Maurice Sendak, author of over 50 books including Where the Wild Things Are, sadly died on Wednesday. His stories were simply told but wise and true, which are the best qualities in any book.
Here are some reasons why the world will miss the grumpy man:
1) He sometimes sent letters like this:
2) This is how he thought:
“Once a little boy sent me a charming card with a little drawing on it. I loved it. I answer all my children’s letters — sometimes very hastily — but this one I lingered over. I sent him a card and I drew a picture of a Wild Thing on it. I wrote, “Dear Jim: I loved your card.” Then I got a letter back from his mother and she said, “Jim loved your card so much he ate it.” That to me was one of the highest compliments I’ve ever received. He didn’t care that it was an original Maurice Sendak drawing or anything. He saw it, he loved it, he ate it.”
Though he was described as a children’s writer / illustrator, Sendak didn’t actually believe that there’s much of a distinction between children’s and adults’ books. You can see his thoughts (drawn beautifully in collaboration with Art Spiegelman) HERE, which the NY Times kindly unlocked from behind the paywall for everyone to see.
“…The wild things cried ‘Please don’t go. We’ll eat you up. We love you so.’” (Where The Wild Things Are)