Deborah Underwood grew up in Walla Walla, Washington. She started out wanting to be an astronaut, but ended up being a street musician. For awhile. Then she worked as an accountant, (that's someone that works with math and money - those kinds of things that the Queen would like pay someone else to do.) But actually, Underwood typed memos for accountants. Which is very important, because memos tell people about things. And it was writing. Which led into what she does now.
Like most scribes (that's my queenish word for "writer") she says it's hard work. Don't let the sitting at the computer all day fool you. Writer's might be sitting on the outside, but on the inside they are fighting dragons, or bad guys, or showing people interesting places and things.
According to Underwood, the idea for The Quiet Book happened one day when...
The idea for this book came to me when I was waiting for a classical guitar concert to start. I noticed the expectant silence right before the guitarist started playing, and that made me think of other quiets. And yes, "before the concert starts quiet" made it into the book!
Have you read the book yet? If you have then you'll know that line is in there. Underwood has written several books for children, from picture books, to chapter books and even non-fiction books. Some of her titles are:
Pirate Mom, Sugar Plum Ballerinas, along with several non-fiction about The Northern Lights, Orangutans, and Giraffes. Check out Deborah Underwood's website for more information about her books and school visits.
Renata Liwska grew up in Warsaw, Poland. She now lives in Calgary, Canada with her husband who is also an illustrator.
You might think hat Liwska has a fancy studio, but from looking around at her website and blog, it seems most of her work is done in a simple moleskin note book. Sitting with a cup of hot coffee, or perhaps out to dine, she can pull out the book and work on all the characters dancing though her mind. Once she has a character she really likes and who she wants to put into one of her books, she scans the picture into Photoshop and finishes coloring it on the computer.
She too has illustrated several books. Red Wagon, Little Panda, Nikolai, the Only Bear, and Skylar Skylaramong others.
Her sketchbook goes with her just about everywhere, so that when something inspires her, she can draw it right then and there, not losing that special moment.
How about you? Are there times in your life that inspire a story? Perhaps while you are waiting in line, or maybe during a family vacation. Stories are everywhere and even young scribes can capture them by keeping a blank book close by.
If you love to sketch, keep a pencil in your pocket, like Harry Potter kept his wand. A small sketchpad will fit comfortably in a pocket. Do you see something unusual? Pull it out like a pirate pulling out his pistol and... draw!
|Here's a picture of the author and illustrator I found on Liwska's blog.|
See you again next week at The Castle Library.