Wrapping Up a Project

But how do you know when you are finished with an illustrated project, especially when the deadline is still out there?

Easy-reader comic book! Goldilocks, revisited.

I decided to try writing and illustrating a graphic novel based on an early reader series I wrote called Sir Pants-a-Lot and Squire Mousekins. In the first adventure, the brave knight and his loyal squire rescue Goldilocks from the three bears. And, unlike the traditional story, they encourage the naughty girl to make amends for…

As you sew, so shall you rip: How I’m spending my Pandemic Staycation

Lately I’ve been bombarding Facebook with a new craft endeavor: patchwork. I’ve mistakenly been calling it quilting, which is the ultimate goal, maybe, but for now, I’ve been learning how to piece together different shapes of fabric bits. And I’ve been re-learning how to sew. So, a little sewing history: In my senior year of…

Changing with the times – how I stayed published.

This piece is from the May 2006 issue of our local electrical coop’s Ruralite Magazine. I interviewed myself actually, and was very easy to talk to. I also took the photos, hence the cut off head. The gist of the interview was how we creative types struggle in our careers. Getting published doesn’t mean we’ll…

BUG! Publishing News

It began last October with a semi-desire to learn how to do scratchboard while tinkering with a story idea. As usual, my brain firmly resisted this new task that sounded messy, time consuming and difficult to learn. So, after buying all the materials and watching a few tutorials, I tried creating the scratchboard effect using…

Don’t over-pluck your picture book

If you write picture books, you know it’s a lot easier to tell your story in more words than probably anyone wants to publish. It used to be that 1,000-1,200 words was the limit. Now, it’s more like 700. Or even shorter! But that does not mean you cut all but the first 700 words…

Can you handle the truth?

In the world of publishing we (hopefully) agonize over a project until it is perfect and present something we believe in our hearts is an incredibly awesome work of art. So it’s never any fun when our projects are rejected by an agent or publisher. In 30+ years of publishing children’s books, here’s my take…

Are You Done Yet?

Wow, it’s been thirty years since my first children’s book contract. So… what have I learned in thirty years? I’ve learned that people often don’t respect or understand just how long it can take to accomplish a task that might appear, to the one not doing it, to be easy. I think everyone has experienced…

Evolving Stories

How does a story evolve? aka Where do you get your ideas? We’ve heard lots of answers, and they all sound pretty convincing. However I think the honest answer from most authors and illustrators (and perhaps the other creative sorts) is that we really have no idea where ideas come from. For me, the only…

More about bats.

I worked with the third spread for my book idea about opposites and this is how far I got. Lots of tweaking yet to go, but it’s so fun to carve out some time to illustrate. Now it’s time to get back to writing. I’ve put one client off for three weeks, so I better…