Wednesday, 30 May 2012


I'm just finishing off the final bits of Tom Gates GENIUS IDEAS (mostly). So am trying not to get too distracted with other stuff. Which is VERY easy to do.(Especially when the suns out.)
But LOADS has been happening.

I went to FOYLES in the MASSIVE shopping centre WESTFIELD last Thursday 29th May (for the first time) and did two events with children from schools who were part of a special reading scheme set up with the MAYOR OF NEWHAM Sir Robin Wales.He was fantastic. Especially when he asked the kids if they liked his "Bling".

Sir Robin Wales Mayor of Newham. Check out the kid in the glasses
who looks delighted at being FORCED to hold a Tom Gates book.
Foyles had donated Tom Gates Excellent Excuses (mostly) to all the children in the scheme and volunteers from WESTFIELD shops (Waitrose/John Lewis and others) have been going into schools to read with the children.
First sighting of

GREEK FOOD = holiday.

 Catherine (publicity queen) took me to a Greek restaurant - where I could see the OLYMPIC STADIUM in the distance. I got very excited.

We've got tickets to see...drum roll..... Synchronised swimming
AND woman's Volleyball. We watched the test event beach volleyball last year.(Which my husband enjoyed.) 

Then Friday I headed off to OXFORD BOOKFEAST - to the PITT RIVERS
Museum of Natural History. The glass Victorian building had hit 90 degrees and was like an oven. On an NON scorching day it's a fantastic place to visit, full of amazing exhibits, creatures, skeletons even shrunken heads! AND...David Attenborough was there filming.It was like a royal visit.
Also I bumped into the wonderful Michael Rosen who was funny, charming as ever always full of very good advice for me.  

TEAM Bookfeast! The fabulous organizers.

My school event was probably the LOUDEST I've ever done! I had loads of Tom Gates FANS in the audience who had all read the book
and knew all the characters.It was GREAT! I had a really good time
VERY keen children kept me WELL busy.
and it was the first time I'd used a VISUALIZER too. I showed the children my specially painted Tom Gates nails which went down well.
THANK YOU TO EVERYONE who worked so hard organising BOOKFEAST along with Blackwells bookshop who we kept busy!

Did and interview with Oxford Radio and THIS MUG was on the desk in the office. I took it as a sign.

Terrifying FEET of a T-Rex


Add your own caption.....


OK- here's the thing. It IS a wonderful    Hotel, don't get me wrong. Very posh and    all that. But it WAS a prison and rather than hide that fact, they decided to roll with it. Which try as I might, I found it all a bit odd.

The INSIDE of the doors are complete with dents.

I woke up at 4am and this is what I saw as I'd forgotten to close the top window with the shutters.... 

My prison cell view at night.

Catherine being cheerful.

Prison doors.

The DENTS in the doors

Saturday I was at the OXFORD Pegasus Theatre which is a lovely space.I drew the oddest monster I think EVER. With a dogs body and a fish head. Met SO many lovely people too. And one little girl (Grace) turned up with a letter I'd written to her to show me! This week I've had emails from Australia and New Zealand.
So Tom Gates is travelling well.

Then home to watch (and tweet about) EUROVISION. Which was fun.
but not for poor old Englebert.
Sunday we met up with friends for a trip to the beach. 

Lily dancing at eurovison.

I SWAM in the SEA in the morning.It was BALTIC and there was a man coming out of the sea wearing a WET SUIT.So I only have myself to blame. 
More friends came round for a BBQ later. Harry (with arms on head) writes the BRILLIANTLY funny Clare In The Community which appears in the Guardian as a cartoon and on radio four (with Sally Phillips.)
 It was Geri's (next to Mark) birthday on Tuesday. Happy Birthday Geri!I painted their daughter Mini with Tom Gates toe nails. Mini had a look round my shed too (which was a mess) as she's keen on the books, so it's like a sneak preview for her.
Penny Dann is also a wonderful illustrator-(next to Harry.) There are SO many illustrators in Brighton. 
Fabulous friends for BBQ.
We did eat despite there just being
bottles on the table.

very early (9am). Which I'm really looking forward to.

My friend Sue Hendra is there this Saturday with her marvellous books Barry The Fish With Fingers and Wanda the Alien.
(She wrote DAVE which I Illustrated.)
Told you there was a lot on.

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