Archives: Hippo News

Creating our stories has been a long and careful process that involves a great deal of checking and editing and checking again. Our first book ‘Hide & Seek Hippo’ was produced entirely using hand drawn, water-colour paintings which were scanned and laid out digitally once each one was finalised. For Sam’s Shadow’s story we have had to adjust the way we work significantly – mostly because Lauren now lives in the Netherlands, and Melissa has been living in several countries in Africa!

The distance has meant that texting, video calls and digital artworking have been essential components of our process for book two. But we knew this before we began and we also knew that with two such different stories, we wanted two completely different visual styles. It has been great fun developing the two worlds which are opposite in so many ways. Hippo’s is so bright and wild and outdoors, a real African adventure, while Sam’s is much more controlled and indoors; his colours coming from popping shades set against the shadowy palette of greys and blacks. One tale is prose and one in rhyme. But both have friendship at their heart and both encourage children to address their fears and overcome them.

Here are some pictures of how it all happened.

I’ve been in the recording studio!

6 great reasons to read stories with your kids every night and guidance how to improve the experience for everyone involved (especially if you’re a nervous reader). Author of ‘Hide & Seek Hippo’ & former English teacher, Melissa Kay, talks about why it’s so important […]

Listen to some animal sounds!

Try out a few of these animal sound files and see if you recognise any of the sounds the animals in our story make when they are laughing.

Competition!… and a video that’s guaranteed to make you grin!

WIN a package for the school of your choice, including: – A library copy of ‘Hide & Seek Hippo’ – A copy of the ‘Hide & Seek Hippo’ script and recording of the show so they can put the play on themselves – A parcel […]

Hippo on stage!

In a musical extension of our little tale Hide & Seek Hippo is premiering at the local theatre here in Dar es Salaam at the end of the month. With original songs (and a rap!); lots more action and laughs; new characters and an endearing […]

Hippo is off to China!

Shen Wai International School has very kindly invited me to be the guest author for their literature event and I’m flying over to share everything I love about stories, mentor some older students as they prepare a book for the publishing process and share Hide […]