1. What is your earliest memory of writing/drawing?
I liked to try to draw dramatic pictures of me, generally a stick figure, captured by Indians, being in a wheelchair, or being lost in the woods or some other dire situation from a story I was read. Perfect practice for my “Grimm's Grimmest book."
2. What inspired you to write/illustrate your first book?
An uncontrollable urge. Who can say what inspires you to be hungry?
3. Do you use your childhood as inspiration?
Absolutely and now my own kids or their friends provide current brush ups. Being a good observer makes you a good writer and illustrator.
4. What books from your childhood have most influenced your work? What about adult titles?
I really loved the line quality of John R. Neil in the original old Oz books. Reading Maria Tatars hard facts of Grimms was what inspired the Grimm's Grimmest. After making my way through those dark illustrations I have been happy to illustrate other writer’s works.
5. What are your hobbies and interests besides reading and books?
I used to enjoy riding my old English motorcycles. There was always the element of surprise with them. What would be around that bend in the road and would my motorcycle actually get me to my destination. I also love relaxing with some Bach in the evenings at my piano.
6. What one or two words of advice would you give for young authors/illustrators?
Draw or write all the time to hone your craft and DON”T GIVE UP!