Hi. My name is Deborah Gafford. I mean it when I say Reading Can Take You Anywhere! Right now you are looking at a picture of me taken a few years ago in the ancient Guildhall of Stirling, Scotland sitting on the very same chair that actor Mel Gibson sat on for a brief segment of the film Braveheart. Now you may say, "What has this got to do with reading?"
Let me explain. I am a retired elementary school teacher and author with an avid interest in reading. I believe that reading can open doors for children (and adults) to a bright and wonderful world. Often, in our everyday lives, we long for adventure or perhaps simply a quiet place of pleasant peace far from the hectic pace of life. Through books, we can find just such experiences while still staying snug and comfortable in our own homes.
A few years ago, I went to Scotland to do some research for my books and through my association with other writers, met the Lord Provost of Stirling, Mr. John Paterson. (His position would be similar to that of a mayor in the United States.) He and I discussed interests in books and history, and through him, I was given the wonderful opportunity to tour the private Guildhall in Stirling which dates back to the medieval times.
My love of reading world history, Scotland in particular, led me to Stirling. Had it not been for the years of enjoyment and knowledge I gained from such reading, I might never have had the experience.
For years, when I taught young students to read, I would tell them it was like taking the most fantastic vacation they could imagine- for free. Through reading, anyone has the opportunity to improve his attitudes and his life.
Because of my firm belief in this statement, I read anytime that I can. When I am not reading, I am writing books or creating teaching units for homeschoolers and teachers to use to help their children learn. I write both children's and adult novels. This page will hopefully show parents a few ways to interest their children in reading as well as suggest a few methods to help children improve their reading skills.
I will update this page from time to time with new ideas, so please check back. If you are interested in reading an excerpt from one of my children's novels, just click on the last link above the EPPIES Award on the left side of the page.