Andrew Sanders – FCBG Children’s Book Award Nominee
Today is a big day for me.
It’s the day when I can officially say that I’m not an idiot with crayons sat in my bedroom. I’m not just some muppet who doesn’t know when to quit. I’m not just a whimsey merchant, pedalling picture-booky nonsense to all and sundry.
In fact, it turns out that sundry quite likes my latest picture book.
Because today, Where Has All the Cake Gone? (Illustrated by Aysha Awwad and published by Pan Macmillan) was shortlisted for the Federation of Children’s Book Groups Children’s Book Award. For kids book writers, this is basically like climbing Everest. In heels. With a badger on your back. Whilst performing CPR on a Pacific Salmon.* Nobody ever manages this. Well, at least, not real people. I’m up against mega authors like Rob Biddulph – a man who has a proper job working for The Guardian, and spends his time getting letters from the Queen and drawing and stuff. I’ve heard he can fly over tree-tops and shoot laser beams out of his belly button and everything.
By contrast, I’ve just taken my dog to the vets to have the glands in his bum squeezed.**
This is probably the biggest milestone of my career to date – and I’m very lucky to have a wonderfully supportive family that have helped me every step of the way. I’m absolutely elated that the book Aysha and I created has been recognised as a little bit awesome. I’ve had the most amazing support from my agency over the last 14 years, from the brilliant Hilary Delamere, plus Jess Hare and also over the years, Holly Tonks and Alice Sutherland-Hawes. I’ve massively enjoyed working with Hannah and Grace at Macmillan to turn this book into a reality, and I honestly, just feel like Leonardo Di Caprio in Titanic when he stands on the front of the ship and shouts about being King of the World.
I’d also like to say a big thank you to everyone that has bought a copy of my books, purchased one of my artworks, or even just offered me support and encouragement over the last 37 years.
I understand there’s going to be some way for kids to vote for which book they like the most in this Award – so, as soon as I find out exactly what that it, I’ll be delighted to share that with you, and if you want to register your vote for Where Has All the Cake Gone?, then watch this space, and I’ll let you know if how and where you can do your bit to try and help me beat Rob Biddulph and his magic bellybutton.
Thank you again for all of you for your support. It means the world.
*Don’t get me started on Atlantic Salmon. Those things are easy to keep alive.
** This was not made up for comic effect – I have to go and pick up a bemused, comatose dog in about half an hour.