Thursday, 3 July 2014

Doggy Auditions for Shifty McGifty & Slippery Sam 2!

It's time to get going on the artwork for Shifty 2 - we are over the yawning moon that there is going to be a fantastic, funny, frosting-filled sequel to our first 'crime to cupcakes' picture book.

What will happen?  Is the Goody Dog cafe doing well?  Are Shifty and Sam managing to steer clear from naughtiness......?

All these questions plus much MUCH more will be revealed next summer when book 2 publishes...

One thing is for certain - the sequel has lots and LOTS of DOGS in it and we need the cheekiest, cutest, most character-filled pooches we can find to feature in the next book...

SO, if you would like to 'audition your dog' for a cameo in Shifty 2 then please send in photos or drawings of your beloved hound - from Chihuahuas to Chau Chaus and everything in-between please!

Here is some inspiration - my friend Lisa's pooch Minnie the Sausage! Doesn't she look resplendent in her poyl necklace!

And here is my little woofer Holly - who appeared in book one - can you spot her...;

Please Tweet or Facebook a photo of your dog to @2dscrumptious or Steven Lenton and we will start the selection process in August - get snapping and your dog could feature in the cake-iest, bake-iest book ever!

Tuesday, 3 June 2014

Shifty & Sam at The Hay Festival 2014!

Shifty, Sam, myself and Tracey are all still in a Hay-riffic stupor after a wonderful time at this years Hay Festival.

Introducing our cheeky Robber Dogs!  Note Tracey's handmade bunting!

We were honoured to be invited onto The Starlight Stage to share Shifty and Sam's story with an eager sell-out audience, who laughed, sang, danced and played games, helping us to make a truly memorable occasion for all involved.

Tracey and I arrived a day before our event and enjoyed David Melling's Hugless Douglas event and were then treated to comps for Letters of Note: Letters Live starring, amongst others, Chris Evans and Benedict Cumberbatch (who I got chance to say a quick hello to whilst taking a photo for a friends daughter!)

The icing on the cake of our first day was the amazing spread that Kate and Adrian from our publisher Nosy Crow laid on for, not only us, but also author Helen Peters, her family and *trumpet blast* Judy Blume, yes THE Judy Blume, in their beautiful home in Hereford.  What an honour it was to be chin-wagging with writing royalty. Everyone was so lovely, witty, and by the end of the evening, full of delicious food and wine - thank you again Kate and Adrian!

Around the Nosy Crow table - I was lucky enough to be sitting next to Judy!

Then our big day arrived and it was on with the show (after nearly not making it at all due to a flat battery!) we waited in the Green Room where numerous celebrities, authors and illustrators were tucking into cake, tea and chat - then we were called - it was time to prepare The Starlight Stage - GULP!

This was my first ever time at Hay, so to be in the middle of it all was an invasion on the senses - and the nerves!

Thankfully Tracey - Queen of Bunting wasted no time in pinning up metres of the stuff - all handmade and suitably Shifty-esque!  The rest of our props were placed to perfection and after a quick sound check (Britney mics a go-go!) the 250 strong queue started to pile in...

Then it was on with the show.  Tracey and I introduced our characters - just WHERE were Shifty and Sam hiding?  A- ha!  In the SWAG bag of course - and, aided by the children we settled the robber dogs down for a telling of their story.

As this was Hay, we knew we had to pull out all the stops and so we had prepared some extra special treats for this show.  First of which was the premiere appearance of Duchess the pink poodle - who delivered her one line ("How LOVELY!") from the book with the professionalism and projection of a young Dame Judi (with a pink wig on.)

Duchess the Poodle - RADA trained don't you know...

Next it was time for the second exclusive part of this show 'The Robber Dog Song! - the first verse of which goes like so;


We showed the audience all the actions and in no time children from 4 to 74 were shining their torch and grabbing their bag!

Bouncing our bouncy spiders and singing the Robber Dog Song!

I then did a 'How to draw Slippery Sam' masterclass - and wow, the children's drawings were SUPERB!

Yes I AM wearing dog ears while I draw Slippery Sam.
A wonderful drawing by Rishi!

And a CORKER from Ela-Gwennon!

The most fun part of the show was the audience participation extravaganza 'Heads and Tails' game - where children and parents were encouraged to raise their hands, come on stage with us and race each other to dress up as dogs as quickly as possible - such fun!  I was in charge of Team Shifty with one side of Starlight chanting 'SHI-FTY, SHI-FTY!', while Tracey's Team Sam 'SAM - WOO! SAM - WOO!' won the hilarious contest.

Here we are explaining the 'Heads and Tails' game!

Everyone who took part in the game won a bespoke Chefs hat - modelled here by possibly the cheekiest little chap we have ever met!

Then after another sing-a-long-a-Shifty and all the children bouncing their (all handmade by Tracey!) bouncy spiders, our 45 minutes was up and it was on to the book shop for our book signing - and wow what a queue!  It was so long I missed two trains back home to Bath, but gosh, was it worth it.

