Last summer, Molly O'Neill had a post on her blog Ten Block Walk that finally got me started illustrating the book I'm working on now. The thought is, if you only have one chance, or one more chance to publish a book, what would that one book be about? What is the thing that you are meant to share with the world? What is your Most Important Book?
I was inspired by the question. For quite a while I'd been putting off my new project and that day I decided to go for it. This book of mine is big a concept book with lots of challenges, but I feel I've been working up to creating it all along. So, even if it never gets published, I think it's worth my time and energy to try and do it justice.
Do you have a book or a project that you've been working toward all your creative life? What is your Most Important Book about?
The thing is, all of the work we do leading up to that big project is necessary to our creative journey. We learn and improve from each picture we make or story we write. So I try not to feel bad about all those years I spent farting around doing random less important artwork- like the 10 years when EVERYONE said to me "you should illustrate children's books!" And I thought, "sure... maybe one day I will." I had no idea it was this hard or took this much time to accomplish. Why didn't I get started 10 years ago???!!!!??
And once we've managed to create and hopefully publish our Most Important Book, I'm sure through other experiences, influences, and inspiration we realize that in fact there's now a new Most Important Book in our future, just over the horizon.