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Sunday, November 27, 2016

The inspiration of 'everyday life'

“I think writers are observers and watchers. We always have our ears open and eyes open, so I might see something in everyday life that inspires me. And I think that's probably more than anything else. Everyday life is where I get my inspiration.” – Kevin Henkes

Born on this day in 1960, Henkes is one of America’s leading lights in the Children’s Book category, having just earned (in 2016) both a Caldecott Honor Book Award and a Geisel Honor Book Award for his book Waiting.  It is only the second time in publishing history that an author has won both awards in the same year.

As an illustrator, Henkes earlier won the Caldecott Medal for Kitten's First Full Moon (2004) and Caldecott Honor for Owen in 1994.  He earned Newbery Medal Honor Book Awards for his writing with Olive's Ocean in 2004 and The Year of Billy Miller in 2014.    All told, the Wisconsin native has authored and (mostly) illustrated           nearly 50 books, including another multiple award-winning book, Wemberly Worried, named the best children’s book of 2001. 

Adding to his earlier note on where and why he gets inspired, he said, “I like examining the ordinary, and by doing so, one hopefully reveals the extraordinary nature within.”

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