Helen Laycock



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Helen Laycock

Goodreads Author


Born
The United Kingdom
Website

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Member Since
February 2012

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Helen Laycock's short stories have been successful in many writing competitions, and her first attempt at play-writing secured her a shortlisting in Pint-Sized Plays in 2016. Her writing has been published in a variety of anthologies and magazines.
She has compiled three short story collections and is currently working on three more.

Helen also writes flash fiction, and has been featured in The Best of CafeLit for the last three consecutive years.

In addition, she has penned nine children's books for 8-12-year-olds.

Her poetry is soon to appear in Popshot Magazine, and most recently has been published in The Caterpillar Magazine and Full Moon and Foxglove (Three Drops Press). Her poems appear in several further anthologies, and, since winnin
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Popular Answered Questions

Helen Laycock Hi Larry,
In this day and age, I think there are very few (lucky) writers who make a career out of writing alone, selling their books in their…more
Hi Larry,
In this day and age, I think there are very few (lucky) writers who make a career out of writing alone, selling their books in their millions, watching their stories being transposed to film and even enjoying the spin-off of sales from related merchandise.

I am not one of them. Bah!

So, in answer to your question, I have to be honest and say that my drive has never been financial. I have tales to tell, and that's that. A writer has to write, an artist has to paint and a musician has to compose, and the process is made all the better for having a responsive audience. Finding the right words to create a reaction in a reader is reward enough... though, of course, I wouldn't say no to all the extra perks!(less)
Helen Laycock Writer’s Block is something which most – if not all – writers experience once in a while.

It’s not something which particularly hounds me; if I stop,…more
Writer’s Block is something which most – if not all – writers experience once in a while.

It’s not something which particularly hounds me; if I stop, it’s usually because I’m tired and have run out of steam after a mammoth writing session. What writer hasn’t looked at the clock and found that it’s suddenly 3a.m.? Usually, my stopping points are sensible and naturally-occurring – at the end of a chapter or piece of action.

If, at that point, I feel that an onward struggle lies ahead, I will become a reader, not a writer, often coming back to it at a later stage. Sometimes, I’ll start again from the very beginning and read everything that’s happened up to that point. Sometimes, I’ll just go back a little way. It’s amazing how your subconscious mind can be working things out and planning the unexpected while your conscious mind is distracted by something else. By the time I’ve read up to my last stopping point, I can be raring to go again.

If a brick wall prevents me from seeing any further ahead, then it’s time for change of scene/character. Maybe the sub-plot needs attention at that point. Look at how many frames are in a film. If it becomes boring and tedious to write, then, it stands to reason, the reader will feel that way too. And we wouldn't want that, would we?!
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Average rating: 4.37 · 60 ratings · 50 reviews · 12 distinct works · Similar authors
Mandrake's Plot

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Minor Discord

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Light Bites

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The Secret of Pooks Wood

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Mr Charlie Chumpkins and Th...

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Peace and Disquiet

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Salt

4.40 avg rating — 5 ratings — published 2011 — 4 editions
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Glass Dreams

4.75 avg rating — 4 ratings — published 2011 — 3 editions
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A Mouthful of Chuckles

it was amazing 5.00 avg rating — 2 ratings — published 2012 — 2 editions
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Song of the Moon

really liked it 4.00 avg rating — 3 ratings — published 2011 — 5 editions
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More books by Helen Laycock…

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I think that all writers would agree that we do it – writing – purely because we love it, and also, perhaps, because we are a little bit obsessed by it!


However, it’s always an added bonus to get a bit of recognition:


It’s wonderful when someone tells you that they have enjoyed reading the words you have written; it’s fabulous when you find a new review of one of your books, or read...

