ANOTHER Book Release Celebration- Interview with Christian Robinson

It’s what we’ve all been waiting for! Christian Robinson’s debut as author/illustrator with ANOTHER!

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Tell us a little bit about your new book, Another. 

This wordless picture book asks the question, what if you could travel or go to another world where you met another you? What might you do?

Tell us a little bit about the process of writing/illustrating Another, your first author/illustrator debut!

Typically, I’m given a manuscript and I begin to visualize and imagine what someone else’s words could look like in pictures. When creating ANOTHER, it began as pictures in my brain. Since this is my first solo book, I had to find my own voice as a storyteller. I created a little mockup book that I filmed myself flipping through, so that I could show publishers how I hoped a reader might engage with this book. This was important, since ANOTHER encourages the viewer to play around with the orientation of the book itself.

What made you decide to make the book wordless? 

As a visual storyteller, the book came to me in pictures. As I began to sketch things out, I found myself trying to find the right words to describe what was already being suggested in the pictures. As I struggled with this task and kept hitting roadblocks, I began to ask myself if words added anything to this particular story. The answer was no.

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Have you always been into illustrating?

Yes. Always! Like most kids, I loved drawing and making up stories. I was raised my grandmother, and lived in a small one bedroom apartment in Los Angeles with my brother, aunt, and two cousins. Drawing and making pictures was a way for me to create a space for myself, a world where I could make anything happen on the page.

What’s the most exciting part of your job?

There’s a moment where creativity seems to be flowing and I’m not worried about what people might think, or self-doubt, but am focused on enjoying the process of making stuff. That’s the most exciting part for me.

What inspires your creativity?

What doesn’t inspire my creativity? Seriously, everything from a song to a breeze, from hearing a phrase walking by a group of people, to a trip to the museum can spark an idea. I think what drives me to create is the desire to share, or communicate, to express something in me that needs to get out.

What is one thing that readers don’t know about you, that only you could tell us?

I can recite the entire script of the Disney animated film The Lion King. I wore our VHS copy out as a child watching it repeatedly.

If you weren’t writing/illustrating books, what do you think you’d be doing?

I would collect and sell antiques. I love beautiful objects, especially ones with history.

What can readers expect from you in the future?

After ANOTHER, I have two books that I worked on coming out in Fall 2019. The first is JUST IN CASE YOU WANT TO FLY, written by Julie Fogliano.

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I also was able to contribute (along with many other illustrators) to SUNNY DAY: A CELEBRATION OF SESAME STREET, a picture book based on the Sesame Street theme song written by Joe Raposo.

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