CELEBRATIONS February 2022


 With the turn of a page and the smell of fresh ink and paper, we venture into a month of words, pictures and creativity. Join B B Taylor as she brings good news for the month of February with our latest Celebrations.

New Releases 

Eva Wong Nava has definitely got reason to celebrate this month as The House of Little Sisters was released on 22 February, 2022 by Penguin Random House. This YA historical fiction novel, is a tautly-paced coming-of-age story with an all-Asian cast; a supernatural exposé of a past system that still has a grip on contemporary society.

Cover of The House of Little Sisters

Author Rashmi Sirdeshpande and illustrator Adam Hayes have teamed up with publisher Hachette Children's Group to bring you one of this years World Book Day books – Think like a Boss. Ever thought making money was just for adults? Or that business was boring? And that inventing stuff was only for super clever people? Think again. Though this book may be small, it’s bursting with big ideas for budding entrepreneurs. From understanding money and looking after it, to the nuts and bolts of setting up a business, making your big ideas a reality and using your cash for good.

Cover of Think Like A Boss

Lucy van Smit's A Writer’s Journal Workbook (Writers & Artists/Bloomsbury) is aimed at emerging writers and published authors to re-wild creativity and empower writing craft. Despite the COVID Grinch and no book launch, A Writer’s Journal Workbook had so much support and anticipation from SCBWI and fellow writers, that it had fantastic rankings and continuing readers' love. So far, the only "in person" celebration has been with SCBWI’s Louise Roberts and Annette Caseley at The British Library! Workshops on the workbook are in the pipeline. (USA publication date is April.) Until the end of March, Bloomsbury is offering SCBWI writers a 25% discount. (Keep your eyes peeled to your inboxes to find out more!)

Louise Roberts and Annette Caseley

Rebecca Colby is running for joy this month as her newest early reader title, The Ninjabread Man, is released on 28 February with Maverick Books. The Ninjabread Man runs, runs, runs as fast as he can, and with his ninja skills can anyone possibly catch him?

Cover of The Ninjabread Man

Illustrator and writer David Hutchison has had a busy few months with new releases and good news, earlier this month one of his illustrations was used by Tita Berredo for a series of articles on diversity in Words & Pictures. His new releases include Reed, Seedling and Fèis ann am Fànas (Gig Across The Galaxy) – Gaelic translation by Clyde Bonnie.

David Hutchinson

Coming Soon 

Emma Finlayson-Palmer grooved into February with some good news with the cover reveal of her upcoming book Dance Magic! Designed by Becky Chilcott and illustrated by Heidi Cannon, it will be published by UCLan Publishing on 7 July 2022. Autumn Moonbeam loves gymnastics and dance so when Sparkledale Dance Academy have try-outs for their competitive dance team, Black Cats, she thinks it’s the most broom-tastic opportunity ever! Just one problem, Autumn is nervous and worries she won’t make it onto the team. 

Cover of Dance Magic!

Annemarie Anang has some some awesome news to share! Her debut picture book cover was revealed a few weeks ago (26 Jan)! It’s called I AM NEFERTITI and is being published by Five Quills on 2 June, and our very own SCBWI Natascha Biebow edited it! It’s wonderfully illustrated by Natelle Quek, who is also a SCBWI member! When Nefertiti plays the drums, the band comes together as one. “I am Nefertiti” she chants proudly. But when her new music teacher shortens her name to ‘Nef’ something strange happens… A heartwarming, joyous, empowering story of identity and belonging.


New member Elisabeth Kelly has signed a deal with StairWell Books in York for them to publish her first Chapter Book – Ivy Elf's Magical Mission. We can't wait to hear more!

Illustration from Ivy Elf's Magical Mission

Keep tuning in here for all the upcoming news of book deals, new releases and exciting new opportunities!


Have you got a new agent? Don't be shy. Let us know so we can celebrate with you too!


We would like to say a huge congratulations to all of the creatives who have just graduated from Bath Spa University Masters in Writing for Young People. These guys completed their Masters throughout COVID and are eagerly awaiting the launch of their Anthology entitled #Unlocked. To check out their work and hear about their experiences, go to https://www.mawfypanthology.com/

The MAWFYP 2021 creatives

Have you won, or been nominated for an award? Don't be shy, we want to celebrate with you!

Good News 

Yasmin Hanif has been working on a fantastic project with Raisah Ahmed and Safina Mazhar. They have been working hard with St. Albert's Primary and have published 3 volumes of books written and developed by the pupils and writers, alongside a range of talented professional artists. The project, called We Can Be Heroes, was to encourage and empower young pupils (predominantly from an ethnic minority background) to write, see themselves in writing and share their experiences. This social enterprise model won the Social Enterprise Academy’s Glasgow Dragon’s Den in 2020/21 and went on to win a National Social Enterprise Champion Award. Please have a read about the project here: We Can Be Heroes.

Illustration from We Can Be Heroes project

2021 was an amazing year for Kate Peridot professionally, despite all the other crazy goings on in the world. Discovered via a Twitter pitch event, she signed with her agent Becky Bagnell in December 2020, and received her first book offer in May 2021 from Walker, and three more have followed, one from Dorling Kingsley and two from Bloomsbury. Kate writes creative non-fiction for primary years and her first book will be published in spring 2023.

Kate Peridot

More good news for Emma Finlayson-Palmer who has had a YA short story published by Northern Gravy entitled Death Girl, and another YA short story has been accepted by PaperBound magazine to be published in the Spring issue.

Emma Finlayson-Palmer

Maisie Chan is singing loud and proud as she is going to be part of the official World Book Day launch event at the home of Matilda the Musical with Cressida Cowell, Chris Riddell and many others.

Promotional material for World Book Day Live

Niki Leonidou is very excited to share some great news with you of her creative journey so far. One day, towards the end of the first quarantine, she got an email from a USA based agent. She loved Niki's work and wanted her to do a sample for a (brilliant) story written by a USA author and already approved by Clavis. If Clavis liked her sample, she would get the job to illustrate the book! Less than two years later, the picture book The Purple Pail, written by Christine Leronimo and illustrated by Niki, was not only published by Clavis in Belgium in 2021, but is now translated and out in Malaysia, as well!

Niki Leonidou

Have you got good news to brighten our day? No matter how big our small let us share your joy! 

*All images courtesy of authors mentioned above. 


Have you got good news to share? New book? New agent? Award nominee or winner? Are you a new member? Say hi and let us know. Why not send an email over with your good news to celebrations@britishscbwi.org, together with a picture and any links so we can celebrate too! 

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