Tuesday, 7 December 2010


Don't Dip Your Chips in Your Drink, Kate! has won an Award!!!!!
Leigh and I won Highly Commended Picture Book AND Community Libraries Favourite Book at the Sheffield Children's Book Awards!!

The awards are voted for by children from across Sheffield - over 200 schools took part this year. We are so grateful to all the amazing organisers, but mostly to the children of Sheffield. We love you!!!

Wednesday, 10 November 2010

How to Grow a Dinosaur Proofs Just In

And look!! Some MORE proofs came today!! These are illustrated by the gorgeous Ed Eaves and the book is also out in July!!

Tuesday, 9 November 2010

Look what the postman brought!

Look at these! They are the colour proofs for my brand new book, Whiffy Wilson, which is coming out in July!! I'm SOOOOOO excited!!

Saturday, 28 August 2010

Supermarket Zoo in Waterstones

One of the staff came up to talk to me in Waterstones today, to say that Don't Dip Your Chips in Your Drink, Kate is her daughters' favourite.  She said, "They do have most of the bad manners described in your book, but hadn't thought of dipping their chips yet.  Now they do it all the time!"  Oops!  Soz!

So Supermarket Zoo was in the window at Waterstones, and lots of kids came in to make whacky shopping lists, make monkey masks and listen to stories.  We actually made some sales too which always helps! 

Don't worry if you didn't make it, all the activity sheets are on my website, www.carylhart.com

Friday, 27 August 2010

NEW! Supermarket Zoo Activities

Check out the new activities in the Kids Fun Club!

Thursday, 26 August 2010

Meet me at Waterstones, Sheffield THIS SATURDAY

To mark the huge success of Supermarket Zoo, I will be appearing in Waterstones in Sheffield from 2.00 - 3.00 this Saturday, 28th August.  We'll have some fun activities for the little ones, and signing galore, so do pop down if you'd like to have a chat and a story!

ps.  Pass it on

Tuesday, 20 July 2010

101 Things You Didn't Know About Publishing #9

Digging for Treasure

While doing some research for my new young fiction project, I came across this first edition of Treasure Island, by Robert Louis Stevenson.  Clear out your attic, rummage around in your grandparents' drawers, and you could make a fortune.  This 1883 first edition is on sale for nearly £22,000!!!


101 Things You Didn't Know About Publishing #8

You can do it too!

Many authors visit schools, libraries and other public venues.  Author visits are a fantastic motivation for children, teachers and parents.  Children get to meet their literary heros and get stuck in to some brilliant creative activities. 

But, for me, the most valuable thing about school visits, is that children learn that authors are real people.   We all started life as babies, we went to school, got in trouble with our teachers (or not!).  We all had crushes and spots and made mistakes.

Author visits say to children: "If I am just like you, you could be just like me, if you want to be."
I think this is a very powerful and enabling message to give children.

To find out more about booking an author, go to:

Friday, 2 July 2010

It's Publication Day!!!

Look what was waiting on my doorstep when I got back from walking the dog!
Today is publication day for my third picture book, Supermarket Zoo and these beautiful flowers are from the team at Simon & Schuster.

I can't believe its finally out!

Watch out for special promotions in Waterstone's, Asda, Sainsbury's, WHSmith and Amazon throughout July and August!!!

Competition!! The Great Picture Book Hunt!

Have you spotted a copy of Supermarket Zoo or Don't Dip Your Chips in a store near you?  If you have, you could win a prize! 

Take a picture of yourself in front of any shop display of Supermarket Zoo or Don't Dip Your Chips and email it to me, together with your name, age and the name and location of the store.

The person who sends me the best photo will win a personally signed copy of Supermarket Zoo!

Please email photos as a jpeg (no more than 100 KB) to:


Competition closes 31 August 2010

Good Luck!

Wednesday, 30 June 2010

Tuesday, 29 June 2010

Pride of Place in Waterstones??

Apparently one of my books has pride of place in Waterstones, Sheffield!  Anyone in the vicinity please take a photograph!!!!

Writing fast and furious!

I am working furiously on my latest picture book.  It's really taking shape, and is so exciting I'm almost out of breath!  Come on Albie.  You can do it!

Posted via email from Caryl Hart, Children's Author

Saturday, 26 June 2010

Come and See me in Sheffield, 3 July

If you would like to come and meet me, and have some fun with some of my stories, then come to one of three Sheffield libraries next Saturday, 3 July.  Places are limited so you will need to book! 

