” Mike Nicholson is one of our favourite author events. I organise author events on a big scale, often bringing along 400 children, each of which Mike expertly manages to engage and involve throughout the event. The hour is a good mix of interesting and helpful creative writing facts often injected with humour, and much enjoyed by both children and staff. His Museum Mystery Squad books are extremely popular, along with Grimm and Catscape which appeal to the slightly older reader. We look forward to continue working with Mike on future events.” Gill Peters, ESMS (Erskine Stewart’s Melville Schools) Primary4-7 Librarian

“Visiting author Mike Nicholson appeared at Williamston during Scottish Book Week in November and took our school by storm. Children across the school from nursery to P7 were able to take part in imaginative and creative sessions pitched at exactly the right level to both inspire and enthuse children with reading and writing. An amazing buzz was felt throughout the school as children queued excitedly to buy his latest books. After his events a calmness descended as pupils devoured his imaginative stories and even reluctant readers fell silent. Many have experienced a new found courage to create their own stories and the excitement felt during Book Week continued as teachers made use of the excellent follow up materials provided by Mike.” Helen Mayhew, teaching staff, Williamston Primary School, Livingston

“Most importantly, Mike demonstrated an awareness that each child in his writing group required a different level of support in enable to succeed. Their engagement and enjoyment of the masterclass was clear to see and I’m confident we will have more children writing 50 word stories in the future!” Dave Thompson, teaching staff, Wardie Primary School after  Masterclass Creative Writing small group event

“Mike visited our pre school to read his new story ‘The Giant Who Snored’. The children loved his input as he involved them in several ways. In the 40 minute session he not only read his book but managed to include some drama, rhyming games, two lovely songs, a snore classifying task, and most fun of all a case full of ideas of how to stop a snorer! The pitch was perfect for our age range and I would strongly recommend other nurseries to invite him along!” Kyra Okoth, Teacher/Manager, Greenbank Pre School, Edinburgh

“Thank you very much for your sessions at the Dick Institute last week. As a result of your talk the class are planning to come back to the museum to find artefacts as the basis for their own stories – it was great to hear that your visit has given such inspiration to the class and the teachers.”  Rosie Milligan, Library Programmes Officer, East Ayrshire

“Mike was fantastic with the children and a gentle giant himself! The story is fantastic, especially the rhyming throughout. We all loved the catchy songs and can’t wait to download the audio book. He was very interactive and the props added so much to the telling of the story…..the overall experience was great fun and very age appropriate…would 100% invite him back.” Comments from staff at Bonnington House Nursery after a ‘Giant Who Snored’ event!

“We thought the whole ‘event’ was pitched at just the right level for nursery aged children….you had the children fully engaged as well as involved through the lovely activities. The songs were lovely, simple and catchy. It was wonderful to have someone in our nursery, reading their own book, not something that happens every day! Simple, but very effective entertainment – who needs flashing screens and gimmicks – good books, like The Giant who Snored, really are the best entertainment. A treat for staff and children – we all laughed and snored along with the Giant!” Comments from staff at Edzell Nursery after a ‘Giant Who Snored’ event!

“It was wonderful working with Mike on our recent author residency with primary schools in Cumbernauld. Mike has a natural talent for engaging with children and getting them excited about writing – even reluctant writers. It was great to see a group of pupils so enthusiastic about telling their stories, and excited about seeing the final product.” Catherine Jones, Creative Learning Manager, Edinburgh International Book Festival

“Events with Mike are full of laughter, song, games and great story telling.” Alice Watson, Kirkcaldy Waterstones

“Just wanted to say a huge thank you for your [Museum Mystery Squad] session yesterday. We had such great feedback from teachers and pupils after it and we all really enjoyed it too!” Sarah Cowie, Learning Officer (Schools), National Museum of Scotland

Your [Museum Mystery Squad] talk today was fantastic, the children were absolutely delighted and we received some great feedback from the parents!” Bragela Hornal, Education Officer, Andrew Carnegie Birthplace Museum, Dunfermline

“It was absolutely brilliant! The children were so excited and loved it! It was so well pitched for the age and the interaction and active participation was excellent. Great for them to get a better understanding of Scots words and rhyming.” Corrie Dougall, P2/3 Teacher, Dunkeld Primary School (used Thistle Games as part of a Games and Gatherings topic)

“The pupils thoroughly enjoyed Mike’s visit which led to writing their own version of ‘Gruesome Gladiator’. They were truly inspired to become creative writers.” Miss Ross, Lauder Primary School

“Thank you very much for such a cracking event (West Lothian Schools Festival) on Tuesday! The kids really loved it and we’ve had some very good feedback indeed from schools.” Sally Pattle, Far From the Madding Crowd Bookshop, Linlithgow 

“Mike has been involved in Circle Haven’s Storytelling Week for the past four years and is an essential part of the project that results in a fantastic children’s book. Mike brings passion, creativity and an engaging child centred process to the week that ensures that the children and parents have both a fantastic experience and are left with a completed story based on all their own ideas. Circle would recommend Mike to anyone that aspires to bring creativity and enjoyment to children through the mediums of storytelling and writing”.  Alex Collop, Project Manager, Haven

