Q. How much money do you make?
A. Who are you? My wife/accountant?! The short answer is... not enough! I do lots of other illustration work besides books, ranging from magazines to wine labels, to help pay dem bills. But anytime someone gives me money for drawing anything, I consider myself lucky!
Q. How do you colour in between the lines?
A. Practice. But can I tell you a secret? Don't worry about those lines. Just have fun colouring in. Those lines aren't even that important!
Q. What is your favourite book that you've made?
A. Birds, Birds and More Birds is definitely my favourite because it stars my Nan! Plus I really like drawing birds! Feathers are fun.
Q. What kind of car do you drive?
A. I prefer to walk (it's good exercise) or catch the bus or train (so I can read a book - plus all the random people on public transport are great inspiration for stories!) I do have a car, but I don't really like driving. Or more specifically I don't like parking/other drivers/traffic.
Q. What's your next book about?
A. That's a secret!
Q. Where do your ideas come from?
A. Ideas can come from anywhere, so always be ready! I keep a notebook and pen handy at all times so I can jot down anything that pops into my head. It might be words or a book title or a storyline or a character. I scribble it down to capture it on the page. Sometimes it ends up being nothing and sometimes it blossoms into a whole book.
An idea for a story might be triggered by something I've seen, heard, experienced or know but then it develops into something more. For example Birds, Birds and More Birds is based on my grandmother who likes feeding birds from her back window, but I exaggerated that scenario (so that every type of bird in Australia descended on her house) to make the story more exciting.
Q. Were you always good at drawing?
A. I've always LOVED drawing, so I've always been drawing, and the more you do something - the better you get at it! If you want to improve your drawing skills, my advice is to practice and to have fun when you draw. Don't agonise over getting everything perfect because it will never be perfect! Just enjoy the process of drawing.
Q. Can you draw me a picture of a cat?
A. Sorry. You didn't say please.
Q. Can you please draw me a picture of a cat?
A. Talk to my agent.
Q. Do you even have an agent?
Q. I have a great idea for a children's book.
A. Technically, that's not really a question, is it? Even still, I'm happy for you. It's a nice feeling when you come up with a good idea. I wish you the best with it.
Q. Can I tell you about my great idea for a children's book?
A. Oh... no thank you. I'm a bit busy right now. But good luck with it!
Q. Are you sure you don't want to hear about my great idea for a children's book?
A. I'm certain. Thank you. All the best though!
Q. It's really, really good!
A. I'm sure it is, but I'm not a publisher or an editor or an agent and I have a backlog of my own ideas I'm trying to work through. But seriously, good luck with your idea! I look forward to seeing it in print.
Q. Can I just run it past you?
A. I would kind of prefer if you didn't. I better get going. I'm on deadline. Good luck!
Q. Maybe you want to illustrate it?
A. Umm... no I don't want to illustrate it, sorry. I'm totally booked out for the next few years with my own projects. But again, good luck with your idea!
Q. Maybe you could tell your publisher about it?
A. Ohhh... I'm not sure I'm really comfortable with that. But please, don't let me stop you from following your dreams. If you have a great idea, go for it! Make it happen for yourself.
Q. This idea is so great it is going to be a best seller and you're going to be so sorry!
A. I already am.