What is JacketFlap

  • JacketFlap connects you to the work of more than 200,000 authors, illustrators, publishers and other creators of books for Children and Young Adults. The site is updated daily with information about every book, author, illustrator, and publisher in the children's / young adult book industry. Members include published authors and illustrators, librarians, agents, editors, publicists, booksellers, publishers and fans.
    Join now (it's free).

Sort Blog Posts

Sort Posts by:

  • in

Suggest a Blog

Enter a Blog's Feed URL below and click Submit:

Most Commented Posts

In the past 7 days

Recent Posts

(tagged with 'Medialynx')

Recent Comments

JacketFlap Sponsors

Spread the word about books.
Put this Widget on your blog!
  • Powered by JacketFlap.com

Are you a book Publisher?
Learn about Widgets now!

Advertise on JacketFlap

MyJacketFlap Blogs

  • Login or Register for free to create your own customized page of blog posts from your favorite blogs. You can also add blogs by clicking the "Add to MyJacketFlap" links next to the blog name in each post.

Blog Posts by Date

Click days in this calendar to see posts by day or month
new posts in all blogs
Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: Medialynx, Most Recent at Top [Help]
Results 1 - 25 of 165
1. While NY Geeks Out Next Weekend, So Cal Goes Punk

Not going to NYCC this year? Sure you could spend hours hunched over the computer waiting for the latest news to come out of the Javits center or if you like a little punk rock with your reading you can spend that Saturday enjoying a full day of art, literature, and music in San Bernardino CA […]

0 Comments on While NY Geeks Out Next Weekend, So Cal Goes Punk as of 1/1/1900
Add a Comment
2. Festival Report: In the Midst of Crisis, Animasyros Propels Greek Animation Industry

Greece doesn't have much of an animation industry, but Animasyros aims to change that. Cartoon Brew reports from Greece on what their animation industry looks like today.

0 Comments on Festival Report: In the Midst of Crisis, Animasyros Propels Greek Animation Industry as of 1/1/1900
Add a Comment
3. guardian children's literature festival 2015

For London's very first Guardian Children's Lit Fest, it seemed important to make an effort...

...or at least to MAKE AN ENTRANCE.

My co-author Philip Reeve and I were thrilled to be part of it. The Guardian Children's Book website hosts loads of amazing material in a time when children's book journalism in the major newspapers is very scarce. Emily Drabble and her team have been doing a great job of getting the word out. You can follow them on Twitter at @GdnChildrensBks. (I've done several how-to-draw tutorials for them, including how to draw a Hungry T-Rex, Jampires and a Silly Unicorn.)

So Philip and I brought along our brand new book, Pugs of the Frozen North:

And encountered several PERILS along the way:

But together with the audience's help, we plotted our way through them to reach the North Pole.

Here's a picture we drew right before the event: I drew Philip and he drew me! (It's fun working with a writer who's also an illustrator.)

With the addiction of a giant die, things got awfully exciting:

Sadly, I didn't get a chance to go to any of the other events, but they looked ace. On the way to our book signing, I passed Joseph Coehlo in poetry mid-flow:

And I'd seen on social media that Paul Stickland had been preparing to paint a giant dinosaur:

Photo by Paul Stickland

And I was just about to jump in and paint with him...

Photo by Paul Stickland

... but then I was whisked away, back into the sky. (Thanks for the photo, Paul!) I think Paul's posted a video somewhere of the giant T-Rex he drew; it was pretty awesome.

Photo by Paul Stickland

...Back in the sky, where I was met by my trusty steed, the Dartmoor Pegasus. Ha ha, I just had to share this one, posted by Mathew Tobin (@Mat_at_Brookes on Twitter, GrimResistance on Reddit):

Big thanks to the Guardian team, to Emily, to everyone who came along, to OUP publicist Sarah Howells, and to Stuart for carrying ukuleles, blowing up the giant die and being generally fabulous.

Add a Comment
4. Festival by Pixelatl Director José Iñesta: “Animation Can Change the Fate of Mexico”

The director of Mexico's leading animation conference speaks with "Cartoon Brew" about the future of Mexican animation.

0 Comments on Festival by Pixelatl Director José Iñesta: “Animation Can Change the Fate of Mexico” as of 9/9/2015 7:45:00 PM
Add a Comment
5. Don Hertzfeldt’s ‘World of Tomorrow’ Leads Fantoche 2015 Awards

Don Hertzfeldt continues his winning streak in Switzerland.

