AN author from Northwich has been shortlisted for a prestigious award thanks to her book which encourages readers to explore the forgotten art of using a pencil and paper to clarify thinking.

Alison Jones, who is also a publisher and podcast host, has been named as a finalist in The Business Book Awards.

Her shortlisted book, Exploratory Writing: Everyday magic for life and work, is written with both a business audience and general readers in mind.

Available as a paperback and an ebook, it is full of practical exercises encouraging readers to pull out a scruffy notepad and ‘just start writing’.

Alison, who founded Practical Inspiration Publishing in 2014, and hosts the weekly podcast The Extraordinary Business Book Club, says you don’t have to be a writer - or even be able to spell - to give exploratory writing a try.

She said: “The main difference with exploratory writing is that nobody else is ever going to read it – so it doesn’t matter if your spelling is terrible, and you have no idea where to put that apostrophe!

“This kind of writing, which is proven to help people beat stress and make better decisions, is a kind of private conversation you have with yourself.

"We usually think of writing, especially in business, as a tool for communicating with other people, but it's also a low-tech, accessible, offline tool to help us explore anything that's bothering us, or a problem to which we can't see a solution, and I want to show people just how simple and powerful it can be.

“I've included short, practical exercises that anyone can do in just six minutes.

“To be shortlisted for this award is such an honour because there are so many excellent business books out there.

“I am pleased the judges understood and embraced my message about the power of the pen and the page.”

This year, 300 books from business leaders and entrepreneurs across the globe were entered into The Business Book Awards.

Now in its sixth year, the awards celebrate the quality and variety of business books and offer industry-wide recognition to new and established authors writing on a range of subjects for a diverse readership.

The 2023 awards cover 14 different categories and Exploratory Writing is one of eight finalist books within the Work and Life category.

The winner will be announced at a ceremony in London on Tuesday, May 16, 2023.