Update: Marjorie van Heerden’s 2017, 2018, 2019 
and the first half of 2020

“These past few years I have been very busy illustrating and loving every moment – but I have neglected updating my CV.  Below is a summary of what I have been busy with...”


Marjorie started working on the The Adventures of Willy Nilly & Thumper series in 2014. The first year she spent mostly developing the characters and the design of the books, and also creating visual material for a website to market the series. At the same time the team in the USA chose the first few stories, rewriting and editing where necessary and sorting out the order in which these first stories would be published. And then Marjorie started with the illustrations. 

In early in 2016 the first two books were printed.  In May 2016 the author, Jim Henry, invited Marjorie to fly to Texas, as his personal guest, for the official launch of the first two Willy Nilly and Thumper books.

The following years (2016 onwards) Marjorie spent illustrating the books in the The Adventures of Willy Nilly & Thumper series, written by Jim Henry (with Jimmy Patterson) and published by Willy Nilly Books, Midland, Texas.
Published in 2016:
    Book One: The Lost Treasure of Mount Methuselah
    Book Two: The Hermit’s Last Hairs
    Book Three: Stella Star
Published in 2017:
    Book Four: Charlie the Cross-Eyed Crocodile
    Book Five: The Very Hungry Ogre
After the five books in this series, the adventures of Willy Nilly and Hopper (Thumper’s new name) continue in a new series called the Tales from Hoop ‘n’ Holler:
    Book One: The Wizard’s Apprentice (2018)
    Book Two: The Underground Invaders (2019)
    Book Three: Sly Fox Stew (2020)
To date there are six books in the Tales from Hoop ‘n’ Holler series, so there are three more books in the pipeline.


The books in the series received some awards in the USA:
The Adventures of Willy Nilly & Thumper: Book Three Stella Star (2016) - Winner of the 2018 Reader Views Kids Choice Award




The Adventures of Willy Nilly & Thumper: Book Four: Charlie, the Cross-Eyed Crocodile (2017) - the 2017 Writer’s Digest Award - Honorable Mention.




Tales from Hoop ’n’ Holler: Book One - The Wizard’s Apprentice (2018) – Bronze medal winner of the 2019 Moonbeam Children's Book Awards  an award from entries all over the world.
The Wizard’s Apprentice was also the Winner of the 2019 Readers Views Kids Award for Best Children’s Book of the Year.







Although this series of amazing American books has kept Marjorie very busy during this period she did manage to illustrate at least one book for a South African publisher each year...

In 2015 and 2016 Marjorie was also doing illustrations for Storiemuis (“Story Mouse”), the series of Afrikaans children's books written by Leon Rousseau and published by Human & Rousseau Publishers in Cape Town – The six books in the series were illustrated by three illustrators, Marjorie, Karen Ahlschläger and Johann Strauss. Storiemuis Book 6” was shortlisted for the MER Prize at the 2017 Media24 Books Literary Awards for illustrated children's books.

Marjorie also illustrated a book by South African author Wendy Maartens. It is a collection of stories related to the sea, and published in both English (as Sea Stories) and Afrikaans (as Stories van die See) in 2016.


In 2017 Marjorie illustrated Die Leeutemmer se Assistent  , written by Solet Scheeres (in Afrikaans) and published by LAPA Publishers (South Africa).




In 2018 she illustrated Peter Pan and Laurie, A Sequel to Peter Pan and Wendy by J. M. Barrie, written by Marié Heese, published in the original English and in Afrikaans translation by Protea Books in 2019.



Grandma Lim’s Persimmons- written by Sunita Lad Bhamray, illustrated by Marjorie Van Heerden was republished in Korea by Jungin Publishing Co (Originally Published by Oyez!Books, Malaysia May 2013).




In 2016 and in 2017 Marjorie was, for the seventh and eighth consecu­tive years, invited to present a 5-day Children’s Book Illustration Course at the Centre for Comic, Illustrative and Book Arts (CCIBA) at the Stellenbosch University’s Department of Visual Arts (part of a series of creative workshops offered by the university during the Spring Break).

Marjorie continued as Co-RA for the South African chapter of the SCBWI through 2016, 2017 and 2018, but because of her work load she decided that it was time to cut back on some of her additional commitments and she reluctantly decided to step down from being a Regional Advisor. So, on the 1st of December 2018 Marjorie van Heerden resigned as Co-RA of the South African chapter of the SCBWI. She received Regional Advisor Emerita status (which includes life time membership) from the SCBWI after 18 years of enthusiastic and dedicated leadership.

            Kathleen Ahrens, International Advisor Chair & Angela Cerrito, Assistant International Advisor wrote:
                Thank you for 18 years of Leadership.
                Many of you know Marjorie van Heerden (http://www.grafikon.co.za/) who has been founder and Co-RA of SCBWI’s South Africa chapter since 2003. But I bet you didn’t know that she also started the chapter in Greece and was RA for Greece for 3 years in 2000-2003.
Marjorie began illustrating children’s books in 1983. Before joining SCBWI, she was gathering children’s book people together for talks, workshops, lectures, and university courses. So, you can imagine the result when Marjorie and SCBWI finally connected!
In her own words: When I found out about the SCBWI I felt as if I had discovered friends and family I had never known about and since becoming a member I have been encouraged and supported to follow my dream of helping the children’s book writers and illustrators of Africa to develop their craft and to follow their own dreams.
Marjorie led SCBWI South Africa with a Co-RA by her side (first Paddy Bouma and since 2008 Elaine Ridge) and Jenny Hatton as ARA. Marjorie’s also had a team of dedicated committee members helping to make the magic happen. This team has organized an event at least every other month and several large international conferences hosting superstars like Ken Brown, Harriett Barton, Tony Ross, Katherine Patterson, Steve Mooser, and many others. The conferences and special events are too many to mention here, so I’ll mention only one. Marjorie initiated the first children’s book conference in South Africa. Towards Understanding hosted 550 delegates with keynote speaker Joseph H. Schwarcz, author of Ways of the Illustrator: Visual Communication in Children’s Literature and The Picture Book Comes of Age: Looking at Childhood Through the Art of Illustration.
Marjorie, we can’t thank you enough for all that you have done for SCBWI and for the world of children’s literature!
Marjorie’s last day as Co-RA was 1 December. She now joins the ranks of RAE. To congratulate her off list please write to marjorie@grafikon.co.za
Kathleen Ahrens, International Advisor Chair & Angela Cerrito, Assistant International Advisor
To continue:

From the beginning of 2020 Marjorie has been very busy. She finished the illustrations for Book Three: Sly Fox Stew of the Tales from Hoop ‘n’ Holler series. It was published in May this year.



And she is currently busy with the final colour illustrations for Jump the Moon, another American children’s book. It was written by Kathy Simmers and is to be published in the USA later this year (2020).

A selection of the rough spreads...







Fortunately, before the current lockdown, Marjorie managed to get together enough art materials to finish the next four books that are lined up. That means she will be able to continue working, so Marjorie will spend most of her time safely in her studio, during this terrifying Covid 19 Pandemic.  Although on request she helps illustrators on the Internet with their work (via zoom, the video and online chat communication service). You can contact her on marjorie@grafikon.co.za for more information about these one-on-one sessions.