Author Aaron Reynolds

Every Friday, a children's literature advocate drops by Watch. Connect. Read. to finish my sentences. (I'm a lucky guy, eh?) The first guest of 2014 is author Aaron Reynolds. We chatted about Dan Santat, Peter Brown, meat, school visits, and picture books. I wrote the words in red, and Aaron wrote the words in black. Thank you, Aaron! 

You should move Carnivores to the top of your to-read pile because it's funny, snarky, a little bit dark, and oh-so-delicious!

Dan Santat’s illustrations do so much more than illustrate my story. He has an amazing way of telling his own story in the pictures that breathes a whole new dimension into my story. Just take a look at the opening and closing endpapers to see what I mean.

Opening endpapers...

And closing endpapers...

That's pure Santat.

My school visit presentation for Carnivores involves a high-stakes competition, a ringing bell, audience participation, exclusive sneak peeks, and a fair amount of cackling and giggling. Intrigued? Invite me to your school to experience it for yourself!

Mr. Peter Brown and I never met during the creation of Creepy Carrots. Not on e-mail, voicemail, nothing. We've since met, but most people are surprised to find we never collaborate directly.

School libraries still excite me. You never know what they'll look like, what will be on the walls, what books will be facing out. Whenever I visit a school, even if my presentations are in the gym, I never leave without seeing the library.

Reading is inspiring. It's the single biggest thing I do to keep new ideas flowing and my imagination fed. Happiness is walking out of the library with a stack of 40 kids books to devour. I never get tired of it.

Publication date: 4/1/14 (no joke)

Picture books are the coolest art medium I know. A picture book can hold so many layers, so much richness. Humor, poignancy, creepiness, drama, darkness...all these can be layered into a picture book and it can handle it. Whatever else I write, I hope I never stop creating picture books.

Mr. Schu, you should have asked me how carnivorous I really am. I actually used to be a vegetarian (for 6 years). It was a Whopper that brought that was my veggie undoing. Since going carnivorous again, I've eaten an entire menagerie of meats, including octopus, kangaroo, ostrich, emu, elk, buffalo, alligator, pheasant, goat, quail and turtle.

Thank you, Aaron!  

I am giving away a copy of Carnivores

Rules for the Giveaway 

1. It will run from 1/3 to 11:59 p.m. on 1/5. 

2. You must be at least 13. 

3. Please pay it forward. 


  1. I loved these clips! Aaron has so much energy, and I totally agree with his advice for young writers: TRUST YOUR IDEAS! :D


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