Tuesday, January 1
Wrote all a.m. Went up to town to tea with A. May. Had tea at Waring & Gillow’s & then at Dickin & Jones! Home at 7. Bridge till bed.

Aunt May, Enid's father's sister, was the professional pianist in whose footsteps Enid had been expected to follow until she told her father that such a career wasn't suitable for her. Ultimately, she hoped to be a professional writer, and she was making solid progress towards that goal.

Enid worked as a teacher at this time, but as the diary starts she was on holiday after the Michaelmas term, living in a spare room of the house she regularly stayed at during holidays and weekends, in Beckenham, south London. To go up to central London, as she did to start the new year, would have taken about half an hour by train to Victoria.

Wednesday, January 2
Out till 10.30. Wrote all a.m. & afternoon. Copied out Bimbo & Podge booklets till supper. Bridge till bed.

Although a full-time teacher, Enid had been a regular writer since her teens. Two years before, J. Savile had published her book of poems, Child Whispers, and, in 1923 a follow up, Real Fairies. By 1924, Birn Brothers were publishing booklets by Enid Blyton and 'Bimbo and Podge' may have been one of theirs. Tony Summerfield, the Blyton bibliographer, has had difficulty tracing all the small booklets that Birns Bros made using Enid's work. The family firm did not keep good records and a copy of each publication was not sent to the British Library.

Thursday, January 3
To London. Saw Dr Wilson at Nelson’s. It’s definitely decided I’m to do 36 books for them! To Birns. Gave me cheque for £38.17s. Home at 3. Read. Bridge till bed.

As we'll see, Thomas Nelson did publish half a dozen assorted 'readers' for children by Enid Blyton in 1925. At the meeting, Dr Wilson may have shown Enid examples from Nelson's 'Golden River' series, which consisted of stories retold for young children. These books - such as Gulliver in Lilliput, Aesop's Fables, Robinson Crusoe - had all been rewritten by different writers, and it may be - given what was to come - Dr Wilson was looking for an author who could turn her hand to any world classic, and make it readable for children.

The £38 from Birns is the equivalent of over £2,000 in 2017, and in 1923 Blyton earned £300 from her writing (£16,000 today) so, what with her teacher's pay as well, Enid must have been comfortably off.

Friday, January 4
Wrote letters and went out in a.m. Margery Hunt came to ask me if I could help her get a job. I went to Richmond to tea at Rowleys & A.R. played me the settings to my lyrics. They are ripping. Home at 8. Bridge till bed.

Alex Rowley was a musician working with Enid on a book of songs published by the above mentioned J. Savile.

Saturday, January 5.
Out shopping til 12. Wrote till tea. Read & played bridge till bed. U. Arthur came in.

I suppose that U. Arthur is an Uncle Arthur, though I don't know who that is. (He's not the husband of May.)

Sunday, January 6.
Wrote all a.m. Read till tea. Wrote letters till 6. Chapel with Mums. Read till bed.

'Mums' is Mabel Attenborough, sister of the father of Mary Attenborough who was a close friend of Enid's from school. Though twenty years older than Enid, Mabel also became a close friend and an advisor, as Barbara Stoney mentions in her biography of EB.

What else can usefully be said at the end of this first week of the 1924 diary? The Beckenham house that Enid was staying in was the house on Oakwood Avenue that belonged to Mabel Attenborough's parents ('Grandpa' and 'Grandma' as Enid called them). That's the blue circle near the right edge of the map of modern Beckenham, below. Ironic that Enid's real mother was living elsewhere in Beckenham, in the house (of five Beckenham houses that Enid lived in as a child) on Westfield Road, that's the red circle closest to the centre of the map. By 1924 'Mum' was no longer central to her life. Mums was.

Screen shot 2017-12-11 at 15.57.02

For comparative purposes, below is a map of Beckenham that dates from 1930. Note that there there was a wood outside the house of the Attenboroughs'. Its importance to Enid will become obvious by May, 1924.


I'll show photos of the actual house later, when its more relevant to what's going on in the diary.

As we'll see, at this stage in her life, Sunday was Enid's main time to write. Though having said that, her work log reveals that she wrote two poems on Tuesday, Jan 1, three poems on Wednesday, Jan 2 and two more poems on Saturday, Jan 5.

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Cute though that may be, if all Enid Blyton’s work in 1924 was written in such a register, I wouldn’t be putting this material together. So don’t worry. It isn’t.

