aprilhenry (aprilhenry) wrote,

David Shannon owes his success to his mom

I got to meet David Shannon a couple of months ago at the Pacific Northwest Booksellers Association, where he was talking to booksellers about It's Christmas, David! . We sat next to each other and signed 100 copies of our respective books. I was excited to meet him because years ago, when Teen was a young Kid, she drew her own book, No Grandma, that was, shall we say, heavily influenced by Shannon’s No David.

I made a color copy and sent it to him care of his publisher. He wrote back a note with a little drawing that made Kid the hit of many show-and-tells to come.

When I met David at PNBA, I told him this story, thinking he might remember it. But his simple style and charming books have captured the imagination of dozens of kids. He told me he keeps a file full of children’s versions of No David, presumably including Kid’s.

The LA Times ran a nice profile on David. The No David books got their start when his mom gave him a book he had drawn when he was only five.

“Shannon's "David" books were born from a stapled-together, eight-page book he drew at that age, which his mother kept and later showed him as an adult. Shannon now keeps that comic in a cardboard mailing envelope marked simply, "David orig. book," ... Inside this primitive tome of pen-and-ink drawings on recycled yellow paper are pictures of David being spanked with knives and standing on a chair reaching for a box of Cocoa Krispies. The only text is "no" and "David" — the only two words Shannon knew how to spell at the time, he said. The boy is drawn much like Shannon draws him today: in an art naive style with a round head and angled eyebrows.

Read more about David Shannon here.

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