Ever been so tired you couldn’t sleep? It’s a paradox. A very frustrating one, and it makes you grumpy. Maybe enough coffee will help, but some days, there’s not enough coffee.
My muse has been on vacation. It’s not, I said just recently in talking about this, that I have writer’s block. It’s simply that my fiction brain isn’t there. It hasn’t been since the last time I got really sick, back in November. I’ve been muddling along, making sure I write something for the weekly prompts, but even my art is faltering now that I’m not working on a project and don’t have a clear direction. I mean, I have my new year’s resolution to get better at drawing people?
Which meant that yesterday I drew an acorn. Because no can brain, and botanical illustration I can do in that state.
What I’m working on as a publisher, though! That’s the fun part. Sanderley Studios is proud to announce their first project in the new year…
An illustrated book of poetry for children who aren’t made of sugar and spice…
After doing The Cute Moose last year, I knew I wanted to make more children’s books. What I hadn’t expected is that I’d have people who would want to work with me, and my art, to make that happen. Jimmie’s poetry and flash fiction had already been something I was looking forward to, and his happy personality with ever-ready words of encouragement made him an ideal collaborator. We had so much fun with this book, and now it’s becoming very real.
We are using Bundle Rabbit to handle the accounting – the one thing I do not want to have to take on is managing royalties! – and they are good folks, if you haven’t yet encountered them. I reached out asking if this was something they could do, a picture book we want out in ebook and print format, and they got back very quickly with an enthusiastic affirmative. With that out of the way, I’ve been working up the cover. The manuscript will be submitted to publish this weekend, if all goes to plan. And it (mostly) did! You can preorder the One Hungry Werewolf now, or wait for paper arriving on Jan 31.
Can you tell I was having too much fun with illustrations for this book? We kept it all black and white interior to keep costs down, both for us and for the readers. It’s a full letter size page, too, taking off from a tip in the comments here at Mad Genius Club that the size comes with reduced cost – plus, this book could be used to color in. Some of the illustrations would lend themselves nicely to that method of interacting with a picture book.
I was paying loving homage to Charles Addams and Edward Gorey with my illustrations. There’s no violence on the page, but this book is for the child who thinks the monster under the bed would be a superior playmate. It’s a little creepy, a little cute, and we hope a lot of people like it.
If you’d like a preview of the poetry, check out Jimmie’s Six Spooky Stanzas, which appear alongside my illustrations for each stanza in the book, following the titular poem. I think once you do, you’ll know where the illustration below fits into the book!