In the run up to Christmas, the Madeleine Milburn Literary Agency will be posting an entry from one of our authors each day, offering anything from writing tips and their inspiration, to Christmas memories and their wishes for the year to come.
Do you believe?
I love the idea of Santa Claus. As a child, the excitement of going to bed on Christmas Eve was often too much to bear, knowing that this great jolly fellow was travelling across the world giving presents to every little girl and boy. Soon he would be in my house, leaving presents under my tree. It was the stuff of fairy tales; magic, flying reindeer and a sleigh big enough for millions of presents and as children we lapped it up.
I love the lengths parents will go to purely to keep this magic alive for their children. We didn’t have an open chimney when I was younger. We had some electric fire but that was OK because Santa had a magic key. We didn’t write letters to Santa, we simply told Mum and Dad what we wanted and they phoned Santa up and placed the order, a little like Argos I imagine.
My Goddaughter writes her letter to Santa every year and throws it up the chimney. The first year that Megan was old enough to do this, the letter went up the chimney and came back down a few seconds later only to catch fire on the roaring flames. Megan stared at her letter in dismay as it crumpled in the heat, but her Mum quickly hugged her and told her that the smoke would take the words to Santa. Of course she accepted it because as a child you trust your parents completely.
But should the belief in magic fade just because we are now older and supposedly wiser? No absolutely not. That’s why I love books, because amongst their pages is the ability to transport people to magical worlds with fantastical creatures, to introduce people to rugged heroes and brave heroines, where the impossible is possible and the ordinary is lifted to the extraordinary. We go on journeys to exotic locations, we make friends and we fall in love with characters more real and tangible than a mythical fat man in a red suit.