Not the Worst Thing Ever!

Not the Worst Thing Ever front cover
Front cover

I had the opportunity to illustrate a children’s book for Poke Prize Press, who publish books to help people live well with Type 1 Diabetes. The book is titled Not the Worst Thing Ever!: A Gross, Giggly Guide to Dealing with Diabetes, and the subtitle sums it up pretty well. Aimed at children 5–10 yrs old who have Type 1 Diabetes, it humorously contrasts common diabetes management tasks with things that are … way worse … and way gross!

From the book description:

This book is gross. Like really gross. You probably shouldn’t read it if you gag easily. But you probably should read it if you are looking for ways to ease worries during your diabetes care routine.

It turns out that there are a lot of things that are way worse than checking blood sugar, getting a shot, changing an insulin pump infusion site, and changing a continuous glucose monitor. As the old saying goes, taking care of your diabetes is a lot better than getting pooped out by a great white shark.

With laugh-out-loud lines by Gillian King-Cargile and delightfully disgusting illustrations by Shawn Turek, this feel-better diabetes book will reassure readers that getting (or giving) a little poke is not the worst thing ever!

Not the Worst Thing Ever inside spread 1
Pg 12–13 spread. Click for larger image.
Sketch of pg 12-13 of the book "Not the Worst Thing Ever"
Tight sketch used for final illustrations on pg 12–13. (Text was just blocked out at this stage.)
Not the Worst Thing Ever inside spread 2
Pg 14–15 spread. Click for larger image.
Not the Worst Thing Ever inside spread 2
Pg 24–25 spread. Click for larger image.

As an illustrator this was a super fun project to work on. The situations that Gillian came up with are so vivid that it was easy for me to get the tone they were going for and come up with some humorous and gross illustrations. And lets be honest, it’s not every day you get to draw snot, slimy worms, and shark poop – which is pretty silly and fun!

I also did the cover, layout, and graphic design for the book. I have a graphic design background, so it’s nice to be able to use that to bring everything together into a final book form.

The book is available now in ebook, paperback, and hardcover from Amazon, IndieBound, and Barnes & Noble. Learn more about the book at