Chris Fairclough is a professional photographer who has worked in children's publishing for many years.
Sir Mo Farah was born in Mogadishu, Somalia in 1983. As a young child he spent time in Djibouti before moving to England at the age of eight. Mo initially struggled with the language barrier, but his PE teacher at Feltham Community College, Alan Watkinson, quickly spotted his potential as a runner and encouraged him to join Borough of Hounslow Athletics Club. After attending St Mary's Endurance Performance and Coaching Centre in Twickenham, Mo became a professional athlete. At the 2012 London Olympic Games he won gold in the 10,000m - Britain's first gold in this event. He followed this up with a stunning victory in the 5000m to become, in the words of Dave Moorcroft, 'the greatest male distance runner that Britain has ever seen.' Mo was appointed CBE in the Honours List in 2013 and in December 2016 he was awarded a knighthood in the Queen's New Year's Honours list. He lives in Portland, Oregon with his wife Tania, and their three daughters Rhianna, Aisha and Amani.
Jim Field is a lead-driven, pencil-pushing, 25-frames-per-second Led Zeppelin fan. He is also a hugely talented illustrator and animation director. His first picture book Cats Ahoy! won the Booktrust Roald Dahl Funny Prize and was nominated for the Kate Greenaway award. He has since illustrated a string of bestselling, multi-award-winning children's books, including Oi Frog! and The Lion Inside, as well as young fiction series Rabbit and Bear. Jim is the 5th bestselling illustrator in the UK.
Susannah trained at Guildhall School of Music and Drama leaving with 1st Class Honours in 2007 and since then she has featured on stage, film and radio. .Her first role was in the National Theatre's production of THE ROSE TATTOO, playing along side Zoe Wanamaker. Director, Nick Hytner, was so impressed with her performance she was offered the part of Hero in his production of MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING with Simon Russell Beale and Zoe Wanamaker.
This was quickly followed by her first screen role in WALLANDER and numerous other successful TV and film parts.
Catherine Fisher is an award-winning fantasy writer and author of the New York Times bestseller Incarceron. The Oracle was shortlisted for the Whitbread Award 2003, The Conjuror's Game for the Smarties Award, The Snow-Walker's Son for the WH Smith Mind Boggling Award, The Candle Man won the Tir-Na-n'Og Award, and Corbenic was shortlisted. Author of many books for children and two volumes of award-winning poetry, she is particularly well-known in Wales and has been named as the first Welsh Young People's Laureate.
Having studied English Literature at university , Charlie began his career in the film business carrying cans of film round Soho and making very bad cups of tea on the principal that he'd then be asked to do something a bit more interesting, a strategy that he recommends to anyone starting out as a tea-boy. He progressed to the BBC where he worked in film editing on everything from Drama to Current Affairs. He then went to California where he morphed into a screenwriter, having been awarded a Warner Brothers Fellowship in Screenwriting at USC School of Cinema and TV. He's written screenplays for Tri-Star, MGM, Paramount and Warner Bros among others. He continues to write for the movies, and also television. He still thinks that being a film editor is a pretty damn fine way to learn about story-telling in general, and narrative structure and pacing in particular. Charlie also moved into other types of writing including magazine features, a computer game and as both a national Sunday newspaper columnist and restaurant reviewer. Finally he found the way to combine all those writing strands and produced some rattling-good children's books! The Stoneheart trilogy has been a massive international hit and Charlie has recently sold the movie rights of Stoneheart to Paramount. He has also been asked to write the screenplay himself, which just shows you should never make plans, since he actually wrote the books to get away from Hollywood for a bit... In his personal life, Charlie met and married his wife, a fellow Scot, in LA. They have two children, whom Charlie calls his first, most important, and toughest audience. They've all now returned from California and live in Edinburgh with a terrier called Archie.
David Flint is Head of Primary Teacher Training at University College, Worcester, UK. He has written many educational books for children, including Continents: Europe (Hodder Wayland).
Martin Ford is editor of Carpworld, the UK's leading carp fishing magazine, and has written for magazines around the world on all aspects of fishing. He has more than 40 years of angling experience.
Louise was born in 1987 - most likely with a pencil in her hand! Her passion for drawing started at around 4 years old. Nothing was safe from her coloured pencils! She spent most of her childhood watching cartoons and drawing comics to give to her favourite teachers. She went on to graduate from Newcastle College in 2008 with a BA Hons in Illustration and Animation. Louise works from home in a small studio (and sometimes from the sofa) being supervised by three noisy and very naughty Jack Russell Terriers.
