What can Creative Daydream do for you?

What can Creative Daydream do for you?

OK, it’s been a while. I haven’t blogged for a few months, so I’m back! I thought it was high time that I wrote about some projects I have recently worked on, so that you had some idea of what I could do for you!

The last six months have been busy, with a wide range of projects making their way onto my desk…

Project managing an exhibition stand: over the past two years, I have put together the concept and graphics for Scripture Union‘s exhibition stand at the Hand in Hand Conference, and then used those to create stands for other exhibitions too. 2016 was no different and, in early February, I made my way to Eastbourne with a mix of new and repurposed graphics stands, leaflets and giveaways. Over the weekend, I also worked on the stand and it was great to talk to children’s workers from across the country. One of the resources the stand was promoting was…

Guardians of Ancora: my writing of this ground-breaking Bible reading game app for children has continued. I’ve been part of the team for about three years now and it’s great to see the game in action. Recent work has included writing scripts for the Easter parts of the game as well as putting together lots of back story to appear on the revamped Guardians of Ancora supporting website.

Editorial project management: it’s been good to work with a former colleague, Nina Marcel, on resources produced by Christian Education. I was brought in to help out with ongoing projects, RE Ideas and Essential RE, while Nina focused on an enormous, brand new series of RE resources for schools.

Rewriting a training course: over the past two years, I have delivered a training course in children’s ministry for the Diocese of London. This year, it was decided that the course needed a revamp, to include new elements and reshuffle the existing new ministry. So, I rewrote the material, created new PowerPoint presentations and handouts, and then delivered the new course to the good children’s workers of Neasden. That course proved invaluable in refining the new parts of the material. Onward to courses in Twickenham, Shadwell, Chelsea and Tottenham!

Writing a magazine column: in 2016, the magazine of the Mother’s Union, called Families First, features a column written by me! Being a single man with no children, this seems an unlikely choice, but it’s going well so far. Most of the columns seem to include focusing on my own ineptitude, but hopefully despite this, they will help to bridge the gaps that can often open up between single people and parents.

Premier Childrenswork: I’ve extended my time on Premier Childrenswork to include some commissioning and subbing work, on top of the writing responsibilities I’ve had for the past three years. It’s been enjoyable to get more involved in the work of this magazine.

If anything here makes you think I might be the right person for a job you need doing, then get in touch!

Three is the magic number

Three is the magic number

On 5 November 2012, I officially started my own business. I became self-employed, freelance, whatever you call it. And it was perhaps the most un-thought-through thing I have done. Looking back, I can see that I really didn’t know what was going to happen. Armed only with my redundancy money, a handful of contacts and a sense of overwhelming optimism, I set out quite unaware of the personal magnitude of what I was doing.

Work came slowly at first. I would go on walks round Wolverton, where I live, thinking, praying, wondering where I might go to get more contacts, more contracts, more jobs. It was easier than sitting, staring at the keyboard. Some people told me that when they started, they never struggled for work (so what was I doing wrong?), while others said that it took them four years to get going (could I wait that long?). However, slowly but surely, one client led to another, and another, and another. Regular work built up and I started to risk agreeing to more ambitious projects. I passed my first anniversary, then my second and now I have reached my third in rude health.

Now my business is well and truly a toddler. And I would like to thank the people who supported me at the start – my family and friends, my old work colleagues and my first clients. You all helped to lay the foundations for what has turned into quite a successful venture! Thanks for being actively supportive and for just being there. Thanks for those initial jobs and for passing my name onto other potential clients. Thanks for being patient and understanding.

I am officially listed as a ‘sole trader’, but I am anything but. I couldn’t do what I do without that network of supporters, clients and cheerleaders. If I could bake you all a cake, I would, but that would take a while. So I’ll just content myself with saying THANK YOU. And who knows? I might just surprise you with a Victoria sponge sometime soon.

Gelatin-based confectionery and other lessons

Gelatin-based confectionery and other lessons

Well, Creative Daydream has been going for 18 months and I’ve learnt quite a lot. Particularly:

1 I have little self-control if there’s an open bag of marshmallows in the house.

2 If you’re going to be part of a meeting via Skype, you’ll spend an hour staring at the top of people’s heads.

3 It’s not going to go well if you put a TV programme on ‘in the background’.

4 Going to the supermarket at 10 on Monday morning means that you avoid the crowds, but also that the aisles will be populated with pensioners who stop suddenly for no apparent reason.

