"Where the Wild Things Are" was supposed to be called "Where the Wild Horses Are" but Maurice Sendak couldn't draw horses. He could draw "Things".
His drawings of the "wild things" are based on his aunts and uncles. He thought their teeth and noses were terrifying. "And they'd pick you up and hug you and kiss you, 'Aggghh. Oh, we could eat you up.' And we know they would eat anything, anything. And so, they're the wild things."
"I often went to bed without supper cause I hated my mother's cooking. So, to go to bed without supper was not a torture to me. If she was gonna hurt me, she'd make me eat. That's true, too."
"And so, I hid inside this modest form called the children's book and expressed myself entirely.I wasn't gonna paint. And I wasn't gonna do ostentatious drawings. I wasn't gonna have gallery pictures. I was gonna hide somewhere where nobody would find me and express myself entirely."
He wrote and/or illustrated over 100 children's books. He died in May 2012.