Firth Park Library 10.00 - 11.30
To Book: Tel 0114 203 7433

Eccleshall Library 1.00 - 2.00
To Book: Tel 0114 203 7222

Central Library 3.30- 4.30
To Book: Tel 0114 273 4734

or follow this link:

A Tongue Twister for Natalie

My friend Natalie from Uttoxeter requested a story about sheep.  Well I can't write a story that quickly, but here is a tongue twister that I loved when I was her age...  Ready?  Now read this out loud six times, whilst standing on your head, drinking a glass of water:

The Sixth Sick Sheik's Sixth Sheep's Sick!

Go on.. give it a go (head stands optional)!


A friend bounded up to me today, full of excitement.  Why?  Because she had just seen Don't Dip Your Chips in Your Drink, Kate for sale in WH Smiths!  I know it sounds daft, but I still get so excited seeing my own books for sale in a real shop.  I wonder if I'll ever get used to it!!


Wednesday, 23 June 2010

101 Things You Didn't Know About Publishing #7

A lot of the children's authors I have met used to be teachers.  I guess that's to be expected but yesterday, I met an author who has a VERY different background.  Harriet Goodwin, author of The Boy Who Fell Down Exit 43 is actually a real live Opera Singer!  Well I never!
Great to meet you Harriet!
Check out Harriet's books here: http://www.harrietgoodwinbooks.com/

Uttoxeter Festival of Reading

Wow!  What an amazing time I have had over the last two days!

I was at Picknalls First School on Monday, with about 300 nursery and infant children!  I have never seen so many small children in once place and ALL behaving IMPECCABLY!!  What lovely, responsive children there are in Uttoxeter!

We had great fun joining in with stories and making collages and making a LOT of noise with percussion instruments! 

Yesterday I was based at Windsor Park Middle School, working with about 90 Year 2s and 3s.  We made rhyme machines and made up lots of very silly rhymes.  In the afternoon, I was at the Uttoxeter Cinebowl with about 100 Year 1s 2s and 3s.  I dread to think what anyone outside thought of all the mooing, and baaing that was going on, but we had a great time!!

Thank you to Eleanor Shakespear from Thomas Alleyne's High School for all her hard work organising the festival, and to all the teachers who helped run the activities.  And of course, to all the fantastic children!

Sunday, 20 June 2010

Ryecroft, not Ryelands!!

Well I don't know where I got the name Ryelands from - according to Natalie, it is a breed of sheep, and here is a picture to prove it.
I am hoping that I'm not going to be talking to a cinema full of bleating sheep on Tuesday!  Perhaps I'll bring my dog Roo, just in case!!

Thursday, 17 June 2010

Getting Ready for Uttoxeter Schools

I'm off down the road to Uttoxeter on Monday 21 and Tuesday 22 June to take part in the Uttoxeter Festival of Reading organised by Thomas Alleyne's High School.

On Monday, I'll be working with Julia Jarman, Author of Class 2 at the Zoo and other fab stories.  We'll be visiting Picknalls First School where we are planning all sorts of fun activities for around 200 infant school children. 

Then on Tuesday I'm visiting Windsor Park Middle School to work with 3 classes of Year 3 and Year 4 children, then in the afternoon, I'm speaking at the Cinebowl to lots of children from the Ryecroft cluster of schools. 
Should be fun!!

By the way, don't bother ringing me on Wednesday, I'll be in bed!!

Caryl Hart
Children's Author

Visit my website, www.carylhart.com
Check out my blog: http://carylhart.posterous.com/
Follow me on twitter: http://twitter.com/carylhart1

Monday, 7 June 2010

Derbyshire Literature Festival

Alas, my last session for Derbyshire Literature Festival is now finished!
I have visited libraries in Shirebrook, Buxton and Pinxton, and hooked up the the library bus at Tibshelf.

Unfortunately, I don't have any pictures that I can show you yet, but we had a great time reading stories, making zizzers, cutting, sticking and gluing!

Wednesday, 2 June 2010

Derbyshire Literature Festival

Ahh, that's better. A nice cold glass of wine to round off a very busy day of workshops for the Derbyshire Literature Festival!

Today I visited children at Shirebrook and Buxton libraries, and we had lots of fun making up silly rhymes and using home made percussion instruments to play some poems.

What fun!

Thursday, 27 May 2010

Halifax Independent Art School

Yesterday Lynne Chapman and I went to talk to some students at a recently opened Independent Art School in Huddersfield, which is run the artist John Ross. We were invited to the artsy hub of Halifax by Chris Mould, Children's Writer & Illustrator and Artist in Residence at Dean Clough Mill. 

After a great discussion with the students, we were treated to a tour of Dean Clough, where we met some artists at work and had a sneaky look around Chris Mould's studio! 

Visit Chris Mould's Website: http://www.somethingwickedlyweird.com/

Visit Lynne Chapman's Website: http://www.lynnechapman.co.uk/

Posted via email from Caryl Hart, Children's Author

CHIPS in California!