0 Comments on Don Hertzfeldt’s ‘World of Tomorrow’ Leads Fantoche 2015 Awards as of 9/13/2015 3:15:00 PM
Add a Comment
6. Snoozefest – Perfect Picture Book Friday

Title: Snoozefest Written by: Samantha Berger Illustrated by: Kristinya Litten Published by: Dial Books for Young Readers, 2015 Themes/Topics: Sloths, sleep, festivals Suitable for ages: 3-7 Opening: In the center of Snoozeville, dwells the wee one,                   … Continue reading

Add a Comment
7. 11 Ways Animation Festivals Can Support Filmmakers

A filmmaker offers a few tips for festivals to attract animators—and ensure that they keep coming back.

0 Comments on 11 Ways Animation Festivals Can Support Filmmakers as of 6/10/2015 3:57:00 PM
Add a Comment
8. As Animation Booms Globally, So Does Annecy

Annecy's Marcel Jean and Mickael Marin speak with Cartoon Brew about the Annecy festival, which begins today in France.

0 Comments on As Animation Booms Globally, So Does Annecy as of 1/1/1900
Add a Comment
9. Annecy 2015: Thoughts From a First-Time Attendee

Observations and tips from a first-time attendee of the world's largest animation festival.

0 Comments on Annecy 2015: Thoughts From a First-Time Attendee as of 7/3/2015 4:28:00 PM
Add a Comment
10. DIY democracy: Festivals, parks, and fun

Wimbledon has started, the barbeques have been dusted off, the sun is shining, and all our newly elected MPs will soon be leaving Westminster for the summer recess. Domestic politics, to some extent, winds down for July and August but the nation never seems to collapse. Indeed, the summer months offer a quite different focus on, for example, a frenzy of festivals and picnics in the park. But could this more relaxed approach to life teach us something about how we ‘do’ politics? Is politics really taking place at festivals and in the parks? Can politics really be fun?

The post DIY democracy: Festivals, parks, and fun appeared first on OUPblog.

0 Comments on DIY democracy: Festivals, parks, and fun as of 1/1/1900
Add a Comment
11. Fairy Sewing Project

About a month ago I started a project, a sewing project. I decided to create my own costume for the World of Faeries Festival, something I've always wanted to do, but never felt I had the know how or guts to do.

I decided it was time to just "do it".

Although each step took several deep breaths, I am very happy to say I know how to use my machine well enough to sew without a manual, and I am way more confident in using the foot and speed. :) The costume is coming along too. It'll be interesting to see it all come together in the end.

When designing, and as I continue to create this costume, I keep asking myself "What would one of my fairies wear?". I want to personify one of my own creations. When do we ever get that opportunity!? It's way fun!!

Here are some progress shots. :)


Took apart a beautiful skirt to make my own "artist" apron. It will also allow for no cashbox.

A crown of course!

My parents bought me a beautiful costume for the ren faires this past Christmas. I decided to modify the chemise to make it longer and more like my fairies' design.

Apron on the chemise. The idea is to have a half bodice in the future, but for now this will do.
Also, HUGE shout out to my mom, who did all of the hemming and sewing for the apron!! 

0 Comments on Fairy Sewing Project as of 7/24/2015 3:30:00 PM
Add a Comment
12. Ottawa 2015 Selections Announced

Seventy-nine animated films were selected for competition at Ottawa this year.

0 Comments on Ottawa 2015 Selections Announced as of 7/30/2015 2:09:00 AM
Add a Comment
13. Tonight in New York: Animation Block Party Opening Night

The opening night screening is free and open to the public.

0 Comments on Tonight in New York: Animation Block Party Opening Night as of 1/1/1900
Add a Comment
14. edinburgh book festival 2015

Once a lonely hunter ventured out upon the ice
The wind was howling fearful cold
It wasn't very nice
Then out of the swirling snow some tiny dogs burst forth...

Photo tweeted by Tom Gates author Liz Pichon

...And thus begins the theme song of the new Reeve & McIntyre book, which launched at this year's Edinburgh Book Festival!

Now, Philip Reeve and I might get taken more seriously by grown-ups as Proper Authors if we turned up for events wearing black turtlenecks, stroking our chins, and taking turns giving dour gazes into the middle distance. But that's been done before and isn't half as much fun.

Photo tweeted by writer Gwyneth Rees

Last year we came space-themed (photos here), and this year we started with a handy shirt my husband, Stuart, had bought years ago in a market in Moscow, and built up the costumes from there. We thought we'd avoid blue (too much like another Frozen) or red (I'm not Mrs Claus) and I love the yellow on our book cover, a look I'd borrowed from the Japanese edition of our earlier book Oliver and the Seawigs! I seldom think foreign publishers actually improve on our covers, but the Japanese totally did.

Here's our Pugs cover evolution. (And I just saw that our American publishers have gone public with a blue cover.)

