This is my journey in creating concepts, writing, illustrating, finding a literary agent, and becoming a published children's book author and illustrator for the picture book genre.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

That grant I keep referencing...

well, hooray for me! The grant that I am applying for was set back. No applications accepted until next month. What does this mean? Well, more time to fine tune the work! I haven't started the dummy book yet. Andy is still receiving some revisions and still tooting the same etiquette platform. An advantage to children's illustrations is that all forms of art mediums are acceptable. I am still drawn to the vibrancy of water colors and pastels. Two other grants are opening their doors in May. One is for illustration and the other is for writing. These will offer a waived conference fee for the Missouri conference. First, I shall finish applying for this grant and cross all digits; fingers and toes. Then, I shall perhaps pursue one of these two options. :) Happy writing and always aspiring.

Monday, February 18, 2013

To the future!

I am revising my original manuscript in hopes to make it easier to illustrate. I want the voice to be open, fun, and convey basic child etiquette. Cross your fingers. Less than a month to submit it for the grant. Always creating.  Still aspiring. 

Andy the Ant likes to walk around.
He loves to explore the meadow ground.
Oh no, you are going the wrong way...
This is not the place for you to play.
Poor Andy is lost and cannot find his way.
Andy sees a green frog he knows by a rock near by.
“Can this friend help me? I think I’ll say hi.”
A greeting is important and a nice thing, too.
So he asks, “Excuse me, sir, how do you do?
My name is Andy. I am lost, sad, and blue.
Where is my home? 
Dear frog, what do I do?"
"Listen up, little ant." stated the green frog. "
Look up at me and hear what I say.
I will help you find your way."
Ant and Frog search for Andy's home.
by the water, they find a gnome.
"Good day, sir  Gnome," Andy begins kindly.
"My name is Andy and this is Green. How do you do?"
The grumpy gnome responds not so sprightly.
"What can i do for you, little Andy?" 
grumble. grumble. bumble. grumble....

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

I feel like I need to write and may be over thinking it. It shouldn't be this difficult, right?

Here is my first book that I am trying to make a bit more appealing. I need to write about what I am passionate about. That subject would be about manners. Children learn from what they read, hear, and see. As I explore the libraries and selections for children, I am realizing that there are a plethora of materials available. For me, I think I need to view it as an opportunity to contribute and not fear the competition to be better than what is out there. I need to be true to my voice. I am not about humor or heroes verses the foe.
I really want to write about the Krumpy. He is a thorn in my side currenty. I hope if I keep writing perhaps his story will develop. My flaw? Well, I over think things. I am just a bit stumped as to making the story come together.
As for Andy, Andy is being reworked to be a wee bit shorter. It may a bit wordy for a kids' book, but I have seen wordier for sure. :) The criticism that I received that sticks out most is that my story doesn't allow for illustration. Well, challenge accepted. :) For now, I will leave you with this.....

Andy the Ant walks around.
His home is underground.
 He is small and strong
And marches all wrong.
One day, he goes astray
And now must find his way.
Across the pond, his journey will go.
A leaf is there to carry him so.
On the water, he must float along.
His home is on the bank of the pond.
 His home is there, far away.
Will he make it home today?

I am giving Andy a new look. I want my little ant to embody sweet and innocence. What do you think? This is a rough draft. i am going to try and make a title page tonight or tomorrow.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Another illustration...

Today is a great day to post another painting that I have done. I am finding a voice. Alright, well I think I am. I love color. I find peace in the colors I use. When visiting the library, my children and I are entertained by the comedic aspects of the children's books, but what about the art? It isn't as colorful as I remember. There was this one book series about animals that I would always order. The illustrated pages were full of color and illustration. I was mesmerized.  There is this Bothers Grimm book that won the illustration award in 2011. Every inch of the page is filled with color. In a future book that I produce, I want it to be smothered in color and illustration. Although stories compose the magic, I believe the illustration brings that magic to reality in the eyes of a child.

Here is another example of my Krumpy. I am still trying to get the voice correct. I want his face to convey whimsy and magic. This little guy speaks to me. Not literally, of course. That would be straight jacket crazy. :)
I am trying different brush techniques and facial expressions. Little details are subtly changed so I can compare and contrast with the others. My plan is to take a poll and find out which face resonates most with you. This illustration here was one that I started to sketch out and looked like a hot, I let the paint brush do the talking. This piece isn't finished, but it is on its way. I think it will receive some more work tomorrow!