An Illustration of a vwery colourful friendly monster. He is green. He wears pink polka dot pyjamas and fluffy red slippers.

Kevin the Monster comes to life

Did you know that a very special group of young people with nystagmus have helped children’s author, Tim Pearce create a character for his brand new book, Secret Agent Striker Strikes Back?

Tim was kind enough to run a children’s story writing workshop for us last year. Tim and the children created a story and a brand new character together. That colourful character was Kevin the Monster. Here’s how it happened, by Tim:

“In May 2021, I had the pleasure of sitting down with an amazing charity called Nystagmus Network for a ‘meet the author’ event.

The love and positivity the children displayed throughout the story showed that we should treat everyone the same, regardless of differences. I am proud to have had the opportunity to have written this story with them and would like to say a massive thank you to Ameerah, Oscar, Hannah, Josh and Abbie, along with the other children who contributed to the story.” – Tim Pearce

Kevin has been brought to life from the children’s imaginations by Tim’s regular illustrator, Jodie Dowie.

Here’s what we think of Kevin.

“Very colourful, fun rainbow horns. It’s great to see our ideas put together.“ – Ameerah

“Please thank Jodie for this fantastic illustration! The colours are so vibrant and eye catching and I love the cave with all the little details. He looks actually very friendly and approachable in his eyes despite his giant size and appearance. Perfect!” – Karen Chu, Trustee

“Oh, my goodness the slippers!!! Kevin is truly amazing. The children will LOVE him!” Sue, Nystagmus Network

The book costs £7.99, includes the above image of Kevin the monster and an acknowledgement of the children from Tim and is in nystagmus friendly large print.

Order Secret Agent Striker Strikes Back from Smile Amazon here

Front cover of the Raindrops story book

Raindrops on World Book Day

In celebration of World Book Day 2022, we are pleased to announce the publication of the Raindrops story book.

This digital publication includes the winning stories, inspired by raindrops, written by Annabelle, Eliana, Harry and Daria. Read what our esteemed judges thought of their Nystagmus Awareness Day 2021 competition entries and the drawings submitted by Nerea, Myles, Alishba and Luca.

Download your free copy of the Raindrops story book here

With thanks to all the children who took part in the competition, to Josh for the inspiration, to our judges: Tim Pearce, Katherine Mengardon and Nadine Neckles, to children’s authors, Tim Pearce, Helen Rutter and Claire Alexander for their inspirational writing workshops, to our generous sponsors for the prizes and to Nick for designing the book for us.

Tim Pearce

Thank you, Tim

Children’s author, Tim Pearce who modestly describes himself as ‘the favourite children’s author you’ve never heard of’ joined the Nystagmus Network earlier this week to lead a fun and inspiring story writing workshop for children.

Tim began by sharing his journey to publishing his first book ‘Secret Agent Striker’ and then gave us a sneaky preview, but no spoilers, for his follow up book, due out later this summer. He is currently writing book three in the series.

When asked what spurred him to write, Tim said he has always loved being creative and has a passion for writing strong characters. He also loves a plot twist and tries to cram in as many as he can to keep his young readers on the edge of their seats.

The Nystagmus Network children’s story

Tim then led the children taking part in the online workshop to write their own story, collaboratively, with everyone chipping in ideas for character names, appearance and even the design of their slippers! Tim promises that the nystagmus children’s story will appear as part of his next book.

Order Tim’s book on Amazon Smile here

Inspired by Tim?

Raindrops story writing and drawing competition for children

What do raindrops mean to you? What do they smell, sound, feel or taste like? What do they make you think of? How do they capture your imagination?

The Nystagmus Network Raindrops competition celebrates the wonderful creativity of children’s writing and illustration.

The best stories and drawings will be published in a special book which will be available to purchase from September 2021.

How to enter

The competition is open to all children with or without nystagmus, aged 5 to 14 years. There will be winners in each age category.

Download the competition rules and an entry form here

Completed entries (entry form plus story and / or drawing on Raindrops writing paper or drawing paper) should be emailed to [email protected] Deadline: 23:59 on Saturday 19 June

Prizes and a book

There will be some fabulous prizes for the winners of each age category, including books signed by your favourite children’s author. As many stories and drawings as possible will be published in a book which will be available for sale from September.

Get sponsored

If your little one is a reluctant writer, why not encourage them by asking friends and family to sponsor them 1p a word?

Download a Raindrops sponsor form here

A child takes part in an online writing workshop with author, Helen Rutter. On his desk is Helen's book 'The Boy Who Made Everyone Laugh'.

Children’s writing workshops this summer

Did you miss the children’s online writing workshop with fabulous children’s author, Helen Rutter? What a shame. That means you didn’t get to hear all about Helen’s inspiration behind her book ‘The Boy Who Made Everyone Laugh’ and you didn’t get to meet her dog, Billy Whizz!

Never mind. There are two more workshops still to come.

The first is with ‘Secret Agent Striker’ author, Tim Pearce and the second is with children’s writer and illustrator, Claire Alexander, author of ‘A Little Bit Different’.

Meet Tim Pearce

Children aged 7 years and up are invited to join a FREE interactive workshop with Tim Pearce, author of Secret Agent Striker. Tim will share his passion for writing, his inspiration and what he plans to write about next. You can send your questions for Tim in advance to [email protected]

Monday 10 May: 4:30 to 5:30pm

Book the Zoom workshop with Tim here

Order Tim’s book on amazon Smile here

Meet Claire Alexander

The Nystagmus Network welcomes children aged 7 years and up to a FREE interactive online workshop with Claire Alexander, author of A Little Bit Different and her new book A Little Bit of Courage. Claire will share her passion for writing and illustration her inspiration and what she plans to write about next. You can send your questions for Claire in advance to [email protected]

Thursday 17 June: 4:30 to 5:30pm

Book the Zoom workshop with Claire here

Order Claire’s books on Amazon Smile here and here