Lara Fox is the pseudonym for a published author living in the UK. A runner up in the Lit Idol competition in 2005, this author has published one other teenage title and is currently working on the follow up to My Year in Agony - again featuring Miss Understanding as a beleaguered publishing intern who enthralls her blog readers with the inside scoop on publishing ...
Lee Fox grew up in the Melbourne suburb of Footscray. She has been a production assistant for a commercial radio station, a Mormon, a cook in a childcare centre and a store manager on a remote Aboriginal community - not necessarily in that order. A mother of five children, Lee's writing career began in 2005 with several articles published in THE AGE. Lee lives by the ocean and reads daily to her beloved grandchildren.
Debbie Foy is an experienced writer of non-fiction books for children. She specialises in fashion, food and biography writing.
Zana Fraillon worked as a primary school teacher before becoming a full-time writer of fiction and picture books for young children. She is the author of The Ones That Disappeared and The Bone Sparrow, which won the Amnesty CILIP Honour 2017, was shortlisted for the Carnegie Medal and Guardian Children's Book Prize, and has garnered widespread critical acclaim. Zana lives in Victoria, Australia, with her husband and three sons.
Malcolm Freeman trained at the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School. He has appeared on television in Trail of Guilt, Holby City, Family Affairs, EastEnders, Prime Suspect and The Rag Nymph. His theatre work includes The Balcony, Country Dancing, Richard II, and Romeo and Juliet with the RSC, and Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? and Fitting for Ladies at the Royal Lyceum, Edinburgh. He also works as a dialect coach.
Writer and teacher Charles Freeman specializes in the 20th century and international affairs. He is an examiner for the World Affairs paper in the International Baccalaureate's history programme, in which 'Dictatorship' was a popular option.
Echo Freer was born and brought up in Yorkshire. After training to be a teacher, she moved to London, where she taught Special Needs in one of London's social priority areas. When her son was diagnosed as severely dyslexic, she completed a specialist training course to teach and diagnose specific learning difficulties. She now assesses and teaches under-achieving children. She lives in London.
Vivian is a writer of both books and plays; she has written more than 250 children's books, including the very successful Tiara Club series, and is consistently one of the top 30 most borrowed authors from UK libraries. She has had plays performed both in London and throughout Scotland; her audiences include young adults as well as children. She has won many awards for her books, and is regularly invited to festivals including Cheltenham and the Edinburgh International Book Festival. (2012 Guest selector for the children's programme.) Vivian teaches part time at Edinburgh College of Art, and is one of the two founding members of the PictureHooks programme supporting Scottish illustrators. She is married with four grown up daughters and three grandchildren, and lives in Edinburgh. She'd like a cat, but lives up 66 steps and has no garden ... maybe one day. Her favourite book is an empty notebook.Since 1990, Vivian French has published more than 100 books for children of all ages. She has been a reviewer and has worked in the theatre - she is also well-known as a playwright. Among her most popular books are the Tiara Club titles for Hachette. Married with four grown-up daughters, she now lives in Edinburgh.Visit her website at www.vivianfrench.com.
Maeve Friel is the author of Felix on the Move "Leapfrog" and Felicity Floss:Tooth Fairy "Leapfrog Rhyme Time". She has also written the popular Witch-in-Training series for Harper Collins which has so far been translated into eleven languages. Her next book "Tiger Lily - Heroine in the Making" comes out later this year. Her short stories have been widely anthologised. Maeve was born in Northern Ireland, lived in England and Italy for many years, and now divides her time between Dublin and a small Spanish village. She has two grown up children.
Andrew Fusek Peters
Andrew Fusek Peters is an Anglo-Czech poet, storyteller, didgeridoo player, broadcaster, anthologist and author with an international reputation. He is the UK's tallest poet (6'8''!!) and has worked in thousands of schools, libraries, arts centres and literary festivals, giving lively performances and running workshops with all ages and abilities. 'An experienced and accomplished anthologist', according to the TES, Andrew has published more than 70 books and his poems appear in the Poetry Archive, set up by the Poet Laureate to record the best poets. Polly Peters is a former English and Drama teacher. She was previously Head of Drama at a sixth form college and currently works as a youth/community theatre leader, director and playwright.