Ask An Author: What author inspires you most?

(Edited by Brian Rock)

This month we’re asking children’s authors…

What author inspires you most?

Kenn Nesbitt: I have been inspired by many, many different authors, but I suppose Jack Prelutsky has had the biggest influence on my writing.

Kenn is the National Children’s Poet Laureate: author of BIGFOOT IS MISSING, THE BIGGEST BURP EVER, THE ARMPIT OF DOOM, and many other  books of poetry for children. http://www.poetry4kids.com/

Jamie Michalak: So many! I love children’s book authors who write with children in mind, and don’t seem to care what grown-ups think. They write with a fearlessness, and they understand that children, to quote Tedd Arnold, “aren’t some fragile, idealized creatures needing to be pampered with precious thoughts.” Roald Dahl is one of those authors. Ellen Potter is another.

Jamie is a former editor and author of over a dozen children’s books including THE COZIEST PLACE, SO YOU WANT TO CATCH BIGFOOT, and The JOE & SPARKY series. http://www.jamiemichalak.com/index.htm

Stephanie McPherson: Every author I enjoy inspires me in some way or another. I guess I’d say Louisa May Alcott had the most impact because it was the book LITTLE WOMEN that inspired me to be a writer. But I could literally name dozens of writers here.

Stephanie is the author of over two dozen nonfiction books for children, including ICEBERG RIGHT AHEAD!, ORDINARY GENIUS (The Story of Albert Einstein), and SUSAN B. ANTHONY.  https://www.goodreads.com/author/list/71104.Stephanie_Sammartino_McPherson

Erica Kirov: Margaret Atwood – for both her beautiful language and her politics and the thoughts she shares with the world.

Erica is the author of the MAGIC KEEPERS trilogy. https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/2870843.Erica_Kirov

 Lana Krumwiede: There are many authors I could name, but Scott Westerfield came to my mind first. His books have great world building and perfect story arcs. I especially enjoy the Uglies series and the Leviathan series. I heard him speak about his writing process for Leviathan, and it was absolutely amazing.

Lana is the author of JUST ITZY and the PSI CHRONICLES trilogy. http://www.lanakrumwiede.com/

Anika Denise: I’m inspired by different authors at different times. Right now, I’m reading ALL THE LIGHT WE CANNOT SEE by Anthony Doerr and am completely in love with his language and the way he weaves a story. Other times, I’m inspired by the picture books I read to my daughter at night. Most recently, we read an advance copy of a book called RUDE CAKES by debut author-illustrator Rowboat Watkins. The book is quirky and hilarious and takes a completely unexpected turn. I love when authors surprise me. I’m a huge fan of Jamie Michalak’s and Kara LaReau’s books… oh, and Corey Rosen-Shwartz, Audrey Vernick, Amy Krouse Rosenthal, Kelly DiPucchio, Samantha Berger… whoops, you asked for just one… I got carried away.

Anika is the author of BAKING DAY AT GRANDMA’S, BELLA AND STELLA COME HOME, and PIGS LOVE POTATOES. http://www.anikadenise.com

Hazel Buys: A reviewer wrote the following about J.K. Rowling and it fixed in my mind as inspirational: “…she has stories coming out of her ears.” What an image! I’d love to have so many stories in my head that they spilled out of my ears!

Hazel is the author of OLAF’S DOOR. http://hazelbuys.com/

Brian Rock: The author who inspires me most is actually not a writer per say, but a performer. Jim Henson is my biggest inspiration. I love how he became child like to create, instead of creating for children – there is a big difference! Being unbound by adult sensibilities is wonderfully liberating for the creative process. The author who comes closest to that for me is of course Mo Willems.

Brian is the author of THE DEDUCTIVE DETECTIVE, WITH ALL MY HEART, PIGGIES, and DON’T PLAY WITH YOUR FOOD! http://brianrock.net/

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