In December, we named This Is Not My Hat one of the 10 Great Kids Books of 2012. So it came as no surprise to us when author/illustrator Jon Klassen’s witty picture book (and the follow-up to 2011’s excellent I Want My Hat Back) took home the Caldecott Medal at this year’s ALA Midwinter Meeting. Klassen, on the other hand, was shocked. “You don’t really know if you have a shot,” he told EW today. “It’s such a prestigious award that the idea of winning one is pretty easy to put out of your head.” Check out our full interview with the author/illustrator below for more on his upcoming projects, a third Hat book, and why he thinks he’s going to get hit by a bus.
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: How did you find out that you’d won?
JON KLASSEN: They called early in the morning.
“Pretty early. I’ve heard I got a bit of a break. Normally they call at 6 in the morning. I was catching a plane that morning to San Jose and the cabbie called first and said he was downstairs. Then after he hung up the phone, [the ALA called]. You don’t really expect a call. You try and put it out of your head. You know what’s going on, but you’re not like, ‘I’m going to sit by the phone and wait for this thing.’ You’re just going to break your own heart. But they called as I was putting the phone down and said, ‘You’ve won the Golden Caldecott for this book you did.’ I couldn’t believe it. I was sort of half awake and this cab was downstairs and I was all flustered. What they do is, the whole committee around the table, they have you on speaker and you want to say something meaningful.” READ FULL STORY