Jane Ray's truly exquisite artwork has gained acclaim both in the UK and internationally. She is one of the most talented and distinctive illustrators in the children's book world and regularly exhibits her work at various galleries. Jane won the Smarties Prize with The Story of Creation; The Story of Christmas was shortlisted for the Kate Greenaway Award; and A Balloon for Grandad was shortlisted for the Mother Goose Award. Jane's recent books for Orchard include the delightful and original fairy tale The Apple-Pip Princess, the heartwarming The Dolls' House Fairy and the fabulously festive Twelve Days of Christmas. Jane lives in London. Margaret Mayo is an acclaimed storyteller and author who has been creating stories for children for over 35 years. She has written more than 50 books, including the bestselling Dig Dig Digging, Choo Choo Clickety-Clack! and Stomp, Dinosaur, Stomp!. A former teacher, Margaret uses her wide-ranging experience with children in her writing. She lives in Brighton. Geraldine McCaughrean has written over 140 books and plays for both adults and children, including Peter Pan in Scarlet, the official sequel to J M Barrie's Peter Pan, which was one of the most talked about and successful children's titles of 2006. Geraldine McCaughrean has won the Carnegie Medal, the Whitbread Children's Book Award (three times), the Guardian Children's Fiction Prize, the Smarties Bronze Award (four times), the Blue Peter Book of the Year award and the Blue Peter Special Book to Keep Forever award. Geraldine is the first author to have been short listed, by librarians, for the Carnegie Medal six times, on at least one occasion in each of the past four decades, thus once again recognising the quality of her writing over the years. Ian Beck is a popular illustrator of children's books and his work appears frequently in magazines and advertisements. He has designed the jackets of many adult novels including all the Penguin editions of David Lodge and the Alice Thomas Ellis books. Ian's first book for Orchard was Five Little Ducks, which was so successful that a 'Big Book' format was published. The Ugly Duckling and The Orchard Book of Fairy Tales followed and Ian also contributed illustration to The Orchard Book of Opera Stories. Ian has also illustrated The Orchard ABC and Little Angel written by Geraldine McCaughrean. Ian Beck lives in Richmond, Surrey with his wife and three children and keeps in close touch with children through frequent visits to schools and libraries. Rose Impey has been writing for children for over thirty years in which time she's had well over a hundred books published. She writes for all ages: picture books, early readers, older fiction and novels for young and pre-teens. She has made a specialty of rewriting traditional stories eg The Orchard Book of Fairy Tales. Before becoming a writer Rose was a primary school teacher and has maintained very close links with teachers and schools. She's a frequent visitor to classrooms which explains how she stays in tune with changing tastes and fashions. It also allows her the opportunity to road test her work throughout the process. Rose writes for different ages and different tastes, both for girls and boys. Much of it is light and funny but she also writes more serious thought-provoking stories. One of her other talents is the ability to read her work aloud well, which makes her much in demand for Book Weeks. She has written many highly successful series for Orchard: Animal Crackers, Titchywitch, Pirate Patch and more recently Nipper McFee. She's also the creator of the very popular Sleepover Club which was made into a major TV series. She lives in Leicestershire and has two daughters and four grandchildren, who are beginning to provide material for lots of new stories. Andrew Matthews is a celebrated children's author, who has written over fifty books and has twice been nominated for the Smarties prize. Angela Barrett completed a Masters Degree at the Royal College of Art, London and was taught by Quentin Blake. Upon leaving, Angela turned almost immediately to illustration as a career. Her first book was The King, The Cat and The Fiddle, for A&C Black, which was runner up in the Mother Goose Award in 1984. Since then, Angela has illustrated titles and designed book covers for well over 30 titles. Recognition of her work came with the Smarties Prize in 1988 for Can It Be True?, the WH Smith Illustration Award in 1991 for The Hidden House and being shortlisted for the Kurt Maschler Award in 1984 and 1989 and the Kate Greenaway Medal in 1993 for Beware, Beware! The Orchard Book of Stories from the Ballet and The Orchard Book of Shakespeare Stories are exquisitely illustrated by Angela and are regarded as definitive collections. Angela has become a leading figure in illustration and her unique talent is recognised internationally. Her artwork regularly features in exhibitions and is highly collectable. Angela lives in London. Emma Chichester Clark trained at the Chelsea College of Art and The Royal College of Art before becoming a full-time illustrator. She was awarded the Mother Goose Award in 1988 as the most promising newcomer to children's book illustration. She has since illustrated a number of picture books and collections for Orchard Books, Andersen Press, Pavilion and Methuen. For Orchard Emma illustrated The Orchard Book of Greek Myths in 1992 and in 1997 The Orchard Book of Greek Gods and Goddesses. Both books have been retold by award-winning writer Geraldine McCaughrean, who has retold a number of the Orchard Collections. Emma's lively illustrations perfectly match the magic of the stories which bring characters of Ancient Greece strikingly to life. Emma was also chosen to be one of eight artists to illustrate The Orchard Book of Opera Stories retold by Adele Geras which was published last Autumn to much acclaim. In 1998 Emma has joined forces with major poet and playwright, Adrian Mitchell, to illustrate his retelling of Robin Hood in The Adventures of Robin Hood and Maid Marian published in June. Emma has also written and illustrated a number of her own books, including Tea with Aunt Augusta, Miss Bilberry's New House and Little Miss Muppet Counts to Ten. She also illustrated some collections written by Laura Cecil including A Thousand Yards of Sea (Methuen), and has recently illustrated Thumbelina (Pavilion) and Little Red Riding Hood (Macdonald Young Books). Emma lives in Fulham in South West London, and has featured in the Illustrators Hall of Fame in The Mail on Sunday with other illustrators including Quentin Blake, Michael Foreman, Shirley Hughes, Anthony Browne and Raymond Briggs.