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Local Author Releases Children’s Book

By Randy Rutherford - Staff Writer | Jan 27, 2021

The award winning film and TV writer, cartoonist, musician and author, Dave Shelton, has released a new children’s book with a West Virginia publisher.

Dave, originally from New Jersey, started his career as a journalist with the Ridgewood News in New Jersey. He then went on to become a writer and cartoonist for national publications including RockBill and Tiger Beat Magazine. While with Tiger Beat, Dave was offered the opportunity to work as a writer and artist for MTV and Nickelodeon working on the hit show, Double Dare.

When he was hired to do art for Tim Allen (Home Improvement, The Santa Clause) and Robert Wuhl (Batman, Arliss) on their HBO Specials, Dave made the move to LA.

His dream job, working for legendary National Lampoon, came soon after he arrived in LA where he became senior writer and head of cartoon projects. “Ever since I saw Animal House and National Lampoon’s Vacation as well as having fallen in love with the magazine when I was in college at the University of Florida, I said to myself that someday I want to work for that company. When the chance to do that came, I jumped at it,” Dave explained. He was with them for 7 ¢ years.

After helping with Make-A-Wish to grant a wish which included a visit to the Everybody Loves Raymond set, Dave was offered the opportunity to work on the show as a writer and cartoonist. As a result, Dave worked on season 4 and was the creator of the popular Hackidu characters on one of their most popular episodes.

As an author and cartoonist, Dave has put out several books including the best selling “The Lemming Shepherds” released world-wide in the late 90’s, and “Brain Explosion” a politically incorrect humor book collection of his work from National Lampoon initially released in 2013.

“Brain Explosion” is available on Amazon, at Barnes and Noble and is part of the West Virginia library system including Sistersville Public Library.

Dave also produced, wrote and directed the award winning sitcom, Against Type, starring Roland Kickinger (Terminator Salvation), Stephen Furst (Animal House) and Jennette McCurdy (ICarly) and Professor Creepy’s Scream Party, a teen show starring Kevin Thompson (Star Wars), Jennifer Lyons (Married with Children) and Irwin Keyes (House of 1000 Corpses). Both are available on Amazon Prime TV.

After living in LA for 30 years, Dave decided he had enough of the crime, traffic, etc. He answered an ad on journalismjobs.com for a reporter for the InnFormer, a local publication in Sistersville in 2019. “I had several projects set up and said that I don’t need to live in LA to be able to work on a national level. A lot of my friends in the industry had moved and were still producing and getting their films and other projects out. I started my career as a journalist so when I found the InnFormer needed a reporter and I was offered the position, I moved right away. I have to say, that after now being here for over a year, I have fallen in love with the people and the serenity and slow pace of the area and have made West Virginia my home now.”

Since arriving in Sistersville, Dave started a radio show on WRSG 91.5 FM at Tyler Consolidated called Cemetery Go Go, a late Saturday night radio show and has released a new children’s book titled “Bag Boy and Sweet Slob” with West Virginia publisher Headline Books out of Terra Alta. Dave said that he found the publisher through his time doing research at the Sistersville library.

The book is loosely based on his relationship with his fiance at the time. Dave explains that he received many “swag” bags and other gift bags from all the red carpet, award shows and events he attended. So much so that his fiance said he was becoming a bag boy. In response he nicknamed her Sweet Slob because she was so sweet but a complete slob. “We used to tease each other but I thought it would make a great children’s book so I sat down and began writing. I came out with the first draft in like twenty minutes,” Dave said. Adding that the story is a positive lesson for kids and adults alike.

“Bag Boy and Sweet Slob” was released on Dec 20, 2020 and is available on Amazon and at headlinebooks.com. It is also part of the West Virginia library system and available at the Sistersville library. Dave would be happy to sign copies of the book purchased on the publisher’s or Amazon’s website.