Meet the authors:
Steve Antony is an award-winning writer and illustrator of 21 picture books and best known for his ongoing Mr Panda series which has sold over 1 million copies worldwide. His other books include the award-winning modern classic The Queen’s Hat, Unplugged, Amazing and Green Lizards Vs Red Rectangles. Steve also illustrated the all-new Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (adapted by Peter Bently), Tim Minchin’s When I Grow Up and a 70th anniversary cover of The Famous Five.
He has contributed work towards LGBTQ+ anthology Proud, Drawing Europe Together and Kind. Steve is Swindon Libraries Patron to Children’s Reading Services, an ambassador for the National Literacy Trust and a committee member of The Society of Author’s Children’s Writers and Illustrators Group.
“As an Ambassador for Swindon Stories for a number of years I am delighted to be involved in this exciting new project. I can’t wait to bring the magic of stories to children in my community. Together we will explore the powerful realms of imagination, finding some much needed escapism along the way!”
Simon Farnaby has written and starred in some of the UK's best-loved family TV such as Horrible Histories, and Ghosts, and films such as Paddington and Paddington 2. The Wizard in My Shed was his first children's book. When not writing or acting, Simon is a keen amateur wizard and can often be found in his garden (unsuccessfully) conjuring vegetable spells.
“I am delighted to be part of Connecting Stories with the National Literacy Trust and Swindon Stories. With the literacy attainment gap growing ever wider during these difficult times, it’s more important than ever that we nurture imagination and help children realise their potential. I can’t wait to share my own love of reading with the children of Swindon.”
Rebecca has been obsessed with words since she was young and is not ashamed of it. As a word nerd, she fills her spare time buried in books, writing random stuff, and learning new things that are nothing to do with essays and useless theories.
Some of that spare time is also spent on YouTube and accidental procrastination. She has written many things which make her cringe and a few things which she is happy with, but is nonetheless always thinking and imagining. She has no pets because a horse will not fit comfortably in the back garden.
"I'm very excited to be supporting the Connecting Stories initiative in Swindon. As well as being an author, I work as a librarian in a Swindon secondary school, so it's great to be able to inspire reading and writing in young people in many ways and to connect with even more children and young people! I have enjoyed creative writing since I was nine years old and hope to encourage children across Swindon to write their stories too, whether it's their first or their hundredth."