My good friend Rob who lives in sunny California just sent me this picture। He says the book is "awesome" - hope he's not just being nice!

Tuesday, 25 May 2010

Friday, 21 May 2010

Fun with the Little Ones!

Q:  What do you get if you mix 30 very small children, a trolley of percussion instruments, scissors, glue, sparkles, string, stories and songs.... and what do you get?

Lots and Lots of Fun!!
(Oh, and quite a lot of noise!)

Check out the Gallery to find out more about my time with Fairfield and St Peter's Nursery Schools in the Building Foundations Project:


Posted via email from Caryl Hart, Children's Author

Thursday, 13 May 2010

101 Things You Didn't Know About Publishing #6

Knock their Socks Off

If you want to get a picture book published, its going to have to be good.  In fact, not just good, it has to be OUTSTANDING!   

You must have original content, strong characters and a believable story.  If you’re thinking of writing a tale about a poor animal who can’t find a comfy place to sleep, or has lost its nest, or has lost its oink, baa or moo, then you might need a re-think! 

Picture books have progressed beyond all recognition since the days of Peter and Jane, so make sure your story is a real belter!

Posted via email from Caryl Hart, Children's Author

Wednesday, 12 May 2010

I'm Away with the Fairies!

Here I am having a fun time with the Rainbow Magic Fairies!

Posted via email from Caryl Hart, Children's Author

Rainbow Magic Premiere

Here we are, all very excited, waiting to go into the Rainbow Magic Premiere!  If you haven't already heard of them, Rainbow Magic is a series of hugely successful books published by Orchard Books, and written by Daisy Meadows.  HiT entertainment have just released a Rainbow Magic film on DVD and we were invited down to Leicester Square in London to walk up the pink carpet and enjoy the first screening of the film.

We had a great time laughing at the silly goblins, hiding from the scarry snowman and eating popcorn.  Afterwards the children had a great time at the Rainbow Magic party, with pink party food, face painting, balloon sculpture, photographs, more balloons, magic tricks, crafty stuff and more.  And as if that wasn't enough, we each got a bulging party bag with a copy of the DVD, books, CDs, and a lovely sparkly snowstorm to put in photographs we had taken with the Rainbow Fairies.

What a great day.  Thanks Orchard for inviting us!!

More pictures to follow!

Posted via email from Caryl Hart, Children's Author

Friday, 30 April 2010

101 Things You Didn't Know About Publishing #5

Patience is a Virtue

Publishing a picture book is a LOOOOONNNNNGGG process, especially if you are just starting out.

Supermarket Zoo is due out on 1 July this year. That’s two years after it was snapped up by Simon & Schuster in May 2008 and three years from the time I first sat down to write the story.

And you won’t see a paperback until this time next year, May 2011!! So if you want to get a picture book published, you’d better start now!!

Posted via email from Caryl Hart, Children's Author

Thursday, 22 April 2010

Life in Zero Gravity

I'm doing some research on YouTube into what it;s like to mess around in Zero Gravity.  Here is a taster:

Posted via email from Caryl Hart, Children's Author

Supermarket Zoo - One to Watch

According to this month's Bookseller Magazine, Supermarket Zoo is "One to Watch"
So watch out... Supermarket Zoo is out 1 July.

Posted via email from Caryl Hart, Children's Author

Monday, 19 April 2010

101 Things You Didn't Know About Publishing #4

My new editor at Simon & Schuster says its OK to begin a sentence with And or But.  Excellent!

Posted via email from Caryl Hart, Children's Author

Sunday, 18 April 2010

101 Things You Didn't Know About Publishing # 3

This Week is the London Book Fair, where publishers show off their latest books to buyers and distributors.  If you are trying to get published, get yourself down for the day and find out what's in and what's new.  There are all sorts of seminars and events too to help you in your career.


Posted via email from Caryl Hart, Children's Author

Friday, 16 April 2010

101 Things You Didn't Know About Publishing # 2

Even when you think you've finished with a text - you HAVEN'T!!
There's writing, and re-writing and more re-writing.  Then once your text has been acquired, your editor will ask you for more changes.  Then when your illustrator looks at the text, you will probably have to change even more, either because they can't draw what you've asked of them, or because there are too many words to fit on the page.  It's fun to look back at your original text and see how much things have changed!  Usually for the better.

Posted via email from Caryl Hart, Children's Author

is autoposting working?

Friday, 5 March 2010

How many people does it take to make a book?

I had a great time at Somers Park Primary School in Malvern this week.  I wanted the children to find out about the process of creating a picture book, and what better way to do so than inviting volunteers to dress up?  By the time we had all the key players up at the front, there were hardly any children left in the audience!
For more pictures to to my gallery:


Posted via email from Caryl Hart, Children's Author

Thursday, 18 February 2010

Don't Dip Your Chips Nominated for Sheffield Children's Book Award!!!

