’s a lot of writing talent in our local area of Fenland in Cambridgeshire. On 19th June we ran our ‘Prose to Print’ workshop, which was supported by Market Place; 24 people came along to find out more about traditional publishing, self-publishing and indie presses. In the afternoon we were joined by authors Sue Welfare, Jon Lawrence and Darren O’Sullivan who shared their experiences, answered questions and gave tips. It was a fantastic, if tiring, day. Thank you so much to the wonderful participants for their enthusiasm and to the authors for their inspiring and uplifting talks.

The Writers’ Panel at Prose to Print


If you missed it or you live too far away to attend, fear not! We were delighted that local film maker David Johnson of DMJ-Imagery came along to record the afternoon panel session. The videos are still in post-production, but as soon as they’re ready we’ll let you know and you’ll have the opportunity to watch all three speakers give their talks and see the Q&A session that followed. They’re incredibly interesting to all, and invaluable if you’re a writer; they really are not to be missed.

At the end of the day we announced the results of our inaugural Short Story Competition. Open to writers in our local area, we asked for stories of no more than 1500 words on the theme of birds. It was judged by Sue Welfare and Jon Lawrence and the results were:

In third place, Song of the Blackbird by Rosemary Westwell. The judges said Rosemary’s story was ‘vividly written with a great sense of place and a nice rhythm and pace to it.’

In second place, Seasons Past by D S Benjamin, which the judges thought was a ‘mature, poignant and beautifully written exploration … Beautifully paced and observed.’

And in first place, The Last Moa by Gemma Wells. The judges both picked Gemma’s story as a clear winner, commenting that it was ‘beautifully composed and written…We get a fabulous sense of place and the two voices are rich and distinctive. I love the casual and appropriate use of the Latin and indigenous names – not talking down to us as readers, nor explaining, but giving us context which allows us to understand, while also giving as a vivid glimpse into the world the writer has created. Fabulous!’

Congratulations to all! You can read Gemma’s story in full here

Are you a writer? Would you like the opportunity to work on your creative writing skills with other writers? Building on the success of Prose to Print, we are currently developing a series of workshops on creative writing for novelists. If you are within striking distance of March in Cambridgeshire, and you think this sounds like it could be for you, please email us to express your interest. There’s no commitment.

We’re still busy on the publishing side too. A Home Education Notebook came out on 27th June to a great reception and 5* reviews. Huge congratulations to author Ross Mountney! We’re just putting the finishing touches to Ross’s new book, The Wrong Adventure, which sees Harry from Who’s Not In School? up to more mischief! Once again illustrated by the talented James Robinson, it will be out soon. You can buy all these books from our shop.

Bird’s Nest Books at the St George’s Fayre in March, Cambs. – Sunday 24th April

Pick up a free book as part of World Book Night, enter our Short Story Competition or find out about our writing and publishing workshops at the St George’s Fayre in March, Cambs. on Sunday 24th April. Our stall will be outside the library and Jane Levicki and Claire Upton will be there to tell you all about the titles we’re publishing this year and the exciting events we have planned.

WBN logo in headline

World Book Night Giveaway



As part of World Book Night, we’ll have FREE copies of Reasons To Stay Alive by Matt Haig to give away.


Short Story Competition

Short Story Comp logo

Find out how to enter the inaugural Bird’s Nest Books Short Story Competition. Open to adults (aged 16 and over) living in or near Fenland, this is a competition to write a short story with a maximum of 1500 words on the theme of ‘Birds’.

There are three prizes and the deadline for entries is 20th May 2016.

Come and have a chat to us at the Fayre or read further details here, then go and put fingers to keyboard – we can’t wait to read your stories!

Writing and Publishing Workshops

We’ll also have details of our forthcoming workshops, including:

  • Publishing Your Book (traditionally or self-publishing)
  • Comic and Graphic Novel creation
  • Creative Writing

Or if there’s something else you’d like to do, please do come and tell us!

Books For Sale

We’ll have our own books for sale, plus books by local authors  (cash only please) 

Authors and Illustrators

Lastly, if you’re a writer or an artist and would like to find out about the opportunities for working with us, come along and have a chat, we’d love to meet you!


Are you an illustrator or a book cover artist?

We are happy to announce that we are currently taking submissions from illustrators and book cover artists. We would love you to send us your portfolio or some examples of your work. Whether you are a published artist or someone who just has a passion for sketching, we would like to hear from you.

Submitting your portfolio will not necessarily guarantee you work but it will mean that you will be entered into our database so that we can match artwork with manuscripts awaiting publication. Thus putting you into the runnings to have your work commissioned.

To submit to us or for more information please email us at

We also highly recommend signing up for our newsletter, as you will be the first to know when submissions are open (or closed), events, book releases, workshops and many more exciting things.

Happy Sketching
Claire x

Come and see us at the Indie Publishing Panel in Nottingham Fri 26th Feb


Leaflets and business cards at the ready! We’re very excited to be going to The Only Way Is Indie, the indie publishing event hosted by Mother’s Milk Books, at the Nottingham Writers’ Studio this Friday 26th February.

“This event will see various local (and not-so-local) publishers come together to discuss the benefits of independent publishers for both writers and readers, as well as outlining their publishing aspirations for the future. The panel will be chaired by Dr Teika Bellamy of Mother’s Milk Books and Sara-Jayne Slack of Inspired Quill. The publishers will be welcoming questions put to them, and there will be a bookstall as well.

So far, Inspired Quill, Mother’s Milk Books, Bird’s Nest Books, The Emma Press, Five Leaves Publications, Wild Pressed Books, Three Drops Press, Arundel Books, Unthank Books, Stonewood Press, Five Leaves Bookshop and Pewter Rose Press have confirmed attendance.

Refreshments will be available.”

The event is from 7.30 – 9.30pm, it’s free and no booking is necessary, so do come along and say hello!

Nottingham Writers’ Studio
25 Hockley