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Song of the Moon (Children's Books)
1 chapters   —   updated Jan 31, 2017 08:19AM
Description: Isadora Wellington, known as Izzy, befriends Titania Moonsong, a wheelchair-bound old lady who lives at 13 Arnison Avenue. Rumour has it that Mrs Moonsong is a witch, which is hardly surprising: she has a black cat, Macbeth; her favourite piece of music is The Sorcerer’s Apprentice; and she makes peculiar concoctions from the herbs she grows in her garden. When Mrs Moonsong disappears and Dylan, a strange hippy, moves into her house, Izzy and her cousin Joe are concerned. It seems Dylan is the one intent on casting spells, and Mrs Moonsong is not the only one in danger. Suitable for readers of 7-12
Glass Dreams (Children's Books)
1 chapters   —   updated Jan 31, 2017 08:16AM
Description: Runaway Jake has no idea what adventures are in store when he finds young circus performer Khala hiding in a ramshackle caravan. Jake sees things – dreams, visions… But should he reveal the contents of the mysterious box he has been warned never to open? Khala has secrets of her own, secrets which could threaten her friendship with Jake. And she is not the only one of the performers with something to hide. Jake soon discovers that Fantazi’s Circus is a place of danger, and together, he and Khala begin to uncover the layers of deceit which have an impact on them both. However, neither one is prepared for the biggest discovery of all. For readers of 8-12
Martha and Mitch (Children's Books)
1 chapters   —   updated Nov 30, 2016 06:06AM
Description: Martha is humble and unspoilt, despite living a life of utter luxury at Lottery Lodge with her (mostly absent) father and stepmother Penelope. Mitch lives at the boys’ orphanage, a dilapidated mansion run by Ariadne Scattypants. Neither child has any idea about the life the other is leading. Between Lottery Lodge and the orphanage is a dense wood and it is here that a band of wild boys live. Mitch finds himself at their mercy, but somehow manages to scrabble his way out of the woods, emerging at Martha’s wonderful home. However, here, too, things are taking a sinister turn. Suitable for readers of 8-12
The Secret of Pooks Wood (Children's Books)
1 chapters   —   updated Nov 30, 2016 06:03AM
Description: A time-shift adventure for readers of 9+ When twins Lily and Ollie are stranded at Great Hawkesden Manor over Christmas with their mother Stella, they have no idea what will happen when they find an old glass snow globe. Inside it not only is there a miniature model of the manor house, but there is magic. A time-shift adventure for readers of 9-12
Mr Charlie Chumpkins and The Further Mishaps of Charlie Chumpkins (Children's Books)
1 chapters   —   updated Oct 03, 2016 09:35AM
Description: A bumper volume of the light-hearted adventures of a tiny man. For readers 8 - 12. Imagine Sam’s shock when he discovers that a tiny, old-fashioned gentleman, Charlie Chumpkins, has been living under his bed for some time—and imagine, too, the pressure of keeping his little friend a secret. Enjoy a double dose of trouble in this bumper edition of Mr Charlie Chumpkins and its sequel, The Further Mishaps of Charlie Chumpkins as Charlie gets himself caught up in calamity after calamity…
More of Helen’s writing…
The Husband Who R...
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Helen’s Recent Updates

" Here's a short excerpt from Song of the Moon. Mrs Moonsong has gone missing, and Izzy and Joe are determined to find out where.

[image]

Izzy and Joe f
...more "
Helen Laycock made a comment in the group Great Middle Grade ReadsDeath in MG fiction topic
" Reading about experiences outside one's comfort zone is a safe, second-hand way of experiencing events. I think that's the case with lovers of horror ...more "
" [image]

An excerpt from Mandrake's Plot, a boarding school mystery for readers of 8-12 set in the Scottish Highlands:


After half an hour, Evie happene
...more "
" Aha! Just found this thread. Marvellous. "
Helen Laycock and 4 other people liked Nick Iuppa's review of Song of the Moon:
Song of the Moon by Helen Laycock
"Another magical adventure from Ms. Laycock tells of young Isadora Wellington who wants to earn her Brownie Merit Badge by doing good deeds for an elderly person. Izzy chooses to help Titania Moonsong an old, wheelchair bound woman who lives down t..." Read more of this review »
Helen Laycock made a comment in the group UK Book ClubBuying Books topic
" The library is a fantastic source of FREE BOOKS! And if they haven't got what you want, then they will order it for you. They also supply audio books ...more "
Helen Laycock joined the group UK Book Club
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Helen Laycock is currently reading
The Husband Who Refused to Die by Andrea Darby
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More of Helen's books…
“That winter everything changed. Stella had lost not only her twin but her best friend. Bayonie was never mentioned again, so that, in time, Stella wondered if she really had ever existed.”
Helen Laycock, The Secret of Pooks Wood

“As their eyes became accustomed to the light, the girls were startled to see the figure in front of them. Hunched over, wearing a dark cloak, was an old man. His long, white hair straggled over his shoulders, his skin was covered with grey whiskers and one of his eyes, hooded, drooped below the other bulging one. His mouth hung open and his yellowed teeth did nothing to stop his rank breath pervading the air.”
Helen Laycock, Mandrake's Plot

“He really just wanted to blurt out, ‘My Grandma’s dead’, but he knew that when it came to it, the words would stick like pebbles in his throat.”
Helen Laycock, Glass Dreams

“...“Maybe it’s like this, Max--you know how, when you are working on a long and ordered piece, all sorts of bright and lovely ideas and images intrude. They have no place in what you are writing, and so if you are young, you write them in a notebook for future use. And you never use them because they are sparkling and alive like colored pebbles on a wave-washed shore. It’s impossible not to fill your pockets with them. But when you get home, they are dry and colorless. I’d like to pin down a few while they are still wet.”...'
John Steinbeck”
John Steinbeck

“Do not follow where the path may lead.
Go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.”
Harold McAlindon

“He really just wanted to blurt out, ‘My Grandma’s dead’, but he knew that when it came to it, the words would stick like pebbles in his throat.”
Helen Laycock, Glass Dreams

“That winter everything changed. Stella had lost not only her twin but her best friend. Bayonie was never mentioned again, so that, in time, Stella wondered if she really had ever existed.”
Helen Laycock, The Secret of Pooks Wood

“As their eyes became accustomed to the light, the girls were startled to see the figure in front of them. Hunched over, wearing a dark cloak, was an old man. His long, white hair straggled over his shoulders, his skin was covered with grey whiskers and one of his eyes, hooded, drooped below the other bulging one. His mouth hung open and his yellowed teeth did nothing to stop his rank breath pervading the air.”
Helen Laycock, Mandrake's Plot

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