Photo by Stuart

Of course books aren't ALL about cover colours and costume. But there are millions of books in the world and somehow we have to figure out how to make ours jump off the shelves. Besides, dressing up makes going on stage much easier somehow. It's like being in a play. This time the excellent Esther Marfo sewed my dress to my drawing of it. Here she is in her workshop:

And here's the icicle tiara I made, with plastic soda bottles, a comb, scissors, a candle and a glue gun.

You can learn how to do almost anything on the Internet. Here's a tutorial I adapted to make the tiara. It was a lot of fun to make, and not too tricky, after I'd messed up the first couple icicles.

And my Aunt Joy just happened to give me this dog-paw necklace on my recent trip to the USA, so thank you, Auntie! Selfie with Stuart in our Edinburgh hotel lift:

And yes, we did look a lot like traveling balalaika players. Which is GREAT, everyone loves a good long balalaika album, or two, or twenty-two. Our Oxford University Press designer, Jo Cameron, created this terrific album cover for us:

And Philip created a special edition of our standard anti-yeti spray. Very important to take along, when you're journeying to the Frozen North.

Ah, a chance to try it out in the Author Yurt, on one of Edinburgh's most famous yeti, Philip Ardagh!

Hmm... did it work?

Oh dear. Not only did it not work, but it seems to have caused that yeti to REPLICATE. ...Or wait, is that writer AF Harrold? It's hard to be sure.

Printed photo by festival photographer Chris Close

I was thrilled to bits that illustrator Steven Lenton came along to our event and took this Pugs-in-action photo. He's the first speaker in Nosy Crow's Illustrator Salon, hosting its first event in London on 14 Sept (with plans to feature non-Nosy Crow illustrators, too). Nosy Crow's Tom Bonnick set it up partly in response to the #PicturesMeanBusiness campaign to get illustrators credited for their work, and encourage people to take an interest in talking about a book's pictures and finding out more about who made them. You can book tickets to the Illustrator Salon here, and read more about the campaign at www.picturesmeanbusiness.com.

Philip and I can't imagine not bigging up both the writing AND the pictures in our book, and we love how kids get excited when they discover they can make a simple drawing and have it come out well. Here are some of the audience's pug drawings that we got to see when we met them afterward at the book signing.

You can learn how to KNIT your own pug over on my website here.

I love this girl's drawing of me, and Philip and me in our preferred way of arriving at book festivals.

After we finished our first event, Stuart, Philip and I popped over to Blackwell's Edinburgh to meet Fiona and sign some copies of our various books. (You might still find a few signed Pugs books there if you're quick.)

Thanks for the lovely write-up, Fiona! :)

Then it seemed appropriate to pay our respects to Edinburgh's own canine hero, Greyfriars Bobby. (You can read his story here.

But it wasn't all PUGS at Edinburgh, that was just the latest book! I also had a storming DINOSAUR POLICE event to do. Here was the view of Edinburgh Castle on the second morning, from the stairwell in our hotel.

I donned a vintage frock and yellow gloves I'd found last week in Seattle with my sister and met up with Dinosaur Dave, aka David Sanger from Scholastic UK. Dave made a great dinosaur, roaring, rampaging around the tent and falling asleep on the floor and snoring loudly, right in the middle of the stage. Thanks, Dave!

I wore my lucky Officer Brachio badge, stitched by Sami Teasdale.

And here are some T-Rex drawings!

In Dinosaur Police, Trevor the T-Rex escapes from the pizza factory with pizzas still stuck all over his body, so a lot of these dinosaurs had food stuck to them, too.


One of the coolest thing was seeing kids who were repeat visitors, either from previous years or from the previous day's Pugs event. Thanks for coming back, guys!

And I love it when everyone draws, not just the kids! Here's a fab T-Rex tweeted by writer Pamela Butchart. Big thanks to everyone who came along! You can learn how to draw your own T-Rex and more on my website right here.

My one big disappointment about this year's Edinburgh Book Festival was that my event was on at almost the exact same time as Philip Reeve's event with his co-author Kjartan Poskitt. They worked together years ago on the Murderous Maths books, and recently have been doing the Borgon the Axeboy books together, with Reeve illustrating and Poskitt writing. (Poskitt's name also appears as a god in the Mortal Engines books.)

Of course, I pestered them as much as I could before and after our events...

...But I saw this photo tweeted by their Faber publicist of Philip lying on the floor on stage, and was GUTTED I hadn't see it myself.

When we were out and about with Stuart, we caught sight of the bus to Clovenstone, the name Philip borrowed for the land where he set his GOBLINS trilogy.

Go read the GOBLINS books, they're ace!

A few other sightings of writers and illustrators whose names you may recognise... here's writer Moira Young with Philip Ardagh:

And writer Patrick Gale, who hosted us at last year's North Cornwall book festival!

