Related to: 'How to Build a Dragon Fort'

Author Spotlight with Graham Marks

Cressida Cowell

Cressida Cowell’s Hiccup books, which she also illustrates, are now published in over 30 countries around the world and the first book in the series, How to Train Your Dragon, has been made into an animated movie by DreamWorks; Cressida also writes and illustrates picture books. The eleventh title in the Hiccup Saga, How to Seize a Dragon’s Jewel, is published in September, and here she talks to Graham Marks about pretty much everything to do with writing a hit series…

Adam Blade

Adam Blade is the name for a small collective of authors who have been writing the bestselling series Beast Quest and Sea Quest for ten years! Beast Quest has now sold over 10 million copies. The newest series from the Adam Blade team is called Team Hero - it launches in Summer 2017. You can find out more about all these amazing adventures at the series websites: seaquestbooks.co.uk and teamherobooks.co.uk

Annalees Lim

Having completed a BA in Designs for Film and Television and a postgraduate course in Prop Making, Annalees spent her early career in production design and prop making for theatre, independent film and television. More recently, she has founded Makers and Creators in her capacity as arts practitioner, and runs craft workshops for various community groups, including children and young people with additional needs, as well as vulnerable adults.

Cath Senker

Cath Senker is a children's non-fiction writer who specialises in writing about modern history, global issues and world religions. Her latest history titles include Living Through the Vietnam War (Raintree, 2011), Our World Divided: Israel and the Middle East (Wayland, 2011) and A Cultural History of Women in America: Women Claim the Vote (Bailey Publishing, 2011). She has a particular interest in the topics of migration, refugees and racism and recently wrote Mapping Global Issues: Immigrants and Refugees (Arcturus, 2011). In her work, Cath aims to highlight individuals' experiences and to present different viewpoints in a non-judgemental way as a basis for discussion.Cath also works as a project manager and editor on non-fiction titles for both children and adults. Before embarking on a freelance career, she worked as a commissioning editor for a children's educational publishing company for eight years. She is also an experienced ESOL teacher. Cath volunteers with City Reads, a project that aims to widen the enjoyment of books and reading among people of all ages, especially people from disadvantaged communities. She is a also a keen amateur cyclist, cook and gardener.

Claire Llewellyn

Claire Llewellyn was an editor of children's fiction and non-fiction for over ten years before becoming a writer, specializing in books for younger readers. Her 'My First Book of Time' won TES Junior Information Book Award in 1992. Since then, she has written over 50 children's books on a wide range of subjects.

Daisy Meadows

Daisy Meadows is the author of the bestselling series Rainbow Magic and Magic Animal Friends. Her books have sold over 30 million copies worldwide.You can find out all about her magical stories and much more at the series websites: www.rainbowmagicbooks.co.uk and www.magicanimalfriends.co.uk

David Melling

David Melling has been shortlisted for the Kate Greenaway Medal, the Smarties Book Award and the Independent Booksellers Award. His Hugless Douglas books have sold over 1.4 million copies worldwide, and the loveable brown bear has starred in a World Book Day book as well as his own theatre show. Before becoming an internationally acclaimed author-illustrator, David worked as an animation artist for films including the much-loved Father Christmas by Raymond Briggs. One of his most popular picture books The Tale of Jack Frost was animated and shown on BBC1 on Christmas Day.

Enid Blyton

Enid Blyton's books have sold over 500 million copies and have been translated into other languages more often than any other children's author.She wrote over 600 books and hundreds of short stories, including favourites such as The Famous Five,The Secret Seven, The Magic Faraway Tree, Malory Towers and Noddy. Born in London in 1897, Enid lived much of her life in Buckinghamshire and adored dogs, gardening and the countryside. She died in 1968 but remains one of the world's best-loved storytellers.

Francesca Simon

Francesca Simon worked for 12 years as a freelance arts journalist, writing for the Sunday times, and The Guardian amongst others. Francesca wrote her first children's book in 1989 and has gone from strength to strength ever since. She lives in London with her husband and son.Francesca Simon spent her childhood on the beach in California, and then went to Yale and Oxford Universities to study medieval history and literature. She now lives in London with her family. She has written over 50 books and won THE CHILDREN'S BOOK OF THE YEAR at the Galaxy British Book Awards for HORRID HENRY AND THE ABOMINABLE SNOWMAN. Visit Francesca's website at www.francescasimon.com and keep up-to-date with Horrid Henry at www.horridhenry.co.uk. You can also follow her on Twitter @simon_francesca

Georgia Amson-Bradshaw

Georgia Amson-Bradshaw is a children's writer and editor who lives in Brighton, East Sussex. She has worked on a number of high-profile and award-winning science books for kids, including the Royal Society Young People's Book Prize winner Eye Benders, and the London Science Museum activity book This Book Thinks You're a Scientist. She remembers the eye-opening and inspiring effect her favourite books had on her as a child, and so takes her responsibility to pass that interest and excitement on very seriously!

