Creating Nip Nebs

The day we first saw Nip Nebs

Susi was only ever taught to read and write in English, despite Scots being her native language.  The catalyst for writing in Scots for weans came about after a rejection letter from a publisher who asked her to “omit the Scottish flavour and resubmit” her story for further consideration. 

The only Scots word in the story was the word “wee”.  

They say creativity is born out of sheer defiance and so Susi rejected them for reducing her language to the level of noodle seasoning!  She set about translating all her stories into Scots and that is when she discovered the sheer beauty of her Scots language. Childhood memories of Jack Frost inspired Nip Nebs which she then shared with her good friend Ruthie Redden.

Ruthie Redden loved the story and was inspired to paint the character Nip Nebs.  A labour of love that began in 2012 at a time when Scots language books were hardly ever published.  Ruthie and Susi always hoped to see the Nip Nebs stories published and somehow deep down knew that they would be.  

In 2017 Ruthie Redden was invited to exhibit her work in a small rural gallery in Bladnoch. It was there that publishers Jayne Baldwin (Foggie Toddle Books) and Shalla Gray (Curly Tale Books) saw Nip Nebs and were inspired to publish Nip Nebs. 

Since then we have been shortlisted for Bairns’ Book o the Year at the Scots Language Awards.  Our work in Scots Language education has been praised in the Scottish Parliament and we have were awarded the Scots Publishing Grant for The Last Berry.  In 2020 we launched our audio books which are a free resource for schools and educators. 

Process of creating the Last Berry

Team Nip Nebs

The braw team behin the creation o Scots language pictur buik Nip Nebs…

Susi Briggs

Author – Susi Briggs

Susi was compelled to write the lyrical story about Nip Nebs in Scots to inspire
others to celebrate and use the Scots language.
She is a registered storyteller with the Scottish Storytelling Centre. Susi is also a
registered author with the Scottish Book Trust and can be found on the Live
Literature Scottish Book Trust funding list.

Ruthie Redden

Illustrator – Ruthie Redden

Ruthie is an artist and illustrator living and working in Dumfries and Galloway, South West Scotland. She has long been inspired by the heather strewn hills, glorious beaches and ancient woodlands that surround her.

Ruthie’s work is filled with country ways, olden days, folklore, myth and magic. Through her art she encourages others to discover more about Scotland’s heritage; it’s wealth of folklore, traditions and language.

Curlytale Books

Publisher – Curly Tale Books

Curly Tale Books Ltd are a Scottish based publisher specialising in children’s picture books.

Nip Nebs

Nip Nebs

Sometimes Nip Nebs makes an appearance at events like The Nip Nebs Trail, where the books come to life in a magical 3 dimensional story trail. Please see Education for more information…

Alan McClure

Music – Alan McClure

Alan McClure is an author and musician based in Galloway, south-west Scotland. His creative output is eclectic and prolific, encompassing oral storytelling, poetry, songs, novels, short stories and audio sketches.

Alan composed the enchanting music and soundscape for both Nip Nebs audio Books.

Gary Lewis press photo

Narration – Gary Lewis

Gary Lewis is a Scottish Actor renowned for his roles in Outlander, Billy Elliot, Gangs of New York, Eragon and many more. Gary is a huge advocate for Scots Language and has kindly donated his time and talent to the Nip Nebs vision. Gary wrote the foreword in Nip Nebs and The Last Berry and has narrated both audio books.

Gary Lewis, IMDB