And here in the centre is the excellent person who runs the whole show, the children's book section of the festival, Janet Smyth! I got to meet all three generations! Here she is with her mum and daughter, who was also working for the festival. Huge thanks for making it so fabulous!

Oo, it's the always-super-photogenic comic creators, the Etherington Brothers! (Who are actual brothers and make comics together, which is the coolest thing ever.)

And Naomi Alderman, who writes the scripts for Zombies, Run!, among many other things.

With writer-illustrator Steve Anthony:

Comics creator Jamie Littler, who recently illustrated a book with writer Danny Wallace:

Liz Pichon's Tom Gates fingernails:

Writer Nicola Morgan has done loads of work for the Society of Authors CWIG committee (Children's Writers & Illustrators Group) and done research into why Author Visits to schools are such an important thing in getting kids excited about reading, writing and drawing, and advice on Author Visit fees.

Amazing double-act, illustrator Steven Lenton and Tracey Corderoy (and friends):

Illustrator Emma Dodd:

And I even got to catch up and draw with some of my Scottish relatives! Here's a picture I drew of Eve and Callum at dinner:

Stuart and I were so busy at this festival that we didn't get much time to wander about, but we did take a good walk along the Royal Mile and see all the other performers, which made me feel very normal in my own costume.

Excellent elephant puppet:

Big thanks to Janet Smyth, my Scholastic team Dave Sanger and Sophia Pemberton, our OUP team Elaine McQuade and Keo Baxendine, Joely Badger and all the staff and volunteers who made the festival run so smoothly.

And biggest thanks to lovely Stuart, who read through my Pugs script with me, listened to my ukulele practicing, helped me zip up costumes, helped carry luggage, and generally made the trip more pleasant. My hero! :)

I meant to draw a nice festival round-up picture on the train, but I was so shattered that this was all I managed:

If you missed our events in Edinburgh, we're gearing up for the PUGS ROADSHOW, so check on my Events page to see if we stop near you!

You can read Philip's Edinburgh blog here, and the Bookwitch has already blogged about our Pugs event here.

Add a Comment
15. New Symposium of Animated Abstract Art Comes to Spain

For those who like their animation in its purest form: a feast of form, color, motion and sound in Spain.

0 Comments on New Symposium of Animated Abstract Art Comes to Spain as of 4/13/2015 5:49:00 PM
Add a Comment
16. Europe’s FMX Conference Celebrates Joe Letteri, Pixar, and ILM

The 20th anniversary edition of the conference will present some major industry players.

0 Comments on Europe’s FMX Conference Celebrates Joe Letteri, Pixar, and ILM as of 4/16/2015 8:01:00 PM
Add a Comment
17. Pixar’s ‘Inside Out’ and ‘The Little Prince’ Will Premiere at Cannes

Festival director Thierry Frémaux continues to show his love for animation.

0 Comments on Pixar’s ‘Inside Out’ and ‘The Little Prince’ Will Premiere at Cannes as of 4/17/2015 4:13:00 PM
Add a Comment
18. lismore castle: stepping into a storybook

I've read stories about princesses who have rooms in 'the highest room in the tallest tower' of a castle, but I never thought I'd actually get to live that story for a weekend!

When former Irish Children's Laureate Niamh Sharkey got in touch to see if I wanted to be part of a new festival at Lismore Castle called Towers and Tales, of course I said yes. And I brought along my trusty Jampire (knitted by Ann Lam). I'd been asked to do some picture book events for Jampires and There's a Shark in the Bath (but sadly, I seem to have lost my inflatable shark). Here's a drawing inspired by one of the Van Dyke paintings on the wall in the dining room:

It was better even than staying in a castle; we got to stay there with the family who own it, and they were so kind and gracious and provided HEAPS of food! Here's my writer friend Philip Ardagh, tucking in. (We did a lot of tucking in.)

And I wore a lot of hats. But not one with Philip Ardagh on it, unlike Lady Betty Compton, who couldn't resist:

(Ha ha, here are the two paintings the drawings are based on.)

And here I am in the entrance hall with lovely writer-illustrator Chris Riddell, when we first arrived, both of us looking slightly overawed and massively excited.

But I really ought to go back and start chronologically. What's it like, going to visit a big fancy castle? Well, here's Ardagh with his leprechauns, about to board the flight at Gatwick Airport.

And Riddell, who really does draw all the time.

Look, he drew me!

I sketched him, but I was slightly intimidated. Both of us had met book deadlines the night before we left - I finished Pugs of the Frozen North and he finished the third Goth Girl book - and we were both a bit shattered and had packed in a big rush.

Chris let me borrow his super-duper brush pen and I liked how the lines came out on this drawing a bit better. (Note: must order myself a Japanese Kurtake Million Years brush pen.) It's nicer than my Pentel brush pen and I can get more control with it.

