I have been very honoured. The Bromsgrove Standard very kindly asked me to write a special short story for them on the lead up to Valentine's day.
You can find the story here, http://www.bromsgrovestandard.co.uk/paper/ on page 12 of the newspaper. I hope you enjoy it.
I remember the very first time I ever read the Standard. I was house-hunting in Bromsgrove and it seemed like a good idea to read the local newspaper to get a flavour of what life could be like here. It was also the first time I had encountered a local newspaper, since none of the cities I had lived in before [Glasgow, London, Birmingham] had published anything so closely linked to the lives of its inhabitants.
The distinction between a national newspaper and a local one, is more than just a difference in the types of articles they cover, for the disparity lies not just in scale but in proximity. The Standard knows its readers ['demographics' to other newspapers] better than just by their bank balances and the size of their homes - it knows their hearts, the things that make them tick, their whims and their foibles and it knows this because the people who write for it are local too.
I can't claim to know you all so intimately, but over the past two years I have had the pleasure of conducting a number of talks around the area, so I hope you will enjoy my little offering.