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Writing About Ballyyahoo

WRITING ABOUT BALLYYAHOO

little Irish town illustrating article about writing the Ballyahoo series of books by Grace Jolliffe

I started writing about Ballyyahoo when I moved to Galway some years ago. I was inspired by the natural beauty of my new environment and knew I wanted to base some stories here.

Ballyyahoo is a fictional town that I have hidden between the mountains and the sea. I don’t reveal its exact location in the stories but when I am writing Ballyyahoo is everywhere I am.

What I love the most about writing these stories is that I get to combine my love of the outdoors with my love for writing magical fiction.

I really hope to inspire the kids who read these stories to go outside and explore the countryside or local parks.

ABOUT BALLYYAHOO

Ballyyahoo is a tiny town. It has got one Church, one pub, one school, one tiny police station and one rusty old post-box. There’s only one shop; Kelly’s shop, which sells everything. Kelly’s is also a post office and on Tuesdays it’s a meeting place for the Ballyyahoo Squawk Bird Appreciation Society.

ANIMALS

Ballyyahoo has lots of animals. Not just ordinary ones like dogs, cats, horses, cows and tiny ponies. There’s also a mad cow, a scary donkey, and a whole flock of squawking, squawk birds.

STORIES FROM BALLYYAHOO

THE LITTLE BOOK OF SWINGING ON A GATE

Like the rest of Ireland, Ballyyahoo has lots of lovely beaches and bays, so you’d think there’d be lots for kids to do but some kids are bored and this is where the fun and the stories begin.

One of the bored kids is Gerry. He is so bored all he does is swing on a gate. One day his mother finds some work for him to do but something goes badly wrong and for once, it just might be Gerry who saves the day. You can read all about Gerry in ‘The Little Book Of Swinging On A Gate.’

CHRISTMAS IN BALLYYAHOO

Christmas in Ballyyahoo was going to be the best one ever, until Santa and Rudolph show up on Christmas Eve. Santa and Rudolph are not all they appear to be, and they have no intention of wishing anyone a happy Christmas, especially not anyone from Ballyyahoo.

The only thing they want to wrap up for Christmas is Kevin and Gerry! There’s only one person can help them and that’s the wonderful Witch of Ballyyahoo.

BONKERS IN BALLYYAHOO

Gerry’s got a cousin called Kevin and when Kevin gets bored Kevin gets bad. He’s always in trouble and when he’s not in trouble he’s thinking about trouble.

Kevin’s mother thought a computer would keep him out of mischief but instead, Kevin used it make as much mischief as he could.

You can read about how Kevin’s mischief nearly brought the whole town to a halt in ‘Bonkers in Ballyyahoo.’

THE WITCH OF BALLYYAHOO

The best thing about Ballyyahoo is that there’s never any crime. Nothing really bad ever happens. Local Sergeant, Sid, thinks it’s because of him but little does he know there’s a secret force in Ballyyahoo and we’re not talking about a police force.

You can learn the secret force and the magic powers that keep crime under control in ‘The Witch of Ballyyahoo.’

THE REAL HALLOWEEN

If you know Ireland you’ll know there’s lots and lots of bogs. It’s the same in Ballyyahoo. But, there is a very big difference between the bog in Ballyyahoo and the rest of the bogs in Ireland, and it’s nothing to do with the turf.

You see the bog in Ballyyahoo is the scariest, darkest, mistiest bog in the whole of Ireland and even has its own haunted well – Dancer’s Well.

Someone who knows all about Dancer’s Well is a boy named Sean. Sean was never afraid of ghosts until his Grandad told him the terrifying tale of ‘The Real Halloween.’

Ballyyahoo is a constant source of inspiration for me, so there’s sure to be more stories from Ballyyahoo.

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