After a driver brought us from Cork Airport to the castle, one of the first people we met was William Burlington, who owns the castle with his wife, Laura. He was so kind and down-to-earth and made us feel utterly welcome and at ease.

He and Laura are really into art (that's how they met) and have added some beautiful pieces to the family collection and set up a gallery in the castle and another in the town. But William's also a photographer and I found his website here, with some beautiful portraits. Here's a lovely picture he took of painter Sir Terry Frost (who, coincidentally, had a solo show in 2001 at the gallery that I used to run with friends).

I couldn't believe it when the footman helped me haul my suitcase up the stairs to the bedroom where I would be staying. Here's Jampire sitting on our bed, looking a little bit amazed.

And looking out the bedroom window:

We regrouped for drinks in a beautiful sitting room. Here's Philip, looking rather magnificent.

And Chris on a very flumpy sofa:

Somehow Chris managed to draw a picture of us while he was talking, which is something I find very difficult. I either make a bad drawing or I have the most spaced-out conversation, but he manages to be articulate AND draw, which is quite a skill.

We were given lovely customised festival welcome packs. Check out my hand-drawn shark!

Here's writer Archie Kimpton holding up Jumble Cat from his book with illustrator Kate Hindley.

I share an agent with Kate and absolutely ADORE her work, so I shall have to look out for these two books:

Then we had Afternoon Tea, looked a bit around the gardens, and pottered down the road as a group to see an art exhibition at St Carthage Hall, which is part of the Lismore Castle Arts project. Then it was time to get dressed for dinner. (Actually, William and Laura were so easygoing that I don't think we really had to worry about what we wore, but as you know, I like a good frock.) Here I am at my dressing table, feeling like I'm on the set of Gosford Park.

Such a fabulous dinner! That's Laura, standing on the right, and the butler, Denis, standing next to her. I'd heard about the super-efficiency of Denis, but I sat next to William on the second night's dinner and he said he'd been working for the family for over 30 years. And I got a sense of just HOW quick-on-the-mark he is when I was being filmed on the second day and said I needed to go get my ukulele. And seconds later, Dennis suddenly appeared with another ukulele from a cupboard, in case I wanted to use that one. I was massively impressed.

Here's William's sister, their actor friend Dominic West and Elaina Ryan from Children's Books Ireland.

Then lots of people chilled out on the flumpy sofa. Here's Brown Bag animation director Norton Virgien, Elaina, writer Marie-Louise Fitzpatrick, Niamh Sharkey, and Niamh's husband.

I finally couldn't keep my eyes open any longer, and also, I had ambitions of trying out the huge bathtub in my room. But I ended up going to sleep quite late because there was so much to look at, even in my room, including a bunch of old copies of Vogue:

Funnily enough, there was even a long 1935 feature article about Bryn Mawr College, where I'd gone to university, and the article was hilariously anti-feminist. There were loads of funny bits but here's one:

I was talking later to Laura, and she said that they'd found the magazines after the room had been derelict for awhile and was being rennovated. They've been bought by Adele Astaire, the sister of Fred Astaire. And she said that when Fred and Adele had started out, she'd looked even more promising as an actor and dancer than he had. So I did a bit of research on Adele before falling asleep and found this video, with the Lismore Castle link. How cool that we'd been reading the same magazines!

The next morning was FESTIVAL DAY. And the sun shone brightly on the castle's towers!

I reached out the bedroom window to take these photos.

Fortunately we didn't have too early of a start - the festival didn't start until 11am and my first event wasn't until noon - very civilised! I'd seen a small staircase next to my room and heard from secretary Ed Lamba that the Gruffalo had been doing a photo shoot earlier on the roof. So I made a little foray up it, to see if it was the roof staircase. It wound up a very long way.

First I came out on a high platform where I met a friendly plasterer named Pat, who was fixing the crenelations by replastering them and drilling metal strengthening rods through them. He took me up a level higher to the very tip of the tallest tower. WHOA!

Then there was a great comedy moment when I had to go back down the ladder through the little trap door but I went down and my skirts and petticoats didn't, with a great FWOOMP, and billowed out around the top of the stair hole. So Pat fought back laughter as I had to go around tucking all the bits of my skirt back down the hole, so I could at last descend and go to breakfast.

Once again, it felt like something out of Gosford Park or Rebecca. I remember this one scene in Rebecca where the second Mrs de Winter has a huge breakfast buffet to choose from but only takes a boiled egg (or was it a little bit of fish?) and worries about all the food going to waste. Philip and I did our bit and I don't think anything will have gone to waste.

It was fun to see the castle courtyard gearing up for the festival, with lots of people in costumes.

