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" I gobbled up books when I was growing up. I loved Half Magic, My Father's Dragon, Uncle Scrooge Comics, and many more. We didn't get a TV until I was almost finished with third grade. My family played word games on the long car trips we took, so I enjoyed fooling around with words.
I studied English literature in college and graduate school.
I'd been intrigued by picture books for a long time, but reading to my children made me much more tuned in to them. My daughter and son loved silly stories. We were on a dull car trip in 1982 when I tinkered with animal rhymes, which turned into Sheep in a Jeep. Sheep on a Ship, Sheep in a Shop, Sheep Out to Eat, Sheep Take a Hike, Sheep Trick or Treat, and Sheep Blast Off! have followed.
When raccoons made a mess of our garbage cans, I was exasperated, but I had to admire their can-do spirit. I imagined them singing cheerfully about their garbage raids. The result was Raccoon Tune.
It's fun to see stories take shape--especially when artists like Margot Apple and Howard Fine add so much to them!"--nancyshawbooks.com