A Start of Good Things…
Thank you for joining me for my very first monthly newsletter. This is something I’ve wanted to start a long time ago and always put aside because I am busy with other things.
I want to have a newsletter for keeping friends and fans updated because I don’t really enjoy social media anymore. It seems more like shouting into a public park and hoping your friends are out there and can hear you. I would rather be able to know whatever I want to say actually gets to the people with whom I want to share it, not at the whim of the algorithm. So, if you are reading this, thank you for wanting to hear from me (and if this isn’t something you are interested in, feel free to unsubscribe at the bottom. I won’t cry… much.).
Since this is the first newsletter, I’d like to share a bit of my journey to this point. I am a 38-year-old woman. Married, and I have two biological kids, and we are also a foster family. So far we have only fostered one child, but it was a wonderful gift of time when we were able to love on her. We will welcome more kids to our home in the future.
My writing journey began in earnest nine years ago, as I started writing a novel. I was expecting a baby, so why not start writing? I don’t know what prompted me to start, but once I got going, I loved writing again. I had always enjoyed writing creatively, but never had tried to write a whole book. It was an adventure, and took me several years to finish, as well as navigating motherhood for the first time. It gave me the bug to write. In the process of trying to figure out what to do after you write a book, I found The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI).
SCBWI taught me so much over the next few years about the whole book process. During this time I wrote some picture book manuscripts as well and realized how much I love picture books. I also realized along the way that the way I write manuscripts for picture books is sparse in wording, and my stories needed the pictures to work, so I decided to try my hand at illustration as well.
I had my degree in an art related field: graphic design, so I knew the art and design fundamentals, but I hadn’t drawn pictures on a daily basis since college. I rediscovered how fun and enjoyable drawing is, and also realized I didn’t know much about telling a story through my pictures, or carrying a story through a series or images. I enrolled in the Society of Visual Storytellers (SVS) class: Picture Book Pro.
It was amazing. I learned a ton. I also met some other artist/storytellers from all over the world. I even started a weekly critique group with some of them, which has been phenomenal in helping my illustration storytelling continue to grow.
So, here I am today. I have a nearly finished dummy that will soon be going out into the world of publishing agents, trying to find my spot in the world of children’s books.
Thank you for sharing my journey with me, and I will keep you updated about my progress and what I’m working on as the journey continues!
Books I’m reading and recommending (for every age!):
Grownup: The Last Bookshop in London by Madeline Martin
Middle Grade: Sweep: The Story of a Girl and Her Monster by Jonathan Auxier
Picture Book: Julie Andrews’ Collection of Poems, Songs, and Lullabies by Julie Andrews, Emma Walton Hamilton, and Jim McMullan (Illustrator)
Until next time,