Enid was publishing something every week in
Teachers World. In 1923 she'd published 88 stories, poems, plays and reviews in this weekly magazine for teachers published by Evans Brothers, located in Russell Square. And from 4 July 1923, she had contributed a weekly 'talk', which was a 'From My Window' column that told the reader something of the author's personality and thoughts.

Thanks to the aforementioned work log that Enid kept, now in the Seven Stories archive, we know that on this first Sunday of the year, while staying at 34 Oakwood Avenue to whose garden the column no doubt refers, Enid wrote the following piece, though it didn't appear in
Teachers World until ten days later.

Screen shot 2018-01-19 at 11.06.46

What does this piece say about the person who wrote it? Well, for a start, that she liked her own company. Also, that she was a close observer of the world around her. And that she could write with economy and precision. But there will be plenty of other examples to hone in on a fuller answer to that question.

In a sense, these 'From My Window' pieces were an opportunity for Enid to flesh out or supplement her diary. True, the above piece is not a particularly good example of that, as Enid is not talking about her social self, but of something private (yet universal). Never mind, because in the months to come there will be many examples where the diary really does feed into the 'From My Window' talk, and
vice versa.

As I say, Enid had been writing her weekly 'From My Window' column since July 1923. That first column began with something of a manifesto:

"Will you write a column for The Teachers World?" was a question put to me recently.

'I would love to," I answered, "but what about? Salaries, conferences, lock-outs? Impossible, I couldn't."

"No, other things you're interested in, and that might interest other teachers - books and theatres, education, children, Nature..."

Thus it was settled and I visioned a new and delightful task before me every week.

So how was the column shaping up after six months? Enid had written 'On Genius and Childhood', 'On Advertisements', 'On being Surprised', 'On Being Like Oneself'. She had reviewed a book she'd read and plays she'd been to see. Unusually for Enid, she was writing for an adult audience. As we'll see, in 1924 the columns would come to be revealingly autobiographical. Or should I say allusively autobiographical? Anyway, a vivid and intriguing picture will emerge over the months of this crucial year for Enid.


Monday, January 7
Wrote all a.m. Met Mollie & Wilfred at Victoria & took them to see the Windmill Man. They loved it. Mrs Sayer & Kathleen met us afterwards & we all had tea together. Home at 7. Bridge till bed.

Mollie and Wilfred are two of the children from Enid's school. Enid wrote up their day at the theatre for her Weekly Talk for Teachers World, without changing the children's names. But she didn't do that until Sunday, so that's where I'll include it.

Tuesday, January 8
Wrote all a.m. To A. Maud’s to tea as Peggy was 4 today. She was very sweet. Home at 7.15. Bridge till bed.

According to Enid's work log, all she wrote that morning was a five-verse poem called 'At Night'.

Wednesday, January 9
Wrote all a.m. & till 3.30. Read till tea. Small Mabel & Barbara came to tea. We played squails with them till 7. Bridge till bed.

'Bridge till bed' is not code for some early Twentieth Century vice. It just means that Enid played the card game bridge, which required a good memory and the ability to work out what cards the other players were holding. Enid had a photographic memory and was a regular bridge player for much of her adult life.

She wrote three poems this Wednesday, her work log informs us. One of them, 'Silver Kittens', would appear in Teachers World. Perhaps here I should say more about that publication. The page that Enid's poems and stories appeared - as opposed to her weekly Talk - was headed 'A NUMBER OF THINGS'. The sub-heading was 'A WEEKLY PAGE FOR BOYS AND GIRLS' and so this particular page was intended to be made available by teachers to their pupils. The page was also headed by this bit of verse:

"The world is so full of a number of things,
I'm sure we should all be as happy as kings."

Teachers World
appeared every Wednesday, with an extra issue (without one of Enid's Talks, but with a whole-page poem by her) on the first Friday of each month. The issue that came out on this day, Wednesday, January 9th, comprised 44 pages, each approximately A3 in size. I had it in front of me in a library recently. An unsigned editorial on page 2 is followed by a literary page. After that, 'news and views' pages on the left are faced, on the right, with full page advertisements for things like fountain pens, encyclopaedias and educational magazines. The features gets more niche-orientated, and the ads become half-page and less, as one moves towards the middle of the paper, which consists of a two-page photographic spread. Thereafter, ads are on left-hand pages and copy on the right. Enid's 'From My Window' column appears on page 31, as does a 'nature lesson' column written by another regular contributor, as does a third column, an educational report that is being presented in weekly chunks. Towards the back of the issue are a large number of small ads for teaching posts, while both the inside back cover and the back cover itself are full-page ads for correspondence courses for men and women hoping to become teachers.

