I’m a writer. I live and work in Leuven. I write books for kids and youngsters. Being a writer and narrator, I’m a regular guest at libraries and schools. I also work on theater pieces on a regular basis.
How? It’s not easy becoming a writer like me. You have to follow specific trainings to become one: First woodwork, then special youth welfare work and finally remedial education.
After that you have to do a series of jobs: lumberjack, educator, zorro, counselor, box packager, astronaut, cleaner, exaggerator, screenwriter … And only then, after all that, you can become a writer.
About what? About Elvis and grandpa, about Lena or about the Findling. About kissing and riding your bike. About wolves and cowboys, about bandits and babies, about doctors and dummies, about farts and facts. In short, I write picture books, books for beginner readers, recreational books and sometimes also informative books. Finally I sometimes make up short stories for magazines.
Since when? My first book came out in 2000. I wrote more than 80 books ever since. If you make a stack out of all those books and you climb on top of it and stand on your toes you can almost see Paris.
Awards & more: Some of the books were nominated for all kinds of awards. Wow, what a wolf won the award of the children’s jury (in Flanders, Belgium), Met opa op de fiets was awarded the feather of the month. Elvis de Draak (en de jacht op Liru) was chosen as best story book.
Aheoeoeoeoeoew & smaksmak: From book to theater. The romantic story of Antoon & Mirabella and the exiting Wow, what wolf were adapted for the theater. Met opa op de fiets & Met opa in de sneeuw were turned into animations for television. The story of the book De laatste dag was adapted for the short movie Heen en Weer dag.
Translations: If you search really hard and you know some other languages, you will find my books in bookstores from America to South-Korea.
What do I like the best? I like writing love letters the best, but is hard to become rich and famous by doing that. That’s why I write books for children and youngsters. Sometimes it’s a picture book; sometimes it’s a book for everyone over 10 or a thriller for over 12. And after that I might start on the text for the theater.
Help? I’m often asked what you have to know or what you have to be able to do to become a writer. First of all, a good writer has to be curious. You should not be afraid of bears or wolves or wet kisses. You have to love coffee and chocolate. You have to persevere and enjoy working on your own. You have to be able to listen (and not talk). Or ask the right questions. You should love reading and you should be tough. You should be able to hold your breath for at least 30 seconds and you should be able to walk with your hands on your back. It’s also important to love languages and stories.
Illustrators: Some stories need pictures and some pictures need stories. That’s why I work with illustrators. These are some of them: Marja Meijer, Tom Schoonooghe, Jan De Kinder, Bart Schoofs, Lieve Claes, Greet Bosschaert, Frank Daenen, Pauline Oud, …
My hobbies: Readwalking. Theatertravel, Chocolateracing. Runstories. Exhibitcake. Forestsoccer. Andsomuchmore.