Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Sheffield Star and Derbyshire Times

In anticipation of the Red House Children's Book Awards, the local press for Sheffield and Derbyshire asked me for an interview.  I couldn't believe it when the Sheffield Star printed a huge double page spread about me!

If you would like to read the article, you can see it online here:

The Derbyshire Times also filmed me reading an extract of the shortlisted book, Welcome to Alien School.  If you'd like to watch it, visit the Derbyshire Times website here.

Monday, 25 February 2013

Red House Children's Book Awards

Book Signing
Thank you everyone for all your support and good wishes for the Red House Children's Book Awards on Saturday 23rd February.
I didn't win, but I had a fab and dazzling time and am really happy to have been chosen as one of only four shortlisted picture book authors.

Celebratory Lunch with Book Club Members
The awards are the culmination of a lot of hard work by The Federation of Children's Book Groups (FCBG). These energetic volunteers run book groups all over the country, enthusing children about reading and inspiring a life long love of books.
The ceremony was attended by children from each of the FCBG groups, many of whom come from deprived backgrounds, so it was a real pleasure to be able to help make their day special.


Picture Book Shortlisted Authors and Illustrators
The awards are sponsored by Red House Children's Books. I think they do a fantastic job getting books out to children who may not otherwise have the opportunity to read and own them. Red House do this through a combination of hugely discounted prices and superb marketing.
It is a well-researched fact that children who own books are better readers and more socially mobile than children who don't. Shockingly, I have met a good many children who do not own a SINGLE book. Red House is helping to address this problem.

David Walliams and the Stagecoach Gangsta Grannies
To give some perspective, Red House have sold over 70,000 copies each of Welcome to Alien School and How to Grow a Dinosaur. That's at least 70,000 kids who probably would not have seen, let alone owned,  one of these books!
So, being a part of these awards is not just about bathing in the glory of hoards of adoring fans (!), it's about promoting the wonderful world of books and getting kids reading. And that has to be a good thing.

Plus, the lunch was amazing, with THREE puddings, and I got to meet Patrick Ness.
I'm happy.

Congratulations to this years winners who get the icing on the cake and a big pat on the back!

Over 1000 People Attended

This Year's Winners are:
Spooky Spooky House by Andrew Weale and Lee Wildish
Gangsta Granny by David Walliams and Tony Ross
The Medusa Project - Hit Squad by Sophie McKenzie

Find out More about the Red House Children's Book Awards here
The Winning Team!
Stagecoach Performance

All Photos kindly supplied by, and copyright of Federation of Children's Book Groups