I find inspiration in looking at the work of other authors, illustrators, fine artists, and of course everyday things around me. The work of those I admire motivates me. It makes me hope one day I can create work that good! As for things around me, I just want to share the joy of those things. So I found it very interesting listening to Chris Gall speak about what inspired him to write and illustrate There's Nothing to do on Mars. I had the pleasure of meeting Chris last weekend at a wonderful local bookstore, Changing Hands. After talking with him during a phone interview in November, I had been really looking forward to meeting him. Did I mention I'm a huge fan of his work!
So you wonder what could the seed of inspiration be for a book with a setting on Mars? Well, none other than a place right here in the state of Arizona, a place I've visited many times, a place I find full of joy and wonder, I place that's said to have a spiritual aura, a place called a vortex, a place called red-rock country. That place is Sedona!
He visited that place, and it made him think, this is what what Mars would look like, he then came up with the title, from there he had to work out the story. As he said, it had to be about more than "nothing to do", or it would be a very short story! So that seed of inspiration had to grow in his creative mind. That's the part where authors and illustrators really get to have fun. And do a lot of research. (He picked an actual mountain on Mars to be the center of his story.) An idea is just an idea, unless you turn it into a story. When you read this story you'll find out there really is a lot to do on Mars. And yes, I do have another signed book to add to my collection.