Ross Duncan interviews Rossie Stone- Dekko Comics

As a boy growing up Rossie Stone was told by his mother, the BBC presenter Sally Magnusson, Icelandic stories about mythological creatures which are commonly known as Sagas.  Of course these stories have come down from Rossie Stone’s late grandfather Magnus Magnusson who was reported to have said about his grandson that one day he would do something special.

It can be easily assumed that, coming from a line of legendary family of TV presenters Rossie would glide through education; sadly this too was only going to be a fairy tale.  From day one at school he struggled. On one occasion he was asked to draw the number one, so as an aid the teacher gave a visual description of a sergeant major; however Rossie’s own visual interpretation of this was at odds with this and he invariably drew something else.  Herealised if this was the way information was going to be presented in the future then he was surely going to struggle.  What else didn’t help from day one at school was the feeling of not fitting in. Later on at secondary school he felt socially incompetent and stupid with other people not wanting to sit next to him in class.

Early on at secondary school Rossie discovered that he was dyslexic.  It indicated that he was above average intelligence and he was very glad that he wasn’t stupid. 

During his time at secondary he appreciated some additional support, eventually getting a scriber and reader.  It took away some of the pressure but even though he was given extra time with exams this ultimately didn’t improve the results. The best support and the most positive influences at school came from teachers who complimented him and who saw something good in him.

Leaving school and getting a place at art college was a major accomplishment. All through school he knew that he wasn’t going to be academic but he did know his career was going to involve animation and cartoons. 

The unlikely source and spark of genius came from the idea of turning revision into animation. Turning this around and making it fun and entertaining was how Dekko Comics was conceived.  Using creative ideas and comics to help children and adults read is not that unusual, but the Dekko approach has always been to entertain first and educate second. Rossie says, “entertainment is a much more powerful method of education”.  Dekko it allows you to use your senses rather than skills.

As a Dyslexic entrepreneur Rossie is establishing his brand locally and globally. Local authorities in Scotland and England subscribe to Dekko, with nearly 4,000 comics sold in 2016. More importantly for Rossie this is personal and he feels lucky to get an opportunity to his work make a difference.

Ross Duncan

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