It’s been quite a week. The good news is that I spent the past 5 days in LA with family and friends I love, some of whom are pregnant and one of whom is my beautiful baby nephew, Felix. The bad news is political and too much to list here. But can I go back to a week ago today, when I found out Du Iz Tak had been awarded a Caldecott Honor? Will you humor me? Because I never really took the opportunity to say how much that meant to me or to thank the people that need thanking.
Suffice it to say, that disorienting 4 am phone call from a room full of librarians last Monday was one of the best moments of my life. I’ve been a lover, collector, and student of picture books since I was a teenager and I can’t overstate how much it means to me to be recognized this way. Thank you so much, Caldecott Committee!
Thanks also to Steve Malk for so many years of friendship, support, and impeccable guidance.
Thanks to my intrepid editor Liz Bicknell for understanding and embracing Du Iz Tak when it was an inscrutable manuscript without a single sketch to accompany it.
Thanks to Candlewick for all your hard work! Especially Erika Denn, Kristen Nobles, and Gregg Hammerquist who ever-so-patiently pieced this book together while I looked uselessly over his shoulder.
Thanks to Mac Barnett, Maile Meloy, Jon Klassen, and Colin Meloy for so much good advice about how to best tell this story.
Thanks to Colin for too many things to mention here, but especially for supporting me as an artist for 20 years, through thick and thin and parenthood. It's probably never easy when two artists raise kids together and - don't worry - we do our fair share of fighting over who should do what. But I couldn’t have made this book if I wasn't married to a guy who shares that responsibility equally and takes my art as seriously as he does his own.
Thanks to my parents and to my mother-in-law.
Thanks to the KBK!
And thanks to the kids book universe: the librarians, the booksellers, the agents, the people who work in publishing, the people who write the books, the people who make the pictures. It’s a very big crew and such a good one to be a part of. I feel so lucky to have landed among you all.