Wednesday, 23 April 2014


There's another me that's naughty...
When my second son was very young, each time he did something he knew he wasn't supposed to do (like take chocolate from the fridge or draw on the walls - to be honest, I can't remember many of the naughty things he did but he was a joyfully ebullient boy!) he would say: "The Shadow R did it…" or sometimes: "The Bad R did it". 
It was way too funny for us to ever be cross and it got him out of a lot of trouble...This imaginary other self that did all the naughty stuff was really a very clever tactic indeed…We could all do with one of those.

The picture on the right was a character from one of his early comics - I say that as if he still draws them - sadly he doesn't. This guy looks like a pyro - not sure what the M is for - R can't remember either - nor what his superpower is, although presumably it's something to do with fire: Matchman? Maybe it's just a boy incarnation of Messy Monster!

Anyway, I was thinking about "The Shadow R" a while back and came up with this...

There’s another me that’s naughty

There’s another me that’s naughty
And it’s very plain to see
That the other naughty person
Absolutely isn’t me.

When I tidy up my bedroom
I make sure it’s spic and span
But the other me that’s naughty
Doesn’t buy into my plan!

So with everything I put away
The naughty me will shout
That he hasn’t finished playing,
And leave all the best toys out…

When my clothes are in a jumble
Don’t you see, it’s just the same?
It’s not me that left them messy
It’s the naughty me to blame!

Oh that special bar of chocolate
That went missing from the drawer,
It’s the naughty me who took it
(Like the many times before…)

And if someone trampled mud in,
Well there’s no use in asking: “Who?”
It’s the naughty me that just forgot
The thing he had to do.

So remember when you think it’s me
I’m really not the one
It’s the naughty me that’s far too fond
Of having all the fun!

© GD December 2013

BACKGROUND information...

My first picture book - called A Possum's Tail - is a collaboration with brilliant illustrator Alex Barrow and came out 6th February 2014. A second book called London Calls! is a whistle-stop tour of London, led by a Pearly grandma and her granddaughter. London Calls! came out on 4th September 2014 and is my second book with Alex Barrow. A Possum's Tail was nominated for the 2015 CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal.
Both books are by Tate Publishing.

Please see my CURRICULUM VITAE for more details & updates.

As well as writing children's books, for children's television and two award-winning children's magazines, I do both private and commercial art commissions, a selection of which you can see here.

The children's shoes are part of an ongoing series of "first shoes", including several cards commissioned by the Almanac Gallery.

Hand-drawn, bespoke invitations, announcements, portraits and menus, such as the examples here are also available upon request..

Any enquiries please email:


I've been a regular contributor to children's art and science magazine OKIDO since 2007. HAPPY 10th BIRTHDAY (WOW) beautiful Okido!

An Okido animated kids tv show, based on characters from the magazine is currently in production with Doodle/Squintopera The original adaptation of the show (co-created/adapted by myself, producer Ceri Barnes and Doodle Productions) was acquired by CBeebies. 52 x 11 minute episodes will be coming to a screen near you soon in 2015.......... . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .............................
N E W S F L A S H! MESSY GOES TO OKIDO Series TWO is now in production, following a super-successful 52 episode first series!



Cartoon Forum 2011 Okido booklet

Cartoon Forum 2011 Okido booklet
Okido Cartoon Forum 2011

Happy Birthday OKIDO!

Happy Birthday OKIDO!
Okido was 5 years old this issue...the wonderful art and science magazine for kids I've been lucky enough to have worked on for the past - 8 - years now