I got to draw some characters on the library bus:

I did a big of song warmup (Photo borrowed from CBI on Twitter):

And then it was time for SHARKS! I read There's a Shark in the Bath to the big assembled crowd of kids and parents at the Heritage Centre and we sang the Shark song. (It was a bit tricky, not having my stage show buddy Philip Reeve there to lead the kids in the song motions and do all the Papa Shark voices, like we did at Mountains to Sea festival, but we did all right.)

Then I led them in making paper sharks! I usually just have the kids draw sharks, but wonderful organiser Maura O'Keeffe provided quality paper and craft supplies, so we were able to make them look extra special. I loved how they all had such different personalities!

Then the Heritage Centre coordinator hung the sharks out front on the railings, which hopefully did not intimidate any passersby TOO much. (Photo borrowed from the Lismore Heritage Centre Facebook page.)

I came back to the castle for a quick costume change, and William's brother-in-law decided he'd play the Queen of Hearts, so I helped him out with a hair pom-pom and lipstick.

His real name's Nicky but he made me guess his name, so I called him Colin all weekend.

And I got to sit in for a story about a dragon from Dominic.

I didn't manage to get a photo of writer Darren Shan, but I said a quick hello to writer Shane Hegarty between events:

And writer Sarah Webb, who'd organised Mountains to Sea festival in Dun Laoghaire. (You can see my blog post from that here.)

My next event was a Jampires Hat-making tea party. (http://www.jampires.com">Jampires</a> is the book I created with David O'Connell and featured creatures who suck the jam out of doughnuts.) I'd never actually done this event before, but Maura said she could supply all the materials, so I decided to try it.

The hardest thing was drilling holes in the paper plates and getting everything to stick on; the Pritt sticks and glue weren't so helpful but we made good use of the elastic, staplers and pipe cleaners to anchor everything.

The hats came out very nicely! I loved the netting, it made everything bigger and frothier.

And the pom-poms were good fun.

We even had a couple adults making hats, such as this one:

And here are some of the finished hats!

Then I had a big tired flop in this beautiful room (I could live happily in this room), and Mike Skinner from The Streets came and filmed me for a documentary video about the festival.

Then another lovely Afternoon Tea with the festival volunteers, and pre-dinner drinks:

William gave great kudos to Maura O'Keeffe (pictured here) for all her excellent planning work.

After dinner, I took photos of Niamh and her daughter, who was proudly wearing the hat she'd made at our workshop. (Yay!) The whole festival idea came about from a conversation one evening in this room, when William, Laura, Niamh and John Huddy from the Illustration Cupboard were having dinner. Lismore had hosted lots of arts events, but no children's book events, and this was a first.

I desperately wanted to stay awake so I wouldn't miss anything, but by 1am, my eyes just wouldn't stay open, I was babbling like an idiot and I had to go to bed. So I was quite envious of Philip, who managed to stay up with the gang until 5am! Many fine drinks and tower-climbing shenanigans. But we had an early flight back to London and Philip didn't look quite so hot when he came down to breakfast at 6am. It was hard to leave. I wrote a message in the guest book:

Chris made a drawing:

Jampire flat-out refused to go.

When I finally got him out of bed, he took long, weepy looks out the window at the sun rising over the Blackwater River. I knew how he felt, this was a storybook I didn't want to close. There were so many things I'd missed and still wanted to do: explore the gardens more, catch a glimpse of the kitchen, take a walk in the woods and see all the follies, see the castle art gallery. But I felt tremendously lucky to have been able to do and see as much as I had.

Jampire was not so mature and the only way I could convince him to come out of the room was to leave a copy of Jampires, so at least some of his friends could stay.

But then he threw a final tantrum on the lawn and could not be consoled.

Thanks so much, William, Laura, Maura, Niamh, John, Denis, Ed, and all the staff and volunteers who made this festival happen. You were amazing!

PS It's not inexpensive, but if you have a party of 16 people or more and want to hire Lismore Castle and its 21 bedrooms, you can find details on its website. And if you want to see an earlier blog post I did about visiting Chatsworth (where William's parents live), you can visit it here.

Add a Comment
19. Annecy Selects 17 Feature Films For 2015 Edition

A record 73 animated features were submitted to the festival this year.

0 Comments on Annecy Selects 17 Feature Films For 2015 Edition as of 1/1/1900
Add a Comment
20. Annecy Will Host Genndy Tartakovsky, Masaaki Yuasa, ‘Zootopia’ Directors, Richard Williams

Annecy is taking over San Diego Comic-Con as the place for Hollywood to preview its major projects.

