A children’s author from Leeds says he has the Yorkshire Evening Post to thank for his love of reading as he prepares to launch his new book.
Tom Palmer’s latest book - Killing Ground - is set in Halifax and concerns a haunting at The Shay Stadium, which leads to an Anglo-Saxon Viking conflict.
“I wanted to write about history, and a haunting with ghosts. I researched Anglo-Saxon settlements, visited The Shay and visited a settlement they recreated in Norfolk. Plus I wanted to set it in Halifax. When I read Wuthering Heights when I was 19 it amazed me that a classic like that was set around where I grew up - books about your home town make them more interesting.
“When I was younger I hated reading, so my mum used to buy my the Yorkshire Evening Post so I could read Leeds United stories. I also used to get Shoot and Match magazines.
“There wasn’t that much reading material about football for children around in those days, but there’s so much amazing stuff out there now.”
Tom was born in Leeds but now lives in Halifax and will also be talking at the Reading Matters Conference in Bradford on June 29 at a workshop entitled ‘Removing Barriers to Reading’.
“A lot of what I’ll be talking about will be on dyslexia and visual stress and how the design of a book, how it’s printed, the font and the layout can all help children who have those conditions to read more and make reading more accessible.
“There will be teachers at the conference, so it’s a case of teaching them about what is out there.
“I think reading is really important, not just in school because it helps them progress academically, but for their confidence. When I do workshops I can always tell the children who read because they’re more confident and brighter.”