The Best Maurice Sendak quotes

Maurice Sendak quotes thumbnail

Maurice Sendak is a children’s book author who has sold over 83 million copies worldwide. He has written and illustrated many popular books including Where the Wild Things Are. His books have been translated into more than 30 languages, with his most famous being sung in Japanese. Maurice was born on June 10, 1928 and passed away on May 8th 2012 at the age of 83.

Here are the most inspiring statements from Maurice Sendak.

We are glad to present you the strongest Books, Parent, Life, Wild, Childrenhood, Children quotes from Maurice Sendak, and much more.


About Maurice Sendak

birth of the author

June 10, 1928

death of the author

May 8, 2012

occupation of the author

Artist, Illustrator, Writer

country of the author


college of the author

Alma Mater:
Art Students League Of New York

date of the author


genre of the author

Children’s Literature, Picture Books

award of the author

Notable Works:
Kenny’s Window, Where The Wild Things Are, In The Night Kitchen, Seven Little Monsters, Outside Over There And More.


Let the wild rumpus start! — Maurice Sendak

I wanted my wild things to be frightening. — Maurice Sendak

Inside all of us is… hope. Inside all of us is… fear. Inside all of us is… adventure. Inside all of us is a wild thing. — Maurice Sendak

And Max, the king of all wild things, was lonely and wanted to be where someone loved him best of all. — Maurice Sendak

let the wild rumpus start Maurice Sendak quote

And now,’ cried Max, ‘let the wild rumpus start! — Maurice Sendak

And the wild things roared their terrible roars and gnashed their terrible teeth and rolled their terrible eyes and showed their terrible claws. — Maurice Sendak

I’m totally crazy, I know that. — Maurice Sendak


I don’t know how to write a children’s book. — Maurice Sendak

I hate those e–books. They can not be the future… they may well be… I will be dead. — Maurice Sendak

i don t know how to write a children s book Maurice Sendak quote

I wanted to be acknowledged as an artist, not just some kiddie–book artist. — Maurice Sendak

There’s so much more to a book than just the reading. — Maurice Sendak

I do not remember any proper children’s books in my childhood. I was not exposed to them. — Maurice Sendak

I write books that seem more suitable for children, and that’s OK with me. They are a better audience and tougher critics. Kids tell you what they think, not what they think they should think. — Maurice Sendak

You cannot write for children They’re much too complicated. You can only write books that are of interest to them. — Maurice Sendak

i hate those e books they can not be the future they may well be i will be dead Maurice Sendak quote

I had been reading a fabulous book [The Man Verdi, by Frank Walker] about [Giuseppe] Verdi, whom I adore. — Maurice Sendak

Kids books Grownup books That’s just marketing. Books are books. — Maurice Sendak

A book is really like a lover. It arranges itself in your life in a way that is beautiful. — Maurice Sendak

I never set out to write books for children. I don’t have a feeling that I’m gonna save children or my life is devoted. — Maurice Sendak

There are certain pieces of music that are always attached to certain books. — Maurice Sendak

i wanted to be acknowledged as an artist not just some kiddie book artist Maurice Sendak quote

I think there is something barbaric in children, and it’s missing in lots of books for them because we don’t like to think of it. We want them to be happy [but] childhood is a very tough time. — Maurice Sendak

I have to accept my role. I will never kill myself like Vincent Van Gogh. Nor will I paint beautiful water lilies like Monet. I can’t do that. I’m in the idiot role of being a kiddie book person. — Maurice Sendak

Bumble–ardy looks like a happy book. That’s the funniest thing about it. But this was survival. I was working very hard to survive. — Maurice Sendak

I hate [ebooks]. It’s like making believe there’s another kind of sex. There isn’t another kind of sex. There isn’t another kind of book! A book is a book is a book. — Maurice Sendak

I never spent less than two years on the text of one of my picture books, even though each of them is approximately 380 words long. Only when the text is finished … do I begin the pictures. — Maurice Sendak

there s so much more to a book than just the reading Maurice Sendak quote


There must be more to life than having everything! — Maurice Sendak

I know that if there’s a purpose for life, it was for me to hear Mozart. — Maurice Sendak

My life in Brooklyn was in constant danger because of my bad health. — Maurice Sendak

Kids lead a very private life. — Maurice Sendak

I wish you all good things. Live your life, live your life, live your life. — Maurice Sendak

there must be more to life than having everything Maurice Sendak quote

Truthfullness to life–both fantasy life and factual life–is the basis of all great art. — Maurice Sendak

If children are different from us, they are more spontaneous. Grown–up lives have become overlaid with dross. — Maurice Sendak

I never can satisfy some need in me to achieve something of incredible hight. For my sake. It puzzles me deeply. And it sours my life. So there is a permanent dissatisfaction. — Maurice Sendak

Life has only gotten better personally for me as I’ve gotten older. I mean, being young was such a gross waste of time. I was just such a miserable, miserable person. — Maurice Sendak

