'all ready to flounce off to Starbucks'

'Was all ready to flounce off to Starbucks after not being on the Costa list (The Humans' last prize hope) but it is a great list by writers who are all better than me so I'm staying in and having a green tea.'


when billy was 9 he lived with his dad in a house miles away from other houses or any other buildings. the summer holidays were the best and the worst. six weeks of his own company. him and the trees and the fields and the newts and the mornings and the dark. 

then one day he met the boy. the boy was slightly bigger than billy, 10 or 11 perhaps, and he didn't say anything about where he had come from or much at all really. he just started walking next to billy as billy headed into the forest. 

they didn't talk about the kinds of things people often talk about when they first meet. they didn't ask each other their ages or where they lived, they just walked. 

they walked on the paths that were already made and they made new ones. they didn't get lost. 

and everything looked a bit different that day. as if billy was suddenly wearing glasses. clearer. sharper. 


back in school in september, billy had to write about the best day of the holidays. he wanted to write about the day the boy came but he found he couldn't. describing it was impossible. the game they played, where billy was a pirate and the boy was a spanish king, didn't make sense any more. billy couldn't remember the rules, or even if there'd been any. instead he made something up about going to the fair with his dad. he added the kind of detail that he knew teachers like - the SMELL of candyfloss, the SOUND of screams from the waltzers... he got an A for it. simon, who he sat next to, was jealous. he'd only gotten a B and he took twice as long writing his. it was only mid-september, but summer seemed a very long time ago.