A story about a young girl sucking the hearts out of people in her town might not seem a heartwarming story for children, but Kelly Canby’s entry into a new anthology is just one of many guaranteed to elicit a laugh from younger readers.
Some of Australia’s funniest media personalities and best children’s authors have come together to contribute to Funny Bones, a children’s comedy anthology that raises money for War Child Australia.
The huge collection of rib-tickling stories, rhymes, comics, jokes and much more involves some of Australia’s favourite and funniest people, including Hannah Gadsby, Josh Pyke, Andy Griffiths and Terry Denton.
Included in the book, which was released yesterday, are WA children’s authors/illustrators Canby and James Foley.
An illustration posted to Instagram kickstarted Canby’s entry in the book, and had initially been slated to run as its own picture book.
“One of the Allen & Unwin publishers saw it and said there was a story in it, which we later decided could be put into Funny Bones,” she said.
A cartoonist for many years, Foley created his first children’s picture book a decade ago, and decided to create several cartoons for his entry into the anthology.
“It’s wonderful to be giving stories towards a good cause like this, particularly ones that may not be big enough for a picture book,” he said.
“It’s nice to be able to still get them out there.” A self-confessed big child, Canby said the opportunity to help raise funds for a charity spurred her to get involved. She was also excited by the chance to be published alongside some big names.
“It’s about being able to give something back. But when you’re asked if you want to be in a book with Andy Griffiths, you don’t say no to that,” she said.
Both described the book as a wonderful tasting platter, with its huge size a great way to keep younger readers engaged.
“Every child will find someone they know in here but they can also be introduced to new authors,” she said.
Funny Bones was released yesterday, November 5.