0 Comments on Annecy Will Host Genndy Tartakovsky, Masaaki Yuasa, ‘Zootopia’ Directors, Richard Williams as of 1/1/1900
Add a Comment
21. stratford-upon-avon and space suits

This weekend, the Reeve & McIntyre Roadshow hit the home of England's greatest playwright at Stratford-upon-Avon Literary Festival! (It's also where Shakespeare lived...)

Here I am, back in the blue wig and flight cap for Cakes in Space shenanigans with the festival's director Annie Ashworth and one of our top-level space cadets from Oxford University Press, Elaine McQuade.

These kinds of events are usually pleasant, but working together as a team on books with Reeve makes them loads of fun. We were pleased to see that while we were busy at the festival, The Guardian ran an article on co-author teams, with a good emphasis on illustration and comics:

And Reeve and I got a mention, hurrah! Thanks, Imogen Russell Williams!

Speaking of all things space-themed on May the Fourth (be with you), Philip's just written a blog on Star Wars and why it's been such a big influence on his work:

(And if you're looking for more good Star Wars reading material, check out these models cut from single sheets of paper.)

But back to Stratford Lit Fest! One of the best things about a festival is when we hear afterward how people in the audience have been inspired to go away and make their own drawings and stories. Philip and I led them in drawing Pilbeam the robot and a killer cake, and a girl named Erin went away and started her own Pilbeam-inspired comic! Yay! I hope she keeps going with it. (Thanks to @KathrynEMarsh for tweeting it.)

While we were in town, Philip could feel the bard looking down over not one, but both of his shoulders:

And he signed copies of the Uncorrected Proof edition of his new book, RAILHEAD, which is coming out about the same time this September as our Pugs of the Frozen North book.

One of the fun things about a festival is getting to meet other authors. (In fact, it's how I met Philip, at the Edinburgh book fest.) Here's Philip getting served his asparagus starter on a plank, with a bit of fake grass, next to Elaine and Professor David Crystal.

We got to meet David, his wife/manager Hilary and their actor/writer son Ben Crystal, who worked with his dad to create an Illustrated Shakespeare Dictionary for young teenagers.

Other fab people we saw at the festival: Nick Butterworth! I love Nick's work and studied it quite a lot when I first started out. And funnily enough, he looks so much like his characters, including Percy the Park Keeper:

Here are Ashley Harrold and Philip swapping books in the Green Room:

Ashley, Steven Lenton and Tracey Corderoy all came to our Cakes in Space event (thanks so much!) but I didn't manage to snap a picture of Steve before he had to run and catch his train. But here's his fab co-author Tracey, with some of their charaters:

A quick hello with Chris Riddell:

And somehow I entirely missed seeing the marvelous Neill Cameron, but here's a photo tweeted by the festival. (Hope to catch you next time, Neill!!) He's come straight from taking part in the Phoenix Fest in Oxford, which sounded amazing. (Check out some of the tweets from that festival here!)

Big thanks to Annie and her team which made the festival run so smoothly! I hope lots of people went away inspired.

And I went back home to Stuart, and we spent a day in Kent visiting the bluebells and eating wild garlic. (Whiffy!)

I promise no bluebells were harmed in the making of this photo.

Add a Comment
22. Festival Call for Entries: Festival by Pixelatl, Corfu, New Chitose Airport Festival

Three new calls for entries from Cuernavaca, Mexico; Hokkaido, Japan; and Corfu, Greece.

0 Comments on Festival Call for Entries: Festival by Pixelatl, Corfu, New Chitose Airport Festival as of 1/1/1900
Add a Comment
23. Festival Report: Pictoplasma 2015, Where Character Is King

Cartoon Brew's European correspondent reports from an art event that emphasizes characters above all else. But is that a good thing?

0 Comments on Festival Report: Pictoplasma 2015, Where Character Is King as of 1/1/1900
Add a Comment
24. South African Artists Are Drawing Attention With ‘Kariba’ Proof-of-Concept Trailer

A small team of Cape Town-based artists are set to pitch their feature film at Annecy.

0 Comments on South African Artists Are Drawing Attention With ‘Kariba’ Proof-of-Concept Trailer as of 5/14/2015 6:59:00 PM
Add a Comment
25. dinosaur police: hay festival 2015

I had my first Dinosaur Police event yesterday, at the Hay Festival in Wales! And I got to wear my brand-new dinosaur-inspired hat! My sculptor friend, Eddie Smith created it (the same guy who helped me build the giant Seawig and talking cake hat), and my local tailor, Esther Marfo, made the dress. (Oh, and I made the book!)

This photo's by Jay Williams for Telegraph Books, and I was awfully excited to be included in the gallery between Pam Ayres and Virginia McKenna, both of whom I got to meet in the Green Room. Here's a doodle of my awesome Scholastic UK publicist, Dave Sanger, bravely helping me on stage to lead the audience in a very rousing rendition of the Dinosaur Police SONG. It might not have been the most tuneful number on the day, but we all sang it with great gusto. (Thanks, Philip Reeve, for writing the lyrics, and Sarah Reeve, for teaching me some ace uke chords to play with it!)