In other words,
Teachers World was not primarily a literary journal, but essentially a trade one. However, as Enid was practising as a teacher, it would seem to have been an appropriate place for her to emerge as a writer.

Thursday, January 10
To town. Saw Birn’s. Wants me to do a jolly decent book to be brought out regardless of expense. To Cassells & saw Packer [?] No difficulty about copyright. Dinner at Wallises. To Teachers World. Saw Allen. Talked of new ideas for poems etc. To Davidsons & I went to see his stall at University College. Home at 8.30. Bridge till bed. Pollock wrote and asked if I’d collaborate with him. It was a lovely letter.

What a day! - four meetings with publishers and a letter from the books editor at one of the more prestigious literary publisher of the time, George Newnes Limited.

Let's quickly introduce a few people. First, E.H..Allen, who was the editor at Evans Brothers, though the assistant editor that Enid dealt with on a weekly basis was Miss Hilda Russell Cruise. Second, Hugh Pollock, who had been the books editor at George Newnes Limited since 1923. Enid may have been submitting manuscripts to him. Enid's relationship with this man would soon come to dominate her diary.

For now I should say more about the meeting with E.H. Allen. It would have taken place at Montague House, HQ of Teachers World, in the south corner of Russell Square. The map below is a modern one, but the maroon-circle-enclosing-a-book symbol represents the approximate position of the now demolished Montague House.

Screen shot 2018-01-01 at 12.22.36

Monatgue House had some connection with the British Museum. I suspect it was destroyed when the whole site was redeveloped so that the British Museum could have a suitably massive base.

A few months earlier, Enid had commemorated one of her trips to Montague House with a poem, which began:


I wonder if young Enid lit up E.H. Allen’s day in January, 1924, in the way that the squirrel had done for Enid a year before. Surely she did, in which case the reader might accept that the final verse of the above poem might have been going through his head after the meeting.

Friday, January 11
Wrote all a.m. Went out till 3.45. Read. Wrote letters till 7. Bridge till bed.

Saturday, January 12
Wrote all a.m. & afternoon. Went out after tea & Bought some daffodils. Bridge till bed. Memo. Do Sunday poem.

Sunday, January 13
Wrote all a.m. & till 3.30. Read. To Chapel in p.m. with Mums. Read till bed.

Enid's work log reveals that she wrote two poems this Sunday, 'Fairy Footprints' and 'Sunday'. She also wrote her weekly talk, taking a completely different approach than she had done the previous week. Or maybe not so different. Both involve close observation by her, and meticulous description.

Screen shot 2018-01-19 at 11.06.56
Enid has obviously observed the children closely as the play has taken place. Knowing what children respond best to, and exactly how they respond to it, would be crucial to the success of her writing.

Sitting there for three hours, Enid must have ruminated about morality tales: How far should a story-teller for children equate goodness with reward and badness with punishment? For isn't the real lesson for children that goodness is its own reward - knowing that one has made other people happy, rather than sad, through one's behaviour?

I wonder if a corner of her mind was thinking of "Windmill Man" when Enid wrote
The Adventures of the Wishing Chair more than a decade later, featuring, as it does, a young girl called Mollie.

As I say, as well as her weekly talk, Enid wrote a couple of poems this Sunday, including one called
Sunday that would be given a whole page to itself in the extra issue of Teachers World published on the first Friday of February. I'll reproduce it here, not least because it was also illustrated by Phyllis Chase, Enid's old friend from St Christopher's school. More about Phyllis soon enough. More about Bracken Hill and Cuckoo Lane, ditto.


The poem is a slightly odd one for a 26-year-old to be writing. A young woman whose father left the family home when she was 13 (and who died in 1920), and whose mother was strongly against story-telling of any kind. Perhaps it's a bit of wishful thinking on the poet's part.

Still, the fourth verse, that starts 'Always in the afternoon' and talks of long walks on a Sunday with her father, in Beckenham, is probably an accurate memory.

Anyway, I think Enid, if mostly because of Monday, Thursday and Sunday, has had a lovely week... the second of 1924... yes, a lovely week.


Monday, January 14
Wrote all a.m. Went by myself to Croydon & bought a grey jumper & grey corduroy velvet skirt. Bridge till bed.

