FICTION came in a flash for children inspired to write their own speedy short stories by a North Yorkshire author who visited their school.

Year 3 and 4 pupils at Barnard Castle Preparatory School, in Teesdale, set their imaginations to work on their own stories based around a paragraph from Emma Warner-Reed’s latest book, Dotty and the Calendar House Key.

They also got the chance to ask the author how she got her ideas, why she killed the protagonist’s parents with a firework and where was the key in the title.

Warner-Reed, who lives near Masham and is a also lawyer, then introduced the concept of flash fiction and explained the skills needed to write a complete story in no more than 300 words.

She said: “The children had some really exciting ideas and the mind maps they came up with showed some wonderful imaginations.”

Year 3 teacher Tabitha Michelin, added: “The children loved the session and were incredibly creative with their ideas, inspired by Emma’s book and her life.”