Shoo Rayner should have been an astronaut, but he became an author and illustrator instead. He is the creator of more than 150 well-loved books, including the LITTLE HORRORS, RICKY ROCKET, VIKING VIK, AXEL STORM, SCAREDY CATS and the JUST SO STORIES series.
Martin lives in Cornwall with his wife and son. He is best known for his lively illustrations, and has just recently started writing. He is passionate about home-grown British legends, in particular those from his home island of Sark.
Toby Reynolds has worked in children's publishing for 20 years. After working for some of the largest UK publishers, he spent many years freelancing in a variety of roles. In 2011 he co-founded Green Android Limited,a children's publishing company. he lives and works from his home in East London.
Jon Richards is an award-winning author of non-fiction books for children. He specialises in visual literacy, infographics and data visualisation.
Although I've lived for most of my life in north London, I was born and grew up in South Wales. My mum read to me a great deal,and I think it was from her that I developed my love of language. I also enjoyed drawing and painting, and eventually won a scholarship to study at Dublin College of Art.When I came back from Eire, I first worked as a teacher in a Rudolf Steiner school. Then I came to London and took a number of strange jobs, including reading aloud to a blind writer and typing out his manuscript. The typewriter I'd hired to do this had some paid-for time left, so I used it to write a short story which I sold to a women's magazine. It became the first of many, and the beginning of a successful career. While my children were growing up, I stopped writing, and started a small design business, making screen-printed puppet theatres, flying saucers and playhouses that looked like medieval battle tents.Work took us to Paris, where we lived for two years, and where, incidentally, I first encountered the Romanian gipsy girl who features in my novel, FOR MARITSA WITH LOVE (Simon&Schuster).My first children's book, THE TIME TREE (Walker Books) grew out of a story I told my daughter and her best friend to pass the time on a very long walk (the original idea came from a TV programme I'd watched about teaching children with hearing problems). The girls begged me to write it down so that they could read it for themselves - so I did. This book is currently being marketed as a film series by Wild Thyme Productions.TO SUMMON A SPIRIT (Walker Books), was one of the Pick of the Year titles listed in the Children's Book Award. I'm now published in the USA and Australia as well as the UK, and my work has been translated into Danish, German and Japanese.My first book for Franklin Watts was PLOP CITY, a book about bird poo which continues to be loved, especially by small boys. I have two copies of the Arabic version
Kate is an experienced writer of children's non-fiction books.
Peter Riley was a science teacher for 25 years, 17 of them as Head of Science. His first book was published in 1981, and he has been a full-time author since 1996, with over 200 books published for children, students and teachers. He is the winner of the prestigious Schoolbook Award for Science in 2000, as well as being shortlisted for the Aventis Science Prize 2004 and nominated for the Educational Resources Award in 2009.
Scot is an award winning illustrator/author who has been drawing since the dawn of time. He has illustrated over 50 books, some of which he also wrote. Scot has worked with the National Film Board of Canada and has had his illustrations exhibited at the National Gallery of Canada. He lives in Vancouver, but enjoys traveling and has been able to pack up his laptop and work from London, Berlin and Hawaii.
Since landing on planet Earth, Paul Rockett has spent much of his time reading up on the adventures of human life, while also experiencing a few of his own. In his quest to find out more about his chosen home planet, Paul has travelled, doodled, eaten a lot of food, plundered dusty libraries and gazed out of windows. Having gathered together a vast amount of fascinating data, it is now his mission to present as much as he can in interesting ways, so that any passing Martian can see how brilliant life is on Earth.
I write short books for short children and longer books for longer people. I've been writing fiction and non-fiction for young people, and non-fiction since the last millennium - luckily, the end of the last millennium and I'm not even nearly 1000 years old. I particularly enjoy reading and writing stories with a bit of a twist and, for older readers, an element of horror. I definitely have a Gothic streak. Writers I really admire include Minnie Gray, Oliver Jeffers, Shaun Tan, Edward Gorey, Tove Jansson, Marcus Sedgwick, Siobhan Dowd and Melvin Burgess. I love being a writer because (a) it gives me the chance to be enthusiastic about things and share my enthusiasm with other people (b) I get paid for telling lies and (c) I don't have to do as I'm told, unlike people with a real job. I like to listen to music when I'm writing, and usually pick a few pieces of music that go with each book and listen to them again and again - most of them are opera.Although I spend most of my time writing, I also spend some helping other people with their own writing - mostly young people, who are doing a degree at university. This is great fun as I get to read lots of stories by writers who are just starting. I live in Cambridge, which is a very ancient city in the east of England with lots of ornate and pointy buildings. It's very flat in Cambridge, so it's easy to go everywhere by bicycle, but it's also rather wet. If I could live anywhere at all, it would probably be in Venice, which is also flat, ancient and full of pointy buildings. It's even wetter than Cambridge, and people go everywhere by boat.
Stewart Ross is a popular, prize-winning children's author. He has written over one hundred books for children, including many on 20th century history. His works have been translated into more than a dozen languages. Stewart taught history, english and politics for ten years to children of all ages.