|Proposed cover for my flap book of first English words for Bayard, France|
Barely landed from a wonderfully inspiring and long-saved up for trip to New York than I was off doing workshops with budding authors and illustrators under 10 years old, at the Chelsea Young Writers Group.
Then to talks for World Book Week at the brand new Artizan Street Library in the City, back near my home ground of East London. What wonderfully attentive kids!
So many children here, in East as well as West London, are recent immigrants. I can relate to them. I have an early memory of being in a French playground surrounded by children staring at me (at best looking concerned) because I couldn't understand them. I think it's that feeling of being different, estranged, that made me want to come up with a book specfically about recognizing words through pictures. And a lift-the-flap book that's fun to play with, rather than a manual. I want the furry family of whatdyoucallems to be welcoming for any kid anywhere. Can't wait to see the final maquette for this book when I go to the Bologna Book Fair in less than 2 weeks!