PRN: Animal Magic! 'the World in Infographics: ANIMAL KINGDOM' Wins UK's Sole Award for Educational Writing

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Animal Magic! 'the World in Infographics: ANIMAL KINGDOM' Wins UK's Sole Award for Educational Writing


LONDON, December 2, 2014 /PRNewswire/ --

The winner of the 2014 Educational Writers' Award is the world in infographics: ANIMAL KINGDOM by Jon Richards and Ed Simkins.

The result of this year's Award - the UK's only award for educational writing - was announced this afternoon by Tristram Hunt MP, Shadow Secretary of State for Education, at the All Party Parliamentary Writers Group (APWG) Winter Reception at the House of Commons.

the world in infographics: ANIMAL KINGDOM, published by Wayland, teems with fascinating facts about animals. From the weight of krill a blue whale can eat - measured in cars - to the number of offspring a garden snail can produce in a year, readers can't help but marvel at the dazzling variety of animal life: the biggest, smallest, deadliest and rarest, visualised in icons, pictograms and graphics.

This year's judges - teacher Vanessa Casey; school librarian Aidan Higgins; and author Anne Rooney - were unanimous in their praise for the winning title, describing it as:

"An outstanding book to engage any reader in this Information Age. More information is packed into its vivid, colourful pages than looks possible, all presented through brilliant, easy-to-read infographics. The whole book jumps out at you and is thoroughly engaging and informative." 

Presenting the winning authors with a cheque for £2,000, Tristram Hunt commented:

"My congratulations to the winners of the Educational Writers' Award and to all the shortlisted authors on their outstanding writing for children. I'm very pleased to support this ALCS & Society of Authors award which celebrates inspiring educational writing." 

Further information about the winning authors can be found in the Editor's Notes below.

The 2014 Educational Writers' Award focused on books for 11-18 year olds, published in 2012 and 2013. the world in infographics: ANIMAL KINGDOM beat off strong competition from the three other titles shortlisted for this year's Award. They were: Keep Your Cool: How to Deal with Life's Worries  and Stress, written by Dr Aaron Balick and illustrated by Clotilde Szymanski (Franklin Watts); Mission: Explore FOOD, written by The Geography Collective and illustrated by Tom Morgan-Jones (Can of Worms); and The Danger Zone: Avoid Being Sir Isaac Newton!, written by Ian Graham and illustrated by David Antram (Book House).

The Educational Writers' Award was established in 2008 by the Authors' Licensing & Collecting Society (ALCS) and the Society of Authors to celebrate educational writing that inspires creativity and encourages students to read widely and build up their understanding of a subject beyond the requirements of exam specifications.

Editor's Notes 

About the Winning Authors 

Jon Richards has worked for a range of publishers on illustrated non-fiction books for both adults and children during a 20-year career in publishing. In 2001, Jon set up his own company, Tall Tree, which works with some of the biggest children's publishers putting together illustrated non-fiction books that sell around the world. While predominantly an editor, he has also written nearly 50 books for children, including the 12-volume World of Infographics series for Wayland, which he developed with Ed Simkins. He currently lives in Harpenden, Hertfordshire, and is married with two children and a dog.

Ed Simkins was born in Southfields, London in 1970. As a child he was constantly drawing and painting and, as a consequence, decided this was as good a way as any to make a living. Ed studied fine art at Chelsea School of Art and graphic design at Coventry Polytechnic, graduating with a degree in graphic design in 1992. He has worked for a number of publishers and book packagers during a 20-year career in publishing. For the last 10 years he has been the Art Director at Tall Tree Books where he has designed and illustrated many books including the world in infographics series for Wayland. He currently lives in Twickenham where he can occasionally be found playing tennis, running in Bushy Park and generally enjoying the Thames riverside.

About the Judges 

Vanessa Casey has taught French, German and Spanish for the past 22 years and was Head of Languages in two schools, including Burlington Danes Academy in West London, where she is currently working with the charity IntoUniversity to promote higher education to students where there is no background of HE. She also organises Maths Masterclasses in local primary schools.

Aidan Higgins has worked as a school librarian in a number of London schools since 2005, following his MA in Arabic Literature and Translation at the School of Oriental and African Studies. Since August 2008, he has been Learning and Resources Centre Manager at The Bridge Academy in Hackney, East London.

Anne Rooney describes herself as a writer of short books for short people and longer books for longer people. She is a prolific author for all ages: her current book projects include Mega Machine Record Breakers; Keeping Safe: Around Drugs, Alcohol and Cigarettes and retellings of Dracula and Jekyll and Hyde.

The Society of Authors (SoA) 

The Society of Authors has been serving the interests of professional writers for more than a century. Today it has more than 9,000 members (from novelists to doctors, textbook writers to ghost writers, broadcasters to academics, illustrators to translators) writing in all areas of the profession. Services include the confidential, individual vetting of contracts, and help with professional disputes. In addition, the SoA holds meetings and seminars, publishes a quarterly journal, The Author, and maintains a database of members' specialisations. It administers a wide range of prizes, as well as the Authors' Foundation, which is one of the very few bodies making grants to help with work in progress for established writers. For further information, contact or see

The Authors' Licensing & Collecting Society (ALCS) 

ALCS collects fees on behalf of the whole spectrum of UK writers: novelists, film & TV script writers; literary prize winners; poets; freelance journalists; translators and adaptors, as well as thousands of professional and academic writers who include nurses, lawyers, teachers, scientists and college lecturers. All writers are eligible to join ALCS: further details on membership can be found at ALCS collects fees that are difficult, time-consuming or legally impossible for writers and their representatives to claim on an individual basis: money that is nonetheless due to them. Fees collected are distributed to writers twice a year in February and August. Since its inception, ALCS has distributed over £350 million to the nation's writers. For further information, contact or see htt! p://

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