As a mum I've spent a great many hours reading to my children, shopping for books, cruising library racks, arranging books on shelves and generally being immersed in the world of children's literature.
Some stories just work, they roll off the tongue, they're clever and witty, the pictures are gloriously detailed. We definitely have our favourites.
How are books created? Where do the ideas come from? I'm fascinated by it. When I came across this movie about the creative process behind children's author and illustrator Oliver Jeffers I first wanted to move to Ireland and drink up every word spoken by anyone with a voice like his. Then I wanted to get every book Oliver Jeffers has written and read them to my kids, preferably with the voice of Oliver Jeffers overlaid in my head. I think you'll feel the same way.
I especially love his comment near the end about feeling obligated to enjoy every minute of the wonderful creative life he is privileged to have.
If you want to learn more about the artist and take another peek into his life in NYC then visit 5 minutes with Franny where you'll find a lovely honest interview and lots of cool photos (Franny is a photographer who also lives in New York).
I'm still trying to crack the code - how did Oliver Jeffers get to where he is today? All I can glean is that he kept going, never took no for an answer and stayed true to his artistic vision. He's worked with some very cool collaborators, most recently Bono! Tapping into a supportive network might be good advice, making the most of any connections you have? I think it is also worth noting that it didn't happen overnight - nothing ever does!
Any other ideas?