Ask The Author
What inspired you to write this book?
The fog of depression was creeping back into my life and I wanted to try to explain what it felt like. I thought that the best way for me to do that would be to draw my feelings.
How did you create the shadowy pages to help show depression?
I used artist’s charcoal which is lovely and messy and smudgy and I drew on colossal sheets of paper. This was very different to how I usually work ; normally I work with watercolour paint and brushes on small sheets of paper. For Night Shift, I used my fingers and hands to smudge and rub the black charcoal into the paper. Very satisfying and very physical.
Do you like dragons?
I love dragons. I would love a dragon of my own, one that was loyal to me, one that would allow me to climb up onto its back and let me remain there when it flew into the night sky. It would curl up at my feet when I was working in my studio, guard the house, keep me warm in the winter and would fall asleep with its head in my lap. Imagine!
Did anyone inspire you to be an author and illustrator, if so, who was it?
My mum read bedtime stories to me when I was small, both my parents always bought books for me at birthdays and Christmas and I had two very enthusiastic English teachers at school who encouraged me to write ( praise and encouragement are always a good thing), but most of all, the hundreds of thousands of books I have read over a long lifetime have seeped under my skin, worked their way into my dreams, and have changed me, shown me other lives, other places, other dreams and have inspired me to dream bigger, live better and make the best books imaginable for as long as I possibly can.