Related to: 'Sleep Easy: A Mindfulness Guide to Getting a Good Night's Sleep'

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…

Franklin Watts


Paul Christelis, Ximena Jeria
Paul Christelis, Ximena Jeria

A perfect book for addressing the things that can cause children to be anxious and worried. This hands-on picture book is designed to help children with their questions and feelings about tricky topics that can be hard to talk about. The exquisite and approachable illustrations give a comforting story book feel, particularly aimed at 5-7 year olds, while also appealing to both younger and older children. This is a much-needed aid to help children open up and explore how they feel and give them steps they can take to help them cope.

Franklin Watts

Breath by Breath: A Mindfulness Guide to Feeling Calm

Paul Christelis, Elisa Paganelli
Paul Christelis, Elisa Paganelli
Franklin Watts

Get Outdoors: A Mindfulness Guide to Noticing Nature

Paul Christelis, Elisa Paganelli
Paul Christelis, Elisa Paganelli
Franklin Watts

Exploring Emotions: A Mindfulness Guide to Dealing with Emotions

Paul Christelis, Elisa Paganelli
Paul Christelis, Elisa Paganelli

Everyone notices the weather outside, right? But did you realise that weather occurs inside of you too? In fact, it is here right now... It's a hot and sunny Sports Day, but Abu's internal weather is different. He is feeling nervous and scared. For Abu, feeling nervous is like watching a storm approaching: it can be scary. Manisha's weather is different She feels angry. Anger is like a burning, hot sun. Kenton feels sad. For Kenton, sadness feels like a grey, drizzly day that seems to last forever. But they all soon discover that emotions are like the weather, changing throughout the day. Sometimes the weather feels pleasant; when we feel happy, relieved or excited. And sometimes it feels unpleasant; when we feel anger, sadness or frustration. But we don't have to worry about getting stuck with unpleasant emotions because, just like the weather outside, the weather inside will change too. This book teaches readers to enjoy the pleasant feelings when they are present, and remember that the unpleasant ones will pass. The four stories in the 'Mindful Me' series explore how a mindful attitude to life can enhance enjoyment, promote a sense of calm and confidence, and provide young people with a 'friend for life'. In this book, children are gently guided into mindfulness exercises that encourage an exploration of emotions. Mindfulness can help us to improve concentration, calm unpleasant emotions, and even boost our immune systems.The books can be used at home or in the classroom, for storytime or as part of the PSHCE curriculum.The other titles are:Breath by Breath: A Mindfulness Guide to Keeping CalmIt's Beautiful Outdoors: A Mindfulness Guide to Noticing NatureSleep Easy: A Mindfulness Guide to Getting a Good Night's Sleep

Orchard Books

I Am Not Sleepy and I Will Not Go to Bed

Lauren Child
Lauren Child

A classic Charlie & Lola story about tricky bedtimes from Children's Laureate Lauren Child.Charlie has this little sister Lola. Sometimes he has to try and get her to go to bed. This is a hard job because Lola likes to stay up late. Lola says, "I am not slightly sleepy at 6 or 7 or 8. I am still wide awake at 9 and not at all tired at 10, 11 and 12 and I will probably still be perky at even 13 o'clock in the morning."An innovative and fun-filled look at tricky bedtimes, this classic picture book will appeal to parents and children alike.As seen on CBeebies!

Lee Wildish

Lee Wildish is an acclaimed illustrator. His Spooky, Spooky House won the Overall Red House Children's Book Award, his Spaghetti with the Yeti was shortlisted for the Roald Dahl Funny Book Prize, and he has been shortlisted for the Kate Greenaway Award and the Sheffield Children's Book Award.

Lisa Regan

Lisa Regan is an experienced writer of children's fiction and non-fiction books.

Maxine Beneba Clarke

Maxine Beneba Clarke is a widely published Australian writer of Afro-Caribbean descent. Maxine's short fiction, non-fiction and poetry have been published in numerous publications including Overland, The Age, Meanjin, The Saturday Paper and The Big Issue. Her critically acclaimed short fiction collection Foreign Soil won the ABIA for Literary Fiction Book of the Year 2015 and the 2015 Indie Book Award for Debut Fiction, and was shortlisted for the Matt Richell Award for New Writing at the 2015 ABIAs and the 2015 Stella Prize. She was also named as one of the Sydney Morning Herald's Best Young Novelists for 2015. Maxine has published three poetry collections including Carrying the World, which won the Victorian Premier's Literary Award for Poetry 2017 and was shortlisted for the Colin Roderick Award. The Hate Race, a memoir about growing up black in Australia won the NSW Premier's Literary Award Multicultural NSW Award 2017 and was shortlisted for an ABIA, an Indie Award, the Victorian Premier's Literary Awards and Stella Prize. The Patchwork Bike, Maxine's first picture book with Van T. Rudd was a CBCA Honour Book for 2017.

Mick Inkpen

Mick Inkpen has been a bestselling children's author for over 25 years. He is one of today's most popular picture book author/illustrators and the famous creator of both Kipper and Wibbly Pig. Mick has won the Children's Book Award for Threadbear and the British Book Award twice, for Penguin Small and Lullabyhullaballoo. Kipper won a BAFTA for Best Animated Film.

