Four-legged friends are the inspiration for Norwich writer’s debut book

Cressy McLaughlin, who studied English at the UEA, has fulfilled her dream of becoming a published a

Cressy McLaughlin, who studied English at the UEA, has fulfilled her dream of becoming a published author wth her first book - A Christmas Tail.PHOTO BY SIMON FINLAY - Credit: SIMON FINLAY

Our four-legged friends and their owners are the inspiration for a Norwich writer's debut book that also has a festive flavour.

A Christmas Tail has been written by Cressida McLaughlin and is a collection of four stories about Catherine 'Cat' Palmer, her dog walking business, and the people and pooches she meets along the way.

The four stories - Wellies and Westies, Sunshine and Spaniels, Raincoats and Retrievers and the seasonal Tinsel and Terriers - were first published as ebooks earlier this year, and HarperFiction has now published them together in a paperback book.

Mrs McLaughlin, 34, who studied English and later creative writing at the UEA and lives in Thorpe St Andrew, said having her first book published was the realisation of a long-held dream.

She said: 'After years and years of trying really hard to get published, it really is a dream come true for me. 'This whole year has been incredible really.

'It is so lovely to see my words turned into a beautiful book that people are enjoying reading.'

Mrs McLaughlin, who is married to David and works in the communications team at Norfolk County Council, first took up creative writing in an adult education course about eight years ago.

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She is now working on her next set of stories which will be called The Canal Boat Cafe. Initially the stories will be released as four ebooks from February before being published together in one book later in the year.

A Christmas Tail is available to buy now and costs £7.99.

Do you have a Norwich arts story? Email arts correspondent Emma Knights at

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