What’s been happening at Brilliant Publications?

We’re 30 years old – so we’d like to give you a present!

I’ve just realised that it was 30 years ago this month that we brought out our first book, How to be Brilliant at Writing Stories. We’ve been so busy working on our new books, that the anniversary has snuck up on us!

To celebrate this momentous anniversary, I’d like to give you a copy of How to be Brilliant at Writing Stories. We are still selling the book, albeit just in e-book form. Although some bits of the design look a bit dated now, I’m pleased with how well the ideas have stood the test of time. To download your free copy of the e-book, please click here.

How to be Brilliant at Writing Stories cover

How did Brilliant Publications get its name?

Brilliant Publications started as a partnership between Irene Yates and me. Back in 1992, when photocopiers in schools were still something quite new, we saw a gap in the market for high quality photocopiable resources. We were very enthusiastic about how our ideas would inspire and motivate students. We kept saying ‘That’s brilliant’ every time either of us suggested anything. Eventually we chose Brilliant Publications as the company name!

We’ve come a long way since those discussions around our kitchen tables! Brilliant Publications is now a limited company and we have over 300 titles in print, covering most curriculum areas. I’m proud that we are still keeping to our vision of creating easy to use resources, featuring engaging approaches to learning, which will inspire, motivate and challenge pupils.

What is special about this sentence?

I recently came across this sentence and thought I’d share it with you:

‘A rough-coated, dough-faced, thoughtful ploughman strode through the streets of Scarborough; after falling into a slough, he coughed and hiccoughed.’

Did you spot all the different pronunciations of ‘ough’? There are eight (or nine) different ways of pronouncing ‘ough’ – depending on whether you include place names.

Here are the most common ones:

  • ‘oh’ as in though (rhymes with ‘toe’)
  • ‘uff’ as in rough (like in ‘ruffle’)
  • ‘off’ as in cough (like in ‘coffee’)
  • ‘ooh’ as in through (rhymes with ‘boo’)
  • ‘awt’ as in thought (although with some accents it is closer to ‘ort’)
  • ‘ow’ as in bough (rhymes with ‘how’)

The word ‘slough’ is particularly fascinating as it has three different pronunciations, depending on what you mean:

  • sl-uff (rhymes with ‘stuff’): to shed something, such as a skin
  • sl-ew (rhymes with ‘stew’): a swamp
  • sl-ow (rhymes with ‘cow’): the name of a town in England

Isn’t English an amazing language!

With best wishes for next week!

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