Mick Manning

Mick Manning (born in Yorkshire, England, 1959) and Brita Granström (born in Eskilstuna, Sweden, 1969) work together as a team sharing the illustration and text. They have been producing award-winning non-fiction picture books for almost twenty years. They show that the best non-fiction for children can be scholarly, albeit with a light touch, and can have some of the imagination-stretching qualities of fiction. They are well known for their exciting performances involving readings and live drawing using overhead camera projection (often involving participation from members of the audience) all mixed with an audio-visual presentation. They appear on a regular basis at major UK book festival venues such as Bath, Cheltenham and Edinburgh International Book Festival. They have appeared at The Royal Society Science Festival and have celebrated The Big Draw at various venues including The Imperial War Museum. They have worked closely to support libraries and schools, performing voluntarily to school classes in the UK and Sweden and have also attended the American Library Conference and visited US schools.Many of Manning & Granström's books are translated into a number of languages, including Chinese, German, Greek, Danish, Japanese, Norwegian, Swedish and Slovakian. For the last 12 years Mick & Brita have created, written and illustrated a monthly 5-page gentle pre-school series called 'Max and Kate' for the critically acclaimed US children's magazine Ladybug. Selection of Franklin Watts books:The World Is Full of Babies! (Smarties Silver Award Winner); What's under the Bed? (TES Award Winner); Wash, Scrub, and Brush (English Association Award KS1 Winner); Stone Age, Bone Age and many other Wonderwise titles; How Did I Begin? (Rhone Poulenc Science prize winner); How Should I Behave?; Seaside Scientist; My Body Book; My Uncle's Dunkirk; Charlie's War Illustrated (English Association Award KS2 Winner); The Story of Britain; The Brontës - Children of the Moors.

Miranda Richardson

Miranda Richardson has appeared in films such as THE HOURS, SLEEPY HOLLOW, THE CRYING GAME, EMPIRE OF THE SUN and HARRY POTTER AND THE GOBLET OF FIRE. TV work includes A DANCE TO THE MUSIC OF TIME, JACKANORY, Queen Elizabeth in BLACKADDER and Queen Mary in THE LOST PRINCE. She has won two Spoken Word awards for her inspired readings of HORRID HENRY AND THE SECRET CLUB and HORRID HENRY'S STINKBOMB audiobooks for Orion.

Moira Butterfield

I have been writing for many years in a number of different genres, from books for babies up to books for 11 year-olds plus. I like to try new things and tackle new subjects, so I don't limit myself to one type of book. One month I might be writing about history, and the next month I might be creating an imaginary story. Examples of my work have been selected for national Key Stage study in the UK, and in the USA I was commended by the Library of Congress for my work in non-fiction, which they felt encouraged reluctant readers. I work with visuals always in mind, and love the challenge of getting across information or an exciting story with good graphics to back it up. Lately I have been blogging about the craft of writing, and I've also appeared at National Book Festivals, which I think of as the most challenging thing of all to do! I get a lot of emails from children around the world, inspired by one of my books they have read, and that gives me great pleasure.

Polly Peters

Polly Peters is a former English and drama teacher and community theatre writer and director. With Andrew Fusek Peters she has produced over 40 books. POEMS WITH ATTITUDE and POEMS WITH ATTITUDE UNCENSORED were both Education Guardian book of the week. She and Andrew live with their two children in rural Shropshire.

Rosie Banks

Rosie Banks is the author of brilliant series Secret Princesses and Secret Kingdom. You can find out all about Secret Princesses and much more at the series website:

Sarah Moore Fitzgerald

Sarah Moore Fitzgerald was born in New York in 1965 but grew up in Co. Dublin. She's a professor and associate vice president at the University of Limerick in Ireland, specialising in psychology and effective pedagogy in higher education, and has published several non-fiction books on teaching, learning and academic writing. She runs regular writers' retreats for academics and students in Ireland and internationally.Follow her on Twitter @SMooreFitz

Sarah Ridley

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.

Sue Graves

Sue Graves has been a freelance children's author for more than 17 years. She has written over two hundred books for children from pre-school up to 15+ years. She writes fiction and non fiction, plays and poetry across the age ranges. Sue loves reading all sorts of books and is at her happiest when she has a book in her hand. She also loves painting in watercolours, playing tennis and badminton and going for long walks in the country with her husband and children.

Tony Ross

Tony Ross is one of the most popular and successful of all children's illustrators, with many picture books to his name. He has also produced line drawings for many fiction titles.

Ursula Jones

Ursula Jones is an award-winning author and actress. She has written many books for children, including The Witch's Children and the Queen, winner of a Nestle Gold Award, The Witch's Children go to School, winner of the Roald Dahl Funny Prize, and the highly acclaimed The Princess Who Had No Kingdom. Ursula lives in London and France.

Van T Rudd

Van T Rudd is an award winning street artist, sculptor, painter and social justice activist based in Melbourne.He has exhibited his work widely around Australia and internationally. He won the 2015 Sampari West Papua Art Exhibition's People's Choice Award for his sculpture Let Rage, Unity and Love Take Form, and the NAVA (National Association of Visual Artists) Ignition Award for the exhibition Van Rudd vs Julia Gillard (2011). He was a two-time finalist (2007 and 2009) in the Sunshine Coast Art Prize for his paintings 100 000 to 400 000 and Freedom Furniture respectively, and a finalist in the Metro 5 Art Award (2004). In 2007, his Carriers Project was selected by Kultour and toured to major cities and towns around Australia. The Patchwork Bike is his first children's book.