Thank you to all at Hay for organising such a fantastic festival and for helping us to create a fun, interactive show that couldn't have gone better - PHEW!

The response to our show was overwhelming and we even got a mention on BBC Radio 6 Music and the BBC BLOG.

Keep up-to-date with all upcoming events and news on Shifty McGifty & Slippery Sam 2 at the Nosy Crow website!

See you at our next event! 

And thank you to Tracey for being there - you are one in a million xxx

Wednesday, 7 May 2014

Happy 1st Birthday Shifty McGifty and Slippery Sam!

We can't believe it's been a year since Shifty & Sam were published!

The story of crime to cupcakes has really captured the imaginations of children and parents worldwide and the cheeky robber dogs, Tracey and myself are over the yawning moon that the book is still selling like hot cross buns!


Over the past year there have been events galore and we are continuing to tour around the UK with more wonderful events coming up at the Hoo, Hay, Edinburgh and Bath literary festivals!

Thank you to everybody who has grown to love Shifty and Sam over the past 12 months and get ready for more sequel news coming soon...!

Sunday, 6 April 2014

Shifty & Sam steal hearts at the Cambridge Literature Festival!

Tracey Corderoy, Shifty, Sam and myself have had a wondrous weekend at the Cambridge Literature Festival!

We were wined and dined and lucky enough to stay at the beautiful Corpus Cristi College - one of the many famous colleges steeped in history and elegance - and they also do a mean full english breakfast!

The magnificent Corpus Cristi college - our home for the weekend
Shifty & Sam couldn't decide what to wear for the event...

…but they opted for black and white stripes!

As ever they were rather tempted to be naughty dogs…
…but they stayed on the right side of the law!
Me, the lads and Tracey post-breakfast

…which was taken in a Hogwarts-esque dining hall!

Then it was on with the event! Tracey read the story to our fantastic audience ...

...then we made bouncy spiders,

…drew some Slippery Sams...
...of which there were some FANTASTIC end results - thank you Barnaby for this cracker!

…and played a great game of 'Oh no! Where did it go?!

We even met Sarah McIntyre and Philip Reeve - creators of 'Oliver and the Seawigs!'

We all had a fantastic time - the Cambridge Festival was a huge success and thank you to all the organisers, especially Sabine Edwards for making us all feel so warmly welcomed.

And now after a short rest, it's on with Shifty McGifty and Slippery Sam……the sequel!

Tuesday, 17 December 2013

Exciting Bookaboo giveaway!

To celebrate the Bookaboo Shifty McGifty & Slippery Sam episode airing on 27th December on ITV1 and CITV how about a little competition!

The cheeky robber dogs will have trouble sleeping TWO NIGHTS now as firstly they are overly excited about Christmas Day - they are hoping to get some lovely presents from their friends and neighbours (Sam is keeping his paws crossed for the new Mary Berry autobiography) and then they are MOST excited about their story being read by Coronation Streets very own Steve McDonald (played by Simon Gregson) at 6.50am on the morning of the 27th!  Here is Simon reading the book to Bookaboo - CUTE!

To celebrate this we are giving away an exclusive tote bag, a signed, dedicated hardback and a one-off sketch of Shifty & Sam with Bookaboo himself!

To enter the competition all you have to do is email with your funniest Christmas joke - the funniest one will win all three prizes, with one runner-up winning a tote bag - good luck - we look forward to hearing your hilarious festive gags!

We will be choosing the lucky winner on Christmas Eve and the winner will be announced shortly after the show is aired on the 27th.

The programme will be available to watch on ITV player after the show and is also repeated on the 29th December at 7.25am.

For more news on Bookaboo make sure you follow him on Twitter @bookaboolucy !

Friday, 6 December 2013

How to make Shifty & Sam Christmas Decorations!

Fancy making cheekily charming Shifty McGifty and Slippery Sam Christmas Decorations to hang on your Christmas Tree?  Why not!  Here is what the finished Shifty looks like;

And here is little Sam;

Here are both of them just you know, hanging around!

And here are the A4 printouts to set you on your way-hey!

Print onto a thin card if you can for the best result :)

I'd love to see some photos of your festive Shifty's on our Twitter feed @2dscrumptious

Saturday, 19 October 2013

Shifty & Sam at the Oxfordshire Bake Off!

The cheeky robber dogs and I have had a wonderful few weeks meeting lots of children, parents, teachers and students at various events - we are just going through all our snaps now and are about to blog some of the events, starting with...

The Oxfordshire Bake Off!  Here the boys and I read our story to lots of children, drew lots of Slippery Sam's, made some spiders (just like the one hidden on every page of the book!) and signed lots of books - all for two wonderful charities.

Here are the parts of the spiders all waiting to be stuck together to make a spoooooky spider!

The children drew some terrific Slippery Sams and Spiders.  Spiders are super easy to draw and act as a great 'warm up drawing' to loosen up their drawing skills and imaginations!