IPG Children's Publisher of the Year

Win copies of of our August books!

Posted by Tom on Jul 30, 2014

It’s time for our monthly books giveaway! If you’re a resident of the UK or Ireland, you can win any of our new August books simply by subscribing to our Books Newsletter and sending us an email with the book you’d like to win. Here’s what’s up for grabs…

We’ll be publishing the phenomenal Playbook Castle, illustrated by Britta Teckentrup with truly brilliant paper engineering by Corina Fletcher – an ingenious novelty package comprising a pop-up storybook, which then unfolds and transforms into a 3D playmat, with cut-out cardboard pieces for hours of fun!

You can win Axel Scheffler’s Flip Flap Safari – the fantastic follow-up to last year’s Axel Scheffler’s Flip Flap Farm. With its sturdy, split pages and spiral binding, 121 possible combinations, silly names and animal noises to make you giggle, this hilarious rhyming flip-flap book in a fun format is perfect for pre-schoolers. Little readers will adore flipping Axel Scheffler’s animals again and again to see what crazy creatures they can create – and to find out what strange noises they make too!

Use Your Imagination by Nicola O’Byrne is up for grabs – the brilliant new picture book from the illustrator of the Waterstones Children’s Book Prize-winning Open Very Carefully. Rabbit is bored, but luckily Wolf has the perfect solution. “Why not write a story?” he suggests. “I am a librarian, you know.” And so Wolf teaches Rabbit to use his imagination to create an exciting story. Rabbit is DESPERATE to know what happens, when it suddenly becomes clear that Wolf is very, very hungry… Here’s a look inside the book:

You could win My School Musical and other Punishments, the third HILARIOUS novel by Catherine Wilkins, author of My Best Friend and other Enemies and My Brilliant Life and other Disasters. When Jessica gets roped into the school play she finds herself strangely allied with arch-enemy Amelia when her best friend Natalie becomes crazed with stardom. Meanwhile, Jessica’s dad is concerned at plans to build a new road through nearby parkland and is now living up a tree. So far, so normal! Here’s a look inside:

And finally, you could win The Palomino Pony Rides Out by Olivia Tuffin, the second volume in this fantastic new series that’s absolutely PERFECT for pony-mad 9+ year olds – an exciting sequence of soon-to-be-classic pony books, shot through with action, adventure, and a genuine love of horses. Here’s a look inside:

To win any of these books, all you have to do is subscribe to our books newsletter (if you’ve already subscribed you’re still eligible for this competition) and send an email to tom@nosycrow.com with “Newsletter competition” in the subject heading and the title of the book you’d like to win in the body of your email. So have a good think about which book you’d like to win (we can only accept one entry per person), and good luck – we’ll pick the winners at random next week.

Have you heard about our upcoming children’s publishing conference? Early Bird tickets are available now.

The Bride Who Loved School Dinners

Posted by Kirsty on Jul 29, 2014

They’re an old married couple of three weeks now but on 3rd July, Pamela Butchart, author of Baby Aliens Got My Teacher!, married her boyfriend, Andrew Cunningham, in a beautiful old byre in Fife. By coincidence, and as something of a very good sign for both ventures, Pamela’s second book with Nosy Crow, The Spy Who Loved School Dinners, was published on the same day. And best of all (for me) is that I was lucky enough to be invited to the wedding.

Both Pamela and Andrew are teachers, and Pamela’s books are all about the crazy things that happen at primary school, so it could be said that the wedding had a natural theme. The invitation threatened detention for those not RSVPing in a timely fashion, and on the morning of the wedding, I caught a school bus from Dundee along the amazing coastline to St Andrews. It was a lovely service in a lovely place, and I felt very honoured to be there.

Sadly, Pamela and Andy’s cats, Carlos and Bear, couldn’t make it in person, but they made it in standee.

There were lots of firsts on the day. It’s not unusual for people, when they find out what I do, to admit to having a children’s book in them, but it’s never been a vicar who’s just officiated at a wedding before. I’ve never been offered what I thought was a cup of camomile tea only to discover it was in fact Prosecco, and I’ve never been more delighted. And I’ve never found myself sat in the back of a bridal car with the bride and groom (though not in the middle, that would have been intrusive) whizzing off to a bookshop in St Andrews, as the bride takes half an hour out from her wedding to go and sign copies of her new book.

Having newly weds sweep through their door was a first for J & G Innes, and I don’t think the small girl who was busily drawing in a corner has ever been handed a bridal bouquet and asked to hold it for a minute. And it was a really-very-lovely-to-witness first for Andy, when Pamela showed him the dedication and illustration printed in the front of the THE SPY WHO LOVED SCHOOL DINNERS, something that she had kept a very stressful secret since the advance copies came through.

I’m also fairly certain that while it might have been the first time that Andy became a human signing table, it won’t be the last.

Back at the wedding, (school) dinner was served. And it was delicious (unlike the shepherd’s pie so beloved by the ‘spy’ in Pamela’s book).

Thank you, Mr and Mrs Cunningham, for inviting me to your wedding and I hope your photographer took better pictures. I had a lovely time, and we all send our love and best wishes for the future (and for future books).

Have you heard about our upcoming children’s publishing conference? Early Bird tickets are available now.

Nosy Crow is shortlisted for the Nectar Small Business of the Year Award

Posted by Kate on Jul 28, 2014

I don’t do it often.

But when I do, it usually happens late at night. Sometimes early in the morning.

I decide to do a quick internet search for free-to-enter. awards that Nosy Crow might be eligible to enter. Our track-record on award-winning has been remarkably good… but all that does is work up our appetite for more.

Besides, I’ve never filled out an entry form for an award without learning or thinking something new about Nosy Crow, particularly about how someone, or an organisation, outside the business might think about ourselves: filling in an entry form is an exercise in trying “to see oursels as others see us”, to quote Robert Burns.

Anyway, what tends to happen when I find an award for which we’re eligible is either that I realise that it is a day or two to the deadline for entries and I scrabble about to put an entry together, or that I see that the deadline is months off… and so promptly forget about it, only to kick myself when I do another search and realise that I have missed the deadline date. There must be a better way than this (Google calendar?), but so far I have not found it.

The Nectar Small Business Awards happily fell into the first category, and the deadline was very close, and, so, as usual, I had to pull something together in real haste. But – houpla and kazam! – on Friday evening we were told that we were shortlisted for the Small Business Of The Year Award.

And while we welcome any industry-specific prize or shortlisting going, I think it’s great for us to be flying the flag for independent publishing, and for book businesses in general, by being shortlisted, or winning prizes, in competitions against other kinds of business. This was one of the things that made winning a Stationers’ Company award recently so great.

The announcement about the Nectar shortlisting is here. If we win, I might get to meet Karren Brady. And we’d get cash and Nectar points.

Our fingers are firmly crossed.

Have you heard about our upcoming children’s publishing conference? Early Bird tickets are available now.