NATASHA WING grew up just down the street fromartist Josef Albers. The author of the bestselling The Night Before series, she lives in Fort Collins, Colorado.
Where did you grow up?
What is your earliest memory of writing/drawing?
I wrote and illustrated a school report on squirrels.
What inspired you to write/illustrate your first book?
I had seen an illustration in another book of a frog that tried to hop up and see what was on the other side of a fence, so I wrote a counting book where frogs pile up to see what's on the other side of a wall.
Do you use your childhood as inspiration?
Sometimes, but I don't have a very clear memory so I like to pull from many people's experiences, and make some up as well!
What books from your childhood have most influenced your work?
Dr. Seuss, The Little Engine that Could, and Cinderella.
What about adult titles?
Making a Good Script Great by Linda Seger
What are your hobbies and interests besides reading and books?
Baking, yoga, astrology, wolves, fashion reality shows
Who are a couple of your favorite author/illustrators?
What is it about their work that inspires and interests you? Chris Van Allsburg for his illustrations-they are mysterious and magical. Amy Tan for her humor and defined characters. Typically, I don't like to choose favorites, but instead hope a piece of every author I read helps improve my skills.
What one or two words of advice would you give for young authors/illustrators?
Figure out the rules, then break them.
Natasha Wing; art by Julia Breckenreid
Holt Books for Young Readers
Henry Holt and Co. (BYR)
As a child, Josef Albers loved to watch his handyman father paint houses.When Josef grew up and became an artist, he reduced each image to its simplest shapes, breaking it down into blocks of color....