Here's Dave, sheltering from the rain under the umbrella of my enormous hat. Oh... and I have some exciting news about David!

Not only is he a fab publicist, but he's signed a book deal with Quercus for a book for adults, All Their Minds in Tandem, coming out next spring. Yay, Dave! I can't wait to read it.

So for our event, we did some drawing, and some roaring, comics, and general mucking about.

I showed everyone my way of drawing Trevor the T-Rex, and here's one of the drawings from a girl in the audience named Grace. We discussed various possible dinosaur professions, and this one's a dinosaur astronaut. (Here are some guides on my website to drawing dinosaurs, if you want to have a try.)

And it wasn't just people in Wales drawing dinosaurs; here's a picture tweeted in from South America of Inspector Sarah Tops at the same time by Mercedes Ortiz!

And then I got to sign and draw in lots of books. Thanks so much, everyone who came along! (Photo tweeted by Steph Roundsmith at @kidsrwreview.)

Big thanks to the other Sarah, who managed our event, and Glyn Morgan (@GR_Morgan), who was working another event but made me feel very famous by pulling me aside for a photo to tweet.

Actually, a lot of us had fun with the hat. Here are authors Ed Vere, Holly Smale and Tom Moorhouse.

I only had time to go to one event, so I went to see Holly give a talk with Megan Farr and Arabella Weir. Holly and Arabella have both written stories about teenage girls very much like they were as teenagers, and it was kind of funny because I think it they'd met each other as teenagers, they would have loathed each other. Since they're both grown-ups now, they can talk about these things in a friendly sort of way, but I think the audience could still feel the undercurrent of their semi-fictional teenage selves at war. (Which made everything way more interesting than if they'd been very similar.)

The most surprising question actually came from a child in the audience, who said: "You're both obviously very intelligent women. So why are you writing books for children?" (Cue a big intake of breath from several people up front and in the audience who make books for children.) Holly and Arabella answered it well, saying that it can be even harder to write for children, because children don't let writers hide behind unnecessary literary nonsense: either a story works for them, or it doesn't. In fact, Holly didn't even set out to write for children. She made the Geek Girl protagonist 15 years old, and that's what made the editor decide it was a children's book. Both Arabella and Holly said they never dumb down allusions and jokes because they're writing for kids, and Holly pointed to Shakespeare references in her stories.

Both writers said it's harder to make people laugh than cry, which I very much agree with. It reminded me of a line tweeted recently by Ewa SR:

Being funny doesn't mean being dizzy or less talented, on the contrary, it takes more skill.

Another thing that takes a whole lot of skill is moderating talks. Big cheers to people who moderated MANY talks, including Daniel Hahn (who was compere for 18 talks during the festival!) and the Telegraph Book's Martin Chilton, who also had to read a whole lot of books and ask a lot of good questions. Here's Martin, looking lovely in the dino hat. (And yes, he DID suddenly sprout a lavish blond fringe.)

I was sad to miss illustrator Jamie Littler's event with Danny Wallace, but I hear it was a storming success. (Here he is, with the newspaper rose we were all given.)

One of the hardest things about this year has been not having enough time to catch up with friends. And this festival was wonderful for that. On the first morning, I came out of my bedroom at George House to find my great friend, writer Moira Young, also coming downstairs to breakfast. Yay! Here's Moira, with wonderful Shirley Smith, who lives in the house and turns it into a guesthouse once a year, just for the festival. I stayed with her in 2012 and was thrilled to be back.

And it was great to catch up with Moira and her architect husband Paul. Another big treat was getting to have a girly slumber party with Holly Smale, when she found she wouldn't be able to catch the last train home. After dinner, we stayed up WAY too late chatting in the pink bedroom, in our little twin beds, then came back together on the train. Good times.

And the other people who made it a fun visit was the group of Norwegians at the festival - a 'noggin' of Norwegians as I've decided they're called - and they took me out to dinner on the first night: Helga and John Rullestad (who hosted me in Norway for the SILK Festival) and their good friend Odd Henning Johannessen. (Thanks so much, Norwegians!)

Thanks so much to Mary Beard and Heather Salisbury at Hay Festival for inviting and looking after me, Shirley for putting me up, Dave for being my glamorous dinosaur assistant, the team at the Hay Festival bookshop, Dave and Harriet Bayly for the second night's dinner, drivers Darren and Mark, Sarah, the stewards and everyone who made the festival run so smoothly and be so much fun. And big thanks to Eddie and Esther for all the costume help!

Add a Comment

View Next 25 Posts