Amanda Rainger is an experienced writer of children`s fiction.
Sheila grew up by the sea, which is probably why Maia's adventures in Sun Catcher start among cliff dwellers, wholive at the edge of the ocean. She started writing Sun Catcher when studying for an MA at Bath Spa University and won the United Agents' Prize for the most promising writer on the course in her final year.When she's not thinking about Maia's adventures, she works with dyslexic pupils in a mainstream comprehensive.She is currently writing the second book in the trilogy, Storm Chaser. Visit her website at http://www.sheilarance.co.uk/ and follow her on Twitter @SARance_Author
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.
Leon Read has written several books and short stories for children, and is always coming up with wacky ideas for new ones. He lives in the three counties with his wife, son and daughter. He's currently developing an idea for a series of books featuring ninja hippos.
Louise loves creating characters and bringing them to life in her artwork. She graduated from De Montfort University in 2001 and since then has illustrated many children's books.
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.
CLAUDIA RENTON trained as a choral singer. Without any formal training Claudia won a part in the BBC dramatisation of THE CAZALETS - her favourite book since she was ten. Her natural talent and enthusiasm have ensured frequent appearances on stage and screen since: she is a regular in the Granada series DISTANT SHORES, and has appeared in the films 1969, YOU'RE IN THERE, EXTRA PEPPER and DEAD BOLT DEAD. She recently appeared on stage in the RSC's production of Thomas Middleton's WOMEN BEWARE WOMEN: it was her singing as Ganymede in this which drew attention to her suitability for the challenge of reading (and singing) GATTY¿S TALE.
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
Lynne Rickards was born in Canada and now lives in Scotland with her husband and two children. She grew up writing and illustrating her own stories and actually went to art school at 18 to study illustration. However, she decided she was much happier writing the stories and loves to see artwork in her books, knowing it's so much better than anything she could ever have done.Keep up with her at: http://lynnerickardsauthor.wordpress.com/
Born in Suffolk, Sarah Ridley lives on the Suffolk/Essex border and is a writer and editor of educational books for children and young people. Recently, a life-long interest in history has led her to write books about the First World War, inspired by reading letters written by soldiers who served in the conflict. Brothers at War tells the story of uncovering the material held in her own family's archives. Dear Jelly sets letters written by soldier brothers to their younger sisters at its core. Teenage children keep Sarah busy when she isn't tied to her computer, and she relaxes by walking along river estuaries close to her home.
James Riordan grew up during the war. After he left school he worked as a postman, a barman, a crate stacker, a railway clerk and a double bass player before doing his national service. After demobilization he did a joint honours degree in Social Science and Russian and then spent five years in Moscow working as a translator. Back in England he lectured at Birmingham and Bradford Universities before becoming Professor of Russian at Surrey University. In 1999, he won the NASEN book award for 'Sweet Clarinet' (OUP) His book, 'The Prisoner' has been nominated for the Carnegie Medal.
Penny Dolan is a children's writer and storyteller living in North Yorkshire. She is a popular speaker with both infant and junior children, and has visited many School Book Weeks and literacy events across the UK, with her enjoyable 'Author Talks' and lively story-telling sessions. She has also spoken and performed in libraries, bookshops, museums, art galleries, historic sites and outdoor locations, and has appeared on the children's programme of several literature festivals. She has a wide interest in children's books and has been Chair of the Federation of Children's Book Groups. Penny has a wide experience of schools. She was a primary advisory teacher for English and Drama but has been a freelance language arts worker for several years. She has also taught on residential writing courses for children, tutored both storytelling and writing courses for adults, and spoken at conferences. Penny has a degree in Education, specialising in Language and Literacy and an Advanced Diploma in Educational Drama. As well as working on her writing, Penny enjoys drawing, painting, reading, chatting and daydreaming. Her favourite colour is yellow. Her favourite food is strawberries-and-cream, and she is probably the world's slowest swimmer. She has three untidy desks, two grown-up children and one rather bad cat.
David Roberts is a hugely successful illustrator who has illustrated books by Philip Ardagh, Julia Donaldson, Jacqueline Wilson and Chris Priestley. He's also the creator of Dirty Bertie and the NEW YORK TIMES bestselling artist of picture books IGGY PECK, ARCHITECT and ROSIE REVERE, ENGINEER. David lives in London.
Hilary Robinson is the author of over 40 children's books including the top selling Mixed Up Fairy Tales and The Copper Tree. She is also a broadcaster and freelance BBC radio producer. Hilary was born in Devon and brought up in Nigeria and England. Her books have been translated into a number of languages and are sold across the world.
After a long career as a primary school teacher, Pam Robson is now a part-time teacher and devotes the rest of her time to writing. During the past ten years she has written nearly 40 books for Macdonald Young, Wayland, Evans and Watts. She is also studying for an MA in children's literature at Roehampton. She is vice-chair of the British section on IBBY (International Board on Books for Young Children) and a member of the selection panel for the biennial Hans Anderson award.
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.
Patricia's work as a professional actor spans twenty years, with dozens of lead roles in stage plays, radio drama, commercials and cartoons. Highlights include performing alongside acclaimed director Robert Wilson in his slow-motion play Deafman Glance, and nine years playing Sue Ellen in the Emmy award-winning cartoon Arthur. She has worked in Canada as an arts critic and television host and is now based in London. Audiobook narrations include Karin Slaughter's The Unremarkable Heart, Heather O'Neill's Lullabies for Little Criminals, Donna Milner's After River and Anita Shreve's Light On Snow
Elizabeth is originally from London but moved to Cornwall many years ago. She loves making up stories as well as keeping the classic tales alive for today's children.
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.