September has sneaked up very fast indeed, and now I’m already thinking about Christmas. Not for presents, I can assure you, but because of the booklet of students’ stories I produce every Christmas for charity. Planning for this project begins in my first class in September – I ask all students (ages range from eight to eighty) to come up with ideas for the story they’re going to submit. Last year we published stories by students from Malahide, Donabate, Swords, Rush, Lusk, and Skerries, and sold three hundred booklets for St. Vincent de Paul. In December we have a launch in Skerries Mills, where we eat mince pies, listen to readings and students sign booklets for family and friends. My absolute favourite part of the whole project is when I give each writer a copy of the booklet for the first time. The delight on their faces while they read their own story, in print, is priceless.