That’s what art is. You don’t make up stories. You live your life. — Maurice Sendak

i know that if there s a purpose for life it was for me to hear mozart Maurice Sendak quote

When Mozart is playing in my room, I am in conjunction with something I can’t explain… I don’t need to. I know that if there’s a purpose for life, it was for me to hear Mozart. — Maurice Sendak

I feel it in me like a woman having a baby, all that life churning inside me. I feel it every day; it moves, stretches, yawns. It’s getting ready to be born. It knows exactly what it is. — Maurice Sendak

I don’t believe in an afterlife but I still fully expect to see my brother again. — Maurice Sendak


All I wanted was to be straight so my parents could be happy. They never, never, never knew. — Maurice Sendak

Kids never get pissed at their parents. Unheard of. — Maurice Sendak

kids never get pissed at their parents unheard of Maurice Sendak quote

As a kid, all I thought about was death. But you can’t tell your parents that. — Maurice Sendak

Redundant Thematics

In Maurice Sendak Statements


I think people should be given a test much like driver’s tests as to whether they’re capable of being parents! — Maurice Sendak

That always seemed to be the most critical test that a child was confronted with–loss of parents, loss of direction, loss of love. Can you live without a mother and a father? — Maurice Sendak

We’re supposed to be civilized. We’re supposed to go to work every day. We’re supposed to be nice to our friends and send Christmas cards to our parents. — Maurice Sendak


Childhood is a tricky business. Usually something goes wrong. — Maurice Sendak

childhood is a tricky business usually something goes wrong Maurice Sendak quote

I had a brother who was my savior, made my childhood bearable. — Maurice Sendak

Why is my needle stuck in childhood? I don’t know why. I guess it’s because that’s where my heart is. — Maurice Sendak

William Blake really is important, my cornerstone. Nobody ever told me before he did that childhood was such a damned serious business. — Maurice Sendak

Childhood is cannibals and psychotics vomiting in your mouth! — Maurice Sendak

I remember my own childhood vividly…I knew terrible things. But I knew I mustn’t let adults know I knew. It would scare them — Maurice Sendak

i had a brother who was my savior made my childhood bearable Maurice Sendak quote

The magic of childhood is the strangeness of childhood–the uniqueness that makes us see things that other people don’t see. — Maurice Sendak


I don’t write for children. I write, and somebody says, ‘That’s for children.’ — Maurice Sendak

We’ve educated children to think spontaneity is inappropriate. — Maurice Sendak

There’s something in this country that is so opposed to understanding the complexity of children. — Maurice Sendak

I don’t believe in things literally for children. That’s a reduction. — Maurice Sendak

i don t write for children i write and somebody says that s for children Maurice Sendak quote

How do you write for children? I really have never figured that out. So I decided to just ignore it — Maurice Sendak

I adored Mickey Mouse when I was a child. He was the emblem of happiness and funniness. — Maurice Sendak

Bumble–ardy is a very wicked little child as far as I’m concerned. He’s not to be trusted. — Maurice Sendak

And it is through fantasy that children achieve catharsis. It is the best means they have for taming Wild Things. — Maurice Sendak

To be a healthy person, you have to be sympathetic to the child you once were and maintain the continuity between you as a child and you as an adult. — Maurice Sendak

we ve educated children to think spontaneity is inappropriate Maurice Sendak quote

Do parents sit down and tell their kids everything? I don’t know. I don’t know. I’ve convinced myself–I hope I’m right–that children despair of you if you don’t tell them the truth. — Maurice Sendak

Children surviving childhood is my obsessive theme and my life’s concern. — Maurice Sendak

Children are the best living audience in the world because they are so thoroug hly honest. — Maurice Sendak

I refuse to lie to children. I refuse to cater to the bullshit of innocence. — Maurice Sendak

I only have one subject. The question I am obsessed with is: How do children survive? — Maurice Sendak

i don t believe in things literally for children that s a reduction Maurice Sendak quote

I was a very sickly child. My parents were immigrants. They were not decorous. They were not discreet. They always thought I was gonna die. — Maurice Sendak

When you hide another story in a story, that’s the story I am telling the children. — Maurice Sendak

I mean, being a child was being a child, was being a creature without power, without pocket money, without escape routes of any kind. So I didn’t want to be a child. — Maurice Sendak

Mothers and children are human beings, and they will sometimes do the wrong thing. — Maurice Sendak

In plain terms, a child is a complicated creature who can drive you crazy. There’s a cruelty to childhood, there’s an anger. — Maurice Sendak

i adored mickey mouse when i was a child he was the emblem of happiness and funniness Maurice Sendak quote

Parents shouldn’t assume children are made out of sugar candy and will break and collapse instantly. Kids don’t. We do. — Maurice Sendak

Children do live in fantasy and reality; they move back and forth very easily in a way we no longer remember how to do. — Maurice Sendak

I want to write something so simple, so short and so silly… and I want it to be for my brother. — Maurice Sendak

Kids tell you what they think, not what they think they should think. — Maurice Sendak