Tuesday, January 15
Out all a.m. with Mums. Wrote all afternoon & evening till 9.30. Bridge till bed.

Wednesday, January 16
Wrote all a.m. Read & slept till tea. Read & wrote letters till supper. Mums went to a Sunday School supper. Ugh!! Bridge till bed.

Enid wrote four stories that morning. Little Miss Muffit and the spider; Jack Horner, who pulled out a plum; Humpty Dumpty, who had a great fall; and Cat-Who-Went-To-See-The Queen. Each amounts to an unfamiliar way into the world of a familiar nursery tale. The moral of these tales is not so much 'know yourself' as 'know your place' or 'know the environment in which you find yourself'. Very pertinent to children. I imagine that being read aloud these stories could empower the young mind. That's why these stories appeared in Teachers World, so that other teachers could read them aloud and a whole generation got to engage with Little Miss Muffitt and co.

Each nursery tale was illustrated by Phyllis Chase, the aforementioned chum from St Christopher's school who had provided the cover for Enid's first book. As we'll see Enid and 'Phil' will regularly meet up in London over the following months.

Thursday, January 17
Wrote all a.m. & afternoon, as I got letters from Cassells, Newnes & Birns all asking urgently for things. Went out with Mums at 6 & bought her a new jumper. Bridge till bed.

Enid responded immediately to the letter from Cassels and wrote a 500-word story, 'The Tinker Elf'.

Friday, January 18
Wrote all a.m. & afternoon till 3.30. Read till 6. Wrote letters till 9.30. Sent off my 3rd book of poems to Davidson!

Enid wrote a poem called 'The Wedding in the Woods' and a story called 'The Nasty Gobbler' for Cassells. Thursday's and Friday's work was sold to them the following week. Tracing the work into published books is not so easy. There were a lot of small books and anthologies published by Cassells in 1924 and 1925 that included material by Enid Blyton. According to Tony Summerfield, the xpert on this, these were sometimes not credited to her. Also, some titles may have been changed for publication, making them harder to track down, especially as the little books published by Cassells (and Birn) are so scarce nowadays. In The Enid Blyton Society's cave of Books, there is no entry for either The Nasty Gobble or The Tinker Elf. However, 'The Wedding in the Woods' appeared in both Bo-Peep and Joybells, published by Cassells in 1924.

Saturday, January 19
Went out by myself & did the shopping. Went up to town to see “The Little Minister’ with Mums. It was sweet. Home at 6.30. Bridge till bed.

Sunday, January 20
Wrote till 12.30. Read all afternoon & slept! To Chapel in p.m. with Mums. Had Mr. Roy Henderson for soloist, he had a lovely voice. Read till bed.

Here's the piece that Enid wrote that Sunday morning:

Screen shot 2018-01-19 at 11.07.06

Oh, that is a bad misprint in the penultimate paragraph. It should read 'my' ear not 'by' ear. Enid would have been crestfallen when she read it. What a nonsense it makes of her climactic scene.

I feel the need to say something on behalf of the maligned author...

Enid makes her way to Russell Square, enters Montague House and is soon standing at the desk of the editor of
Teachers World, her finger pointing at the offending 'by' in her copy of the current week's issue.

"Can I ask you a question, Mr Allen?" she asks. As she speaks, blood drips from her cut ear down onto the journal. "Do you ever get tired of editing? Or is it so exciting that your concentration
never wavers."

Mr Allen says nothing, so Enid carries on. "Is it your burfday, Mr Allen? Would you like me to cut your hair for a burfday present? Would you,
would you?"

When Enid has left his office, and he has recovered his equanimity, Mr Allen's thoughts drift to an old poem he'd published. What was it called again? The Tiger in Russell Square!


Monday, January 21
Railway strike began. Mums & I had dinner with S. Army & afterwards I helped Mums with crèche till 3.30. Then trained to Kingston & bussed to Surbiton & Hook. Got room ready for school.

Enid had been working as a teacher in a private home, Southernhay, 207 Hook Road, Surbition, Surrey. The job began four years before, when Mabel Attenborough told Enid that Horace Thompson, an architect, whose wife Gerturude had been seriously ill, was looking for a nursery governess for his four boys, the oldest of whom was eight. Over time, as people heard about the successful 'school', other pupils joined the class. Barbra Stoney tells us that altogether about twelve children were involved.

This is the building as it looks nowadays.

