The inspiration for my children’s picture book Pep, Polish & Paint came one starry night as I was walking home from work. I looked up at the stars in the night sky and imagined what would happen if one of those stars just went out. Who or what would be around in space to help a star that had lost its shine? Spaceships, of course! And how could spaceships help a sun to regain its shine? By giving it a pep-me-up drink or by polishing it or painting it, I thought. And so the story and the title were born. That was more than 15 years ago. Since then, I have time and again thought of the main character in my book (Sammy the sun) and have drawn inspiration from him and his decision to take action in order to transform the story from a collection of handwritten lines into a fully illustrated, published book and make my goal a reality.
Children may think, perhaps, that there is little they can do in a world of adults. But that is far from the case. There are numerous stories about children making a difference because they made a decision and took some action – which is what we all need to do if we wish to take responsibility for our lives. My hope is that those who read this story, whether young or old, will be inspired to take some action to realise a goal that is close to their hearts. And perhaps – when they in future look up at the night sky – they’ll think of Sammy the sun and how making a decision and taking action changed the course of his life and perhaps their lives as well.