5 Searching iTunes for old Eurovision songs is not an acceptable way to spend the working day. (But you do rediscover beauties like this – I love a song with whistling…)

On the other hand, I’ve had a great time writing, editing, training and generally being creative for companies and organisations such as the Diocese of London, Dubit, Leprosy Mission, Dodo and Co, Shooting Star Chase and Childrenswork magazine. And I’m really looking forward to what the next 18 months might bring!

If you’ve got a project that requires a great way with words, a hundred ideas or a warm presenting style, then get in touch. What can Creative Daydream do for you?


Thinking big!

Thinking big!

Recently I completed a project for Scripture Union to create their stand at the Hand in Hand conference in Eastbourne. SU had secured a large, but strangely laid out space in the conference venue, called the Floral Bistro. They wanted this to be a flexible stand and seminar venue, both promoting SU’s various ministries and hosting seminars throughout the conference.

Working with Jim at Dodo and Co, based in Newport Pagnell, we had to design for a space which we hadn’t seen and for which we had no accurate measurements! What was clear though was that the space was large and pull-up banners just wouldn’t be up to the task. In addition, how were we going to pull together the four or five different strands of activity SU wanted to promote without losing a strong brand identity?

SU wanted to use a vine-leaf design used on some previous marketing materials and this proved to be the unifying factor of the design and layout. We assigned each of the ministry strands a product and gave each product a ‘logo’ (something from the product design). These then featured on the leaves of five free-standing vines, guiding people to different parts of the space. We came across some vinyl banners produced by Nimlok, which measured 2.5m x 2.5m, and decided to go BIG.

Six of these banners, together with the free-standing vines, created the visual impact the space demanded. Coloured table cloths and stickers pulled the space together creating a welcoming and friendly environment. Some even declared it the best stand they had worked on!

We had to overcome some issues (the graphics were so large that we had to hire a bigger vehicle to transport them and we had an unexpected limit placed on us for seminar attendance), but these were solved by a resourceful team working on the stand.

In the end, this was a hugely enjoyable, if unexpected, project to work on. I’d love to do more – want an exhibition stand space creating?!

SU stand entranceThe vertical vineGiveaway packs


One year old

One year old

This week sees Creative Daydream’s first birthday! I can hardly believe where the time has gone, but so much has happened over the past year. I’ve learnt a lot about being self-employed, a lot about what kind of work I do and don’t want to do, and a lot about myself!

I’ve become familiar with the tax and NI system, I’ve created new routines to keep myself focused and I’ve consumed more coffee than is probably good for me. I’ve discovered that I don’t miss being in an office as much as I thought I would, but I do miss the inconsequential chat that you get when you work in close proximity to others.

I’ve really enjoyed most of the jobs I’ve taken on – a bit of editing, a bit of training and some creative work too. But there’s been much more writing than I thought, and a few months into being my own boss, I realised I was a professional writer! So that’s what I tell people when they ask what I do: ‘I’m a writer.’ And it makes me smile every time I say it.

So, here’s to the next year. But before then, a huge thank you to those who have helped me out, given me advice and encouragement, and prayed for me. And thanks to my clients – I’ve loved working with you and I hope we can do more in the future 🙂


(To celebrate, I made myself a giant iced bun. It was amazing!)

What can we do together?

It’s been great to work with some new clients over the last few weeks. The Leprosy Mission Trading supports the Leprosy Mission’s work with those suffering from leprosy across the world. I’ve written part of an Easter fun book for the Leprosy Mission catalogue, provisionally called Easter Fun – look out for that one in their brochure!

Shooting Star Chase is a children’s hospice charity supporting families in south-west London, Surrey and West Sussex. I’ll be taking on some editorial work with their communications team.

Both are top charities, helping people in need in different contexts. It’s been a joy to join them in their work. Check them out!

Leprosy Mission: www.leprosymission.org.uk
Shooting Star Chase: www.shootingstarchase.org.uk

But what about your business? Could I help you with writing, editorial or creative consultancy? If so, get in touch!