Screen shot 2018-01-01 at 16.35

The map below, although it's a modern one, shows that the school (blue circle nearest the centre of the map, below GMB) was set back from Hook Road and that there was a park on the other side of it.

Screen shot 2018-01-01 at 17.00.51

Waterloo is the London station Enid used to go to and from Surbiton, whereas Victoria is the station serving Beckenham. The modern map below shows Enid's weekend home in Beckenham - blue circle bottom right. Surbiton, where she worked during the week, is marked with a blue circle bottom left, but, because London transport is primarily radial, to get from work to home and vice versa she had to train into the centre of London and out again, via Waterloo and Victoria, the red circles. Which she did just once a week.

Screen shot 2018-02-08 at 12.09.07

This being a week when strikes were disrupting things, Enid was varying her routine. Hence her making a note of it in her diary for Monday, January 21.

Tuesday, January 22
School. All back save Donald. Went out shopping till 6.30. Got school things ready till bed.

David, Brian, Peter and John were the names of the four Thompson boys, Donald must have been a neighbour's child. Just as Mollie Sayer, the girl pupil that Enid took to the theatre with Wilfrid, was the daughter of a neighbour. I like to think that's her sitting in front of her teacher in the photograph below. In that radiant light.


Wednesday, January 23
School. Handwork till 4. Read, played whist with children, & did rug [?] till bed.

Thursday, January 24
School. Mollie’s music till 4. Played whist with kids till 6. Wrote & did rug [?] till bed.

The work log shows that the writing Enid was doing that day was about Brer Rabbit. Three stories of about 1000 words each: 'Brer Rabbit Goes Out To Dinner'; 'Brer Rabbit and the Tar Baby', 'Brer Rabbit gets a New Riding Horse'.

It seems reasonable to suppose that when Dr Wilson met Enid in the first week of January, he gave her a copy of the 1923 edition of
Uncle Remus that Nelson's had published in their Golden River series, stories simply written for young children.


Only the book is not so simply written, and that may have been the point. The author is Joel Chandler Harris and he sets the stories of Brer Rabbit, Brer Fox, and co in the Deep South of America. 'Uncle Remu's tells the story in a rich Afro-American dialect. Enid did away with Uncle Remus, and the Afro-American dialect, but kept the charm and the chutzpah of the originals. She also kept the original order of the stories, more or less. In writing the three stories mentioned above, she's retold the first seven chapters of Uncle Remus, in the same order, only leaving out chapter three, concerning Brer Coon and Brer Possum, and chapter five, concerning Noah's Ark.

The illustrations in the 1923 book are by Harry Rountree (who subsequently illustrated
The Children at Cherry Tree Farm) and I suspect Enid may have been inspired by them in the same way she was inspired, thirty-years later, by the drawings of a funny creature called Noddy, made by Beck.

Screen shot 2018-01-19 at 16.17.45

The Joel Chandler Harris text that the above illustration refers to: '"Bred en bawn in a brier patch, Brer Fox - bred en bawn in a brier-patch!" en wid dat he skip out des ez lively ez a cricket in de embers.'

You might have to read that twice to get the meaning of 'des ez'.

Friday, January 25
School. Bussed to Kingston, trained to Waterloo. Bussed home. Strike still on. Home at 5. Read & played bridge till bed.

Saturday, January 26
Wrote till 11. Went out shopping with Mums till 1.15. Read & wrote till tea. Listened in & read & played bridge till bed. We’ve got the wireless put in today.

Again, Enid was writing about Brer Rabbit. Another three stories: 'Brer Fox gets Brer Rabbit into a Hole', 'Brer Rabbit gets up the Chimney' and 'Brer Fox Tries Again'. All of which appear in Uncle Remus. A Brer Rabbit books was sold to Nelson's in May, and when Tales of Brer Rabbit appeared in 1925, the six stories written this week were the first six (of 10) in the book.

Sunday, January 27
Wrote all a.m. & till 3. Read till tea. To Chapel in p.m. with Mums. Read & listened in till bed.

As usual, Enid wrote her
Teachers World talk on a Sunday. 'Hoar Frost' on Jan 6. 'Only Just Us' on Jan 13. 'On Asking Questions' on Jan 20 and now 'The Wild Garden'. Could the wild garden be the brier patch that Enid had been born and bred in? Does the piece take us back to the same garden Enid wrote about at the beginning of the month? I'll address the latter point after you've read the article.

Screen shot 2018-01-19 at 11.19.02

Below is a bird's eye view of the front and back garden at Southernhay as it is today.

