Go Play in the Sand, John

August 1, 2008 · Filed Under Go Play in the Sand, Kavanagh Tipping Publishing · 1 Comment 

Great excitement. We have published my book ‘Go Play in the Sand, John’. It is published by Kavanagh Tipping Publishing. Frances Kavanagh ghost wrote my book for me and she is in partnership with Jill. It is going to be ready on Monday and we have already had loads of orders.

On Wednesday I did some filming for BBC South East Today. They did a really nice news piece on the 6.30 news. You can see it here


In the book I just talk about my life. The first part is called The Pit. Things were a bit grim at times. I remember having to sit in front of my 11 plus paper not being able to read the questions let alone answer them. How strange that they expected kids like me to do that! The second part of the book is called The Awakening which happened about 5 years ago when a simple change of attitude changed my life. I suddenly started to see all the things I had, instead of feeling bitter about what I didn’t have. From then on, I just started putting things in place to replace the reading and writing which I couldn’t do.

Technology has helped hugely and I would like to pass on my thanks to Shirley Meakins, my mate who helped me to get Access to Work to provide me with not only the equipment but also the training I needed. I don’t think I thanked her in the book which was bad of me, but without her, I wouldn’t have got as far as I have.

Monday is the last one in the series Can’t Read, Can’t Write and I am IN IT! It is official becasue it says on the Channel 4 website …’this week we meet John…’ That’s me. I bet I am going to make a right spanner of myself. Never mind.

Channel 4 Can’t Read Can’t Write

Did you see me on the tele? Jill has been reading me a lot of the reaction to the programme last night. it seems that it touched a lot of people emotionally. I was terrified waiting for it to come on. I knew I wouldn’t be on very much because my one is coming up last in two weeks time. I tell you what though – I was really miffed that Phil didn’t try the pipe cleaner thing with me – I think it would have worked. Oh well. He did what he thought was right for me but I think he found me a bit tough going. Jill says that when I find things really hard, I get angry and push them away which looks as though I can’t be bothered which couldn’t be further from the truth – it is just so hard – it’s exhausting – so I suppose in a way I do give up but my brain just won’t hold the information long enough for me to make sense of sentences and things. It’s so difficult to describe.

We wanted to be able to get across what it is like to be unable to read and write properly and so I have written a book with the help of Frances who was my ‘ghost writer’. it has just gone to print now and it is called ‘Go Play in the Sand, John’. I have told my story in the hope that it will help people to understand but also I want it to inpsire people into going out there and making stuff happen, even though they may have things in their life that hold them back. It’s not what happens to you in life, it is how you deal with it. For instance, I can’t write this blog – I do not have the right brain to be able to do it, so my Jill does it for me – I am still making it happen aren’t I? Just in a different way. Also, I can surf the internet because Access to Work bought me a computer with special software on which allows me to hear the text and I can write short sentences with Dragon Speak software. That means I can write my own invoices and quotations – I always get Jill to check them mind!

Writing a book is a bit ironic – I can’t read it! But we want to put it on to audio so people can listen to it if they struggle with reading. It costs though so we have to take one step at a time.

You can see some excerpts here on the publishers site http://kavanaghtipping.com/index.php/Forthcoming-Titles/Go-Play-in-the-Sand-John.html
I have to get my head straight now and go out and earn some money – not sure I will be able to live off my new found fame just yet!!!!