“You have inspired us by teaching us about writing. I like writing much more because of you. It’s not just me it’s the whole school! Personally I would like you to help me write my own book.”  P4 pupil, Lauder Primary School

“Mike’s visit to our school was a highlight of our Reading Week.  His sessions on ‘what makes a reader keep on reading’ were pitched perfectly for children in P4 & P5 and then P6 & P7 (and staff loved them too!)  He shared with us how much he loved to read and the stories he enjoyed as a child.   He then inspired the children to write with challenges and then supported this creative process by visiting classes and spending time with the children.  A great experience for all of us!”                                              
Karen MacGregor, Headteacher, Queensferry Primary School

What an exciting day! 4B are absolutely thrilled with the story. It almost got to fever pitch when I asked which ideas they recognised! (after Story in 60 Minutes session)

Janis MacDonald, Teacher, Kings Meadow Primary, Haddington

Hi Mike, I’d really like to thank you for the opportunity to hear about your creative process.  The pupils in the class were very interested in what you do and how you do it.  Their contributions during your talk are testament to your way with them – your written work and your presentation. I think you have encouraged an interest in writing for some of them.  Well done!  Michael Sinclair, Teacher, St John’s Primary, Portobello

Dear Mike, When we were at the library it was really fun and I never knew it could be at a library! I never knew writing could be fun as well but since you showed us how you done it I’ve been doing a lot more at school and at home! I have been doing ok stories but I’m going to keep going over it like you had to to be a proper author obviously I amn’t but one day who knows. Thank you for making writing more fun for me. Pupil from St. John’s Primary, Portobello


“Govan Schools Pipes & Drums Association made contact with Mike Nicholson in May 2016 to engage his skills and experience in fund raising for charities. From a face to face meeting and from follow up telephone calls Mike constructed a very professional and innovative Briefing Paper about GSPDA which was sent out to numerous Trusts, Foundations and Organisations that Mike had identified as candidates that were likely to be interested in the work that the registered charity, Govan Schools Pipes & Drums Association, do. One year on nearly £35,000 has been raised through this work so the success of Mike’s work speaks for itself. I am very happy to recommend Mike, he has a very pleasant nature, is easy to work with, has a great skill in writing, does what he says he’s going to do and gets results.” Alan F. Peat  GSPDA Secretary and Treasurer

“Mike undertook an external evaluation for one of our projects (end of 2016).  He was professional, reliable and delivered what he said he would on time.  He has an excellent style of communication that was well received by the project beneficiaries and staff.  He had a good understanding of the project, with its various complexities, and the needs of the organisation in relation to the evaluation.  I highly recommend him for this type of work.”   Kelly Minio-Paluello, Service Manager, LGBT Health and Wellbeing

Thanks so much for leading us through such an effective and positive day [strategy workshop for staff and board]. The unanimous verdict was that it was a very productive session and feedback on your personal ability to get us through the phases to a useful conclusion was really positive. Words like ‘skilful’ and ‘astute’ and ‘quietly effective’ were used. Indeed [staff member named] today said she reckoned you were the best facilitator she’d ever been lucky enough to work with and that’s after a career working mainly in the public sector and LOTS of facilitated events. So high praise from all of us. Another staff member also felt you were really good at gently challenging people without causing upset and also at accepting slightly difficult comments without diminishing them or letting them become a roadblock. Heaps of praise”  Fiona Thackeray, Head of Operations and Development, Trellis Scotland 

“Everybody involved in the external evaluation found you really easy to talk to and enjoyed the whole process. Befrienders, Befriendees and staff alike felt that you are very skilled in communicating with people and in making them feel comfortable as well as in gently guiding discussions. Thank you for making it so easy and enjoyable for people to participate.” Tanja Mehrer, Senior Befriending Co-ordinator, North East Sensory Services, Aberdeen

“Mike has delivered a wide range of consultancy work for us over the last ten years, principally staff training, organisational development and independent evaluation. We have found his skills indispensable throughout our development from tiny project to large well-established organisation. He combines a detailed knowledge of our specific niche (befriending services for people with learning disabilities) with a broad perspective of the voluntary and social care sector; this makes him very easy to work with and ensures our services keep up to date with.” Andrew Findlay, Project Co-ordinator, Interest Link Borders

“Mike researched and compiled a list of over 60 funders to approach, together with deadlines and application requirements. These were prioritised and Mike has continued to prompt us as closing dates draw near. In three months we have already secured £22,000 with many applications still pending. We can’t praise Mike highly enough. He has been efficient, reliable and supportive throughout. Recruiting him was an excellent decision as his sterling efforts have allowed us to focus on our service delivery, safe in the knowledge that first-rate grant applications are being prepared on our behalf.” Martha Lester-Cribb and Sandy Kerr, co-founders of Pass IT On Computers

“Just rereading your board development day report for us at Craighead and thinking what an excellent piece of work that was.” Jo Kennedy (then Director, Craighead Institute)

“I don’t know how to describe how X felt, but he was definitely impacted and seemed to almost cry, both he and his mum really liked it and wanted to thank you.  You definitely have a gift for this!” Youth Worker having just shown a client their recovery story