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If there ever was a wild garden at Southernhay, it's not there now. Though back in 1924 the garden may have been bigger, as some of the nearby houses are relatively new.

Below is how the garden looks at 34 Oakwood Avenue, the Attenboroughs' house in Beckenham, with a back garden that goes back a long and mysterious way.

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Although there seems to be no overlap between the gardens described in 'Hoar-Frost', with its shrubbery, 'the dwelling place of limes, hollies, oaks, tall bushes and one big cedar', and 'The Wild Garden', with its wild stretch of grass, its arch, blackberries, apple trees and pear trees, I believe Enid is talking about the same garden. That is, the garden in Beckenham, a garden that Enid has grown so attached to over the years.

But with these aerial photographs, I've taken us through to summer. Which is getting ahead of ourselves. So let's get back on track.


Monday, January 28
Left early to catch train but had to wait till 8 as strike was still on. Went to Elephant & bussed to Waterloo. Trained to Kingston & arrived at Hook at 10.0. School. Mollie’s music. Read till bed. Mr Turketin [?] came to supper.

Tuesday, January 29
School. Handwork till 4. To tea at Sayer’s. Wrote till 9.30 & then did rug [?].

Enid wrote two more Brer Rabbit stories on this day. 'Brer Rabbit Goes Down a Hole' and 'Brer Rabbit Runs a Race'. The latter is called 'Mr Rabbit finds his match at last' in Uncle Remus, and is the story where Brer Terrapin tricks Brer Rabbit by using doppelgangers to win a running race against the rabbit. The trickster tricked!

Wednesday, January 30
School. Painting till 4. Wrote & did rug till bed.

What is this rug business? I don't know. But I do know that Enid wrote the final two (of ten) Brer Rabbit stories for the first to be finished of the Nelson Readers. (Though it came to be number 2 in the series.) 'Brer Fox Goes Hunting' and 'Brer Rabbit Nearly Gets Caught' were the two stories.

There are ten stories in the little book, presumably the same ten stories that Enid wrote in four days, all based on the contents of Uncle Remus. She would go on to write over three-hundred Brer Rabbit stories in her writing life, visiting certain of the stories - such as ‘The Tar Baby’ and ‘Brer Rabbit Goes Fishing’ - several times.

The book starts with Enid Blyton’s first go at the Tar Baby story. In future tellings she would add details, change tone, as she used her excellent memory and her ongoing imagination. But this is how it all began:


Thursday, January 31
School. Mollie’s music till 4. Did my rug all evening. Mr & Mrs Stanley came to spend the night. They’re prospective minister for Kingston C.C. Pollock phoned up to ask me to call tomorrow. Had sweet letter from Jean. Margaret Amiss [?].

That is a good way to leave January, 1924. With Brer Fox – sorry, Hugh Pollock - editor at George Newnes, asking Enid to come and see him.

But first, I like to think this sums up Enid’s first month of this special year in her life:

Enid 1924 January TW1-4 - Untitled Page

The above image is primarily a drawing made by Phyllis Chase for an Enid Blyton poem called 'January' that was published in
Teachers World in January, 1923. Phyllis, Enid's old school friend, from St Christopher’s in Beckenham and her collaborator since 1920, will be very much part of this story from February, 1924, so I wanted to properly include her in January. Besides, her work is so evocative of childhood, and of emerging from it. Indeed let's have another variation of it.

Enid 1924 January

Yes, that is a good way to leave January, 1924. With Brer Pollock about to emerge from a hole in the ice in Enid's wild garden. After all, hadn't she drawn the hole in the ice with her writing pencil? Wasn't it time for the 26-year-old to leave behind the dolls that she’d outgrown?

Phyllis Chase and Enid Blyton enjoyed a fertile, creative partnership. Enid Blyton and Mabel Attenborough made thoroughly good companions. But were these seemingly solid teams about to be shaken by the emergence of a new pairing?

February crouches, ready to pounce.


1) Thanks to Alexandra Antscherl at Hachette for permission to publish online Enid Blyton's diary and her essays in
Teachers World.

2) Thanks to the anonymous volunteer at Seven Stories who transcribed Enid's diary for 1924. I'll add his/her name when I discover it.

3) Other Enid Blyton poems and stories written in January 1924, which appeared in
Teachers World but are not reproduced above, can be seen in the Cave of Books (look under 'periodicals') in website of the Enid Blyton Society, the bibliographical work of Tony Summerfield.