KITTERY, Maine — Ryan Higgins loves writing about a grumpy old Maine bear named Bruce, one his own imagination concocted several years ago. More recently he likes irritating his fictional old bear with a cheerful bunny who has endless energy named Ruth Bunny Ginsberg.
"She's just the perfect character to play off of Bruce's grumpiness," explains Higgins.
In the award-winning author and illustrator's latest children's book, Higgins has paired the unlikely friends of Bruce and Ruth to explore the scents of spring in the fictional Maine town of Soggy Hollow. An odd topic for Higgins to land on because he has never been able to smell.
When he was younger, it took Higgins several years to convince his family that he has no sense of smell. Higgins' wife regularly tries to describe smells for him which he admits is very sweet if not effective. But there are perks to no sense of smell, one being his familial duty of cleaning the litter box is a little less unpleasant. And it made his latest 'Little Bruce Book' even that much more fun to write because he can only imagine what for instance a wet moose smells like.
Higgins lives in Kittery, Maine with his wife and three adorable children. He works from a small converted shed in his backyard, his studio, dreaming up ideas and then writing and illustrating children's books. His most popular are his Bruce Bear series.