surrey libraries children’s book festival

First, a quick announcement! Remember that amazing weekly comics magazine that got me going with Vern and Lettuce, The DFC? Well, it’s coming back! Renamed The Phoenix, we’re getting back some of our fab editorial staff, lots of the original comics creators, and a whole bunch more!

Since my sister, Mary McIntyre, lives so far away, today was the first time she’s ever seen me do an event. Here’s a pen sketch I made of her on the train-ride out to Surrey. I’m having to come to terms with the fact that whenever I draw someone in my family, it never comes out looking much like them. And the train went over a bump just as I was drawing her nose.

At Ewell Library, Mary even helped me with my Comics Jam workshop!

Here’s the quick jam session we did while the kids were drawing their comics:

The kids in the first comics session made me very happy with this character we came up with together, the Mad Scientist Heffalump.

Sometimes unexpected things happen at events. This time I got to hold an owl! A very large owl!

The library atrium had an amazing array of live birds of prey, gathered for a medieval spring fayre. The owl was very friendly, I saw this man on the left giving him lots of kisses (but I decided not to be quite that forward with it). The lady in the other picture looked particularly fetching in her wimple.

Here’s the fab team who helped me run the comics workshop at Ewell Library: Pat, Joan and Rosemary. Thanks, ladies!

I didn’t give the comics kids much time to design their characters, but I very much liked the look of this Police Mouse with rocket boots.

After a tasty gastropub lunch with Rosemary, she took us down the road to Stoneleigh Library, where we led a packed-out Monster Making session. Before we even got going, one girl drew this monster, which I totally loved and may at some point be tempted to steal for a story.

Lots of fabulous monsters; I gave the kids the choice of drawing on plain paper or using my Make-your-own-Monster sheets.

This guy got nicely side-tracked drawing a snail comic at the Monster workshop. Love that weeping snail on a fork.

They’re a bit hard to make out from the photos, but here are a couple of the comics jams from Ewell Library. Thanks to everyone who came, that was a lot of fun! My next two kids’ events are at the Oundle Festival and Oxford Lit Fest, do book if you want to come along! (Event info here on my website.)

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