• The Word Hoard •

Passed a day returning to Homeplace in Bellaghy.

On a visit you could easily spend hours listening & browsing.

The rural context of Heaney’s origins give a layer of understanding & meaning that gives the poems full expression.

In sitting down with one of the children to listen to a recording of Digging, I realised that the lines ‘My grandfather cut more turf in a day/Than any other man on Toner’s bog’ are a childhood boast by a child. My dad’s bigger than your dad. Brilliantly rendered. Previously unnoticed.

Here & there to see people ensconced, listen intently to a poem, it shows how to bring the words alive. I pointed out to the guide how Seamus Heaney had gifted a handwritten manuscript of ‘Markings’ to our GAA club. We weren’t the only ones for sure.

The word hoard installation suspended from the roof hangs there, offering you a word to reach for, grasp & use. Dandering. Blathering. Blessed.

#Heaney #Homeplace #Poetry #IrishPoetry #IrishTourism #wildatlanticway

Monday Microbiome Blues

Woke up this morning. Time for the frosty back to school post Christmas Happy New Year blues.

Only one thing worse than no lead in your pencil is no ink in your pen. Narrowly avoided the latter fate by finding a bottle of blue ink. What else would you use for writing the blues.

The advantage of working at home is the possibility of moving from office to kitchen to living room and to bed even if the motion takes me. Peripatetic pen pushing. The living room complete with fire lit is hard to beat. If I could improve my office it would be with fire. I don’t mean by burning it & all that’s in there no, I mean for heating purposes. Otherwise it is a comfortable & reasonable creative space.

I was able to go all in-house Bear Grylls by foraging an egg carton & milk jar to ignite the turf which wouldn’t even previously give me a smouldering look.

Now the flames lick around it lasciviously, hot, smoky, a warm & tinder embrace.

Meanwhile the resident handyman repairs the basketball busted window from the other day.

Today is about getting back on track & scheduling myself for January & beyond.

I read this in the Irish News: “it’s time to give your gut a boost & keep your microbiome in check.” Indeed. & this: “engage in diaphragmatic breathing, yoga, tai chi, meditation & mindfulness to combat a chronic stress state.” Are they all to be done together?

So much for the blues.

Mr Bommit

Mr Bommit lived in a bucket

He came from a land called Uppsett Stomach

Inside his bucket was very smelly

Like all the bad things from a rumbly belly
All the carrots went crunch crunch 

The last time we saw them was for our lunch
Mr Bommit made an awful sound

As he poured himself out on the ground
He burbles and burps and gurgles goo

Sometimes I found it on my shoe
Even when my dinners very tasty

Mr Bommit ruined it he’s so hasty
When Upsett Stomachs not too good

It’s the wrong place to be storing food
It rumbles and roars and chunters up

You just can’t stop it when you burp
The only thing to stop Mr Bommit is

A little Sprite with sugar on it
It makes him want to go away 

Don’t come back Mr Bommit another day. 

Good Writing = Pain Free Reading

The limits of my language are the limits of my world.”


So. You’re interested in writing?

  • Are you missing an opportunity because your written communication is letting you down?
  • Is your business suffering from an inability to communicate?
  • Can you describe what you do in a concise and appealing way. The elevator pitch. A cliché but it is true.
  • Can you describe what you do in a way that engages interest?
  • Or would it take every flight of stairs in a fifty storey building to explain what you do?

Everyone Communicates

Everyone uses words to communicate. Some do it better than others, but in our experience most writing fails to achieve its potential – business communication, CVs, letters, job applications, press releases. The list is endless and so is the failure to communicate effectively. Social media has made it worse. The immediacy of it means the message is out there, often without thought or meaning.

Finding Your Voice

Finding a voice means that you can get your own feeling into your own words and that your words have the feel of you about them. Seamus Heaney, Feeling Into Words

Organisations can benefit from better writing. If you are up for it, we will take your communication, rewrite it and help you understand what was wrong with it in the first place.

Organisations will spend loads of money on print, design, PR advice, web design – but all too often the written words that are the bedrock of communication are neglected.

The result? You fail to communicate your brand or you cannot explain your product. Large organisations slip into bureaucratic jargon that looks great but when you read it? It is meaningless.


Experience includes journalism, public relations, social media, blogging, SEO, advertising, corporate publications, direct mail, writing for the web, speeches, CVs and covering letters, job applications and funding applications. If it can be written down – we are fairly confident that we can do it and if we can help you we will.

Why Do We Do This?

Much corporate writing is cold, unappealing – it doesn’t whet your appetite and in fact the person who write it probably found is a chore in the first place. Why then anyone expects you to read it is a mystery.

Writing can be much more interesting. Enjoyable even. Reading it becomes enjoyable too. Well we enjoy it – we can turn tales of morbidity and mortality into reader friendly stories of sickness and death.