I have just found out that Don't Dip Your Chips in Your Drink, Kate! has been nominated for the picture book category of the Sheffield Children's Book Award! 

Last year, over 200 Sheffield schools took part in the awards, voting for their favourite picture books, shorter novels and longer novels.  The awards ceremony was a riot!  Imagine a city hall full to bursting with school children screaming their heads off for their favourite titles!  It's incredible! 

Last year, the picture book award was bagged by Steve Smallman and Joelle Dreidemy for Smelly Peter, The Great Pea Eater and in 2008, Claire Freedman and Ben Cort won with Aliens Love Underpants

As you can imagine, I am absolutely thrilled to pieces that Don't Dip Your Chips in your Drink, Kate! has been nominated.  But we'll all have to wait a wait to find out how we get on, because the award ceremony isn't until November!!

I can't reveal the other five books to be nominated as two have yet to be confirmed, but prmise to update you all when I find out.

Meanwhile, all you Sheffield kids - get voting!!!

Posted via email from Caryl Hart, Children's Author

Thursday, 11 February 2010

Doing the Write Stuff in Derbyshire

I have just finished a tour of village schools in Derbyshire as part of The Write Stuff literacy project organised by Lady Manners School.  We had a brilliant time, reading stories and finding out all sorts of secrets about publishing picture books.  Also appearing in the festival were Lynne Chapman, and The Two Steves!  Check out my website gallery for lots of pictures and video clips!


Posted via email from Caryl Hart, Children's Author

Tuesday, 2 February 2010

Doctor Who to Record Supermarket Zoo

I have just heard that David Tennant, former Doctor Who is going to record the audio CD for Supermarket Zoo!!  How cool is that!  They are recording tomorrow, so I'm hoping to get a signed copy!  The CD will be released in July 2011.  Supermarket Zoo the book is out this July and it's looking FANTABULOUS!!!

Posted via email from Caryl Hart, Children's Author

Tuesday, 26 January 2010

Ooooohhh! How EXCITING!

This morning I have not one, but two exciting packages on my doorstep!

My first hardback copy of Rhino? What Rhino? is now here!  It looks absolutely fabulous!  Bright and funny and quirky thanks to Sarah Horne's amazing illustrations! 

And second, the roughs have arrived for Dinosaur Seeds, which is the sequel to Supermarket Zoo!  Ed Eaves is the illustrator and he is doing a wonderful job so far!  I can't tell you how exciting it is to see my story coming to life! 

Contact me via my website or email me if you would like to buy a signed copy of Rhino? What Rhino?!

Posted via email from Caryl Hart, Children's Author

Friday, 22 January 2010

Simple Pleasures

Here I am, doing what I enjoy most. 

I've just finished a long walk through one of the most beautiful places in the world with two of my favourite friends in the world.  In this picture, we are drying out in The Old Smithy cafe, our wet socks steaming on the radiator, large mugs of tea in our hands and in front of us a gut-buster Full English - salty bacon, fried egg, perfectly blackened sausages, mushrooms, tomatoes, baked beans and chips. 

These are the simple pleasures of an author's life in the Peak District!

Posted via email from Caryl Hart, Children's Author

Tuesday, 19 January 2010

Schools Workshops: Look Where We Live!

I am just about to launch a new programme of environmental and literacy workshops for schools within the Peak District National Park.

Look Where We Live is aimed at children growing up in the Peak District.  The workshops give children the chance to tell the world what they think about their own environment.

Children explore their surroundings using environmental games, role play and other thought-provoking activities.  They use descriptive writing, poetry, drama, illustration and video to communicate their thoughts and feelings to others.  The best work will be published on the project website for friends, family, residents, visitors and environmental managers to see.

The workshops are supported by the Peak District National Park Authority and East Midlands Development Agency, under the Live & Work Rural programme.

Come back soon to find out more!

Posted via email from Caryl Hart, Children's Author

Tuesday, 12 January 2010

Caryl Hart on Author Central

Thanks to some of my writer and illustrator friends, I now have my very own page on Amazon's Author Central!
You can follow my blog, see my books and have a generally very good nosey around!  Only one of my books is listed so far, others to follow on publication!  Visit my website to find out more: www.carylhart.com

Posted via email from Caryl Hart, Children's Author

Monday, 11 January 2010


We were searching for this word on Google, and it just wasn't there!  So we thought we'd add it to my blog and then see if it came up.

Why don't you try typing in nonesense words and see what you can find!


Posted via email from Caryl Hart, Children's Author