Geraldo Valerio

Geraldo Valerio was born in Brazil and is now a Canadian citizen living in Toronto. He graduated from the School of Fine Arts at the Federal University of Minas Gerais, and in 2000 received a Master of Arts degree from New York University. He has illustrated more than 20 picture books for publishers in the UK, Canada, the United States, Portugal and Brazil.

Izzi Howell

Izzi Howell is the author and editor of over fifty children's books. She lives in East Sussex and enjoys learning languages, cooking and travelling around Europe.

James Mayhew

James Mayhew studied at Maidstone College of Art and his first children's book, Katie's Picture Show was published in 1989. It's been firmly in print ever since, recognised universally as the original and best introduction to art for children. Many more titles have followed, and the series sells in museums and galleries all over the world, from the Met in New York, to the Uffizi in Florence, the Louvre in Paris and beyond. He is also the creator of the much-loved Ella Bella Ballerina series, and many other titles. Alongside his work in publishing, James has devised and performed in a hugely successful series of concerts for children, combining live classical music, storytelling and live art. From Peter and the Wolf, to Scheherazade, James has worked internationally with many different orchestras and musicians, creating illustrations in time to music. James grew up in Suffolk but now lives in Hertfordshire.

Jamie Littler

Jamie is a St. Albans-based illustrator who graduated from the Arts Institute at Bournemouth in 2008, and won a High Commendation in the Macmillan Children's Book Award in the same year. Since then Jamie has worked with many varied clients, and his debut children's book, 'MUM'S THE WORD', written by Timothy Knapman, is to be published by Hodder Children's Books in 2013.He is the creator, writer and illustrator of the on-going comic series 'COGG & SPROKIT' which is serialised in the Phoenix Comic, and his debut fiction series 'ATOMIC!', published by Scholastic Children's Books, written and created by Guy Bass, was released in 2012. When not trying to tame his un-naturally fast growing hair, he likes drawing, colouring in, cutting things out and sticking things in. Whatever medium he uses, Jamie tries to create a 'hand-made', organic and energetic feeling in his work. His interests are pretty wide and varied; although he does have a soft spot for wild animals and things that go bump in the night.Jamie is represented by Jodie Marsh at United Agents.Jamie Littler graduated from the Arts Institute at Bournemouth in 2008. He has won a High Commendation Award at the Macmillan Children's Book Awards and is the creator of 'Cogg and Sprokit', which is serialised in the PHOENIX. He has worked on high-profile projects including The Famous Five. Follow him on Twitter @jamieillustrate or visit his website at http://jamielittler.co.uk/

Jim Field

A lead-driven, pencil-pushing, 25-frames-per-second, Led Zeppelin fan, Jim Field is also a hugely talented illustrator and animation director. His first picture book Cats Ahoy! won the Roald Dahl Funny Prize. The bestselling Oi Frog! books, written by Kes Gray, have been shortlisted for numerous prizes, as has The Lion Inside with Rachel Bright. His vibrant, energetic style and witty detail delight children and adults alike.

Katharine McEwen

Katharine McEwen has been illustrating since graduating from Kingston University in 1996. To date she has illustrated around 40 titles and is fortunate to have worked with some fantastic authors, such as Allan Ahlberg, Michael Rosen and Giles Andreae. She is currently embarking on becoming an authorstrator (or should that be illustrauthor?!), but finds the writing part enjoyable, but very tricky!When not illustrating books, Katharine attempts to throw pots (in a making them way, not an angry way) and is endeavouring to get better at it. She also loves a good movie, rummaging in a junk shops, chin-wagging with her chums and taking photographs.

Katie Dale

Katie Dale had her first poem 'The Fate of The School Hamster' published in The Cadbury's Book of Children's Poetry, aged 8 and hasn't stopped writing since. On graduating, she went travelling through South-East Asia - only to discover whilst in a Vietnam internet cafe that she was a winner of the SCBWI 2008 Undiscovered Voices competition.

Liz Kessler

Liz Kessler studied English at Loughborough University, has worked as a teacher and a journalist and has an MA in Creative Writing from Manchester Metropolitan University. After taking a year off to travel around Europe in a camper van, Liz now lives in Cornwall.Find out more at www.lizkessler.co.uk, follow her on Twitter @lizkesslerbooks and like her on Facebook at facebook.com/lizkesslerchildrensauthor.

Margaret Mayo

Margaret Mayo is an acclaimed storyteller and author who has been creating stories for children for over 35 years. She has written more than 50 books, including the bestselling Dig Dig Digging, Choo Choo Clickety-Clack! and Stomp, Dinosaur, Stomp! A former teacher, Margaret uses her wide-ranging experience with children in her writing. She lives in Brighton.

Pat-a-Cake

Pat-a-Cake takes you and your child on a magical journey. From sharing the very first baby book to watching your little one read all by themselves. The adventure begins here . . .

Paul Thurlby

Paul Thurlby has been a full-time illustrator since 2006. He has worked in advertising, editorial and T-shirt design, as well as publishing. His first book, Alphabet, won the BolognaRagazzi Opera Prima award in 2013. His inspiration comes from mid-century design and illustration. His style is retro-modern, with retro aesthetics and modern subject matter.