“People used to assume that I had kids long before I did,” he tells NPR’s Kelly McEvers. He eventually had children of his own, but that didn’t change his writing process the way one might have expected.

“When my wife was pregnant with our first child people would say, ‘Oh now you’re going to have so many more ideas,’ ” he recalls. “And it didn’t really happen. I think some of the greats in this field were not parents. I think it probably comes from some other place deep inside. I don’t think you have to have children to write for them.”

Kevin Henkes