“18 Top Illustrators Tell Us Their Biggest Ideas on How to be Successful” – Phillip Dennis, Red Lemon Club
Looking to those who have successfully found their way to where we are currently trying to navigate can provide an invaluable guide to avoiding the steep drops and dead ends that often come up to blindside us.
There is never one singular route or clearly-etched map to carving out a fulfilling career as a successful creative professional. With every additional artist you approach, words of wisdom become more complex, nuanced, and unexpected.
By putting together a series of thoughts and ideas from a group of top illustrators, we can see a wide range of approaches in one place, and we hope it inspires you.
We asked 18 currently active illustrators:
Note from Joan: Please click on the link below to find the rest of this great story with illustrations, too.
“Spivey’s Web, a Christmas Story: Interview with Author, Sandra Warren” by Joan Y. Edwards
Today, it is an honor to interview Sandra Warren, author of Spivey’s Web. Thanks for coming today, Sandra. I want to hear all about SPIVEY’S WEB, a picture book that’s out now that you had in your head for 15+ years!
I’m so glad to be here.
1.Tell us about Spivey’s Web.
I am very excited that Spivey’s Web is out now since it has a Christian twist at the end. It’s about a spider who wants to spin a web of her own design, not the expected web for a barn spider. After being ridiculed for her efforts, she moves to a window high in the loft and when the Star of David shines through, it sprinkles stars, like a disco ball, around a manger and calms a very special baby. Although the baby is not named, you can tell by the illustration that it’s the baby Jesus. I love the last line….My web didn’t catch flies. It caught the light!
Spivey’s web is more than a Christmas story, however. It’s also about having the courage to follow your heart and do what makes you happy even when everyone around says it can’t be done or it’s never been done like that. From Spivey we learn to never give up.
Writers take heed. When agents and editors say, no, no, sorry no, we have to keep at it and never give up because if we do, we’ll never know how close we came and we’ll never know what amazing things might come from our creative, imaginative minds. We all need Spivey’s courage to spin a web of our own design.
2. Did you submit Spivey’s Web to traditional publishers? Christian markets?
Sandra: I tried for years to get Spivey’s Web traditionally published, but it was too secular for the Christian market and too Christian for the secular market. A major agent loved it until she got to the end and realized it was a holiday/Christian theme. She said she doesn’t do holiday books. Although I was still holding out for a traditional publisher, everything changed when I met an amazing artist.
3. Marvelous illustrations. Who is the illustrator?
Sandra: SusanFitzgerald, one of our part-time neighbors at Hidden Lake is a FINE artist who approached me asking if I’d LET her illustrate a manuscript of mine. I was floored because she’s an amazing artist who exhibits full-time in a gallery in Jacksonville. Her concept of Spivey and all her illustrations are fabulous in my opinion.
4. Did you encounter any problems with the formatting of the book?
Sandra: Oh my, yes!One problem we had that took us almost a day to figure out was that we were trying to put a landscape/horizontal illustration into a square template. A landscape picture book template was not offered by the company we chose. We also had trouble balancing the required minimum 300 dpi of each illustration for printing. It’s tricky to send illustrations through email without losing dpi. Now we know how to do it. Our original vision was to have a horizontal format with illustrations that bled off the page–flowed to the very edges. But because of issues with the horizontal formatting of the original artwork, we had to compensate by reducing the size of each illustration allowing for a border or frame around each.
Here are suggestions if you’re self-publishing a book:
Make sure you download the publisher’s PDF Specification Guide from CreateSpace or other publisher and read it before beginning to make sure they print books in the size and format you want.
Don’t be afraid to contact Support if you have any questions. The folks at CreateSpace are very helpful!
Thanks for being a guest on my blog, Sandra. Thank you for offering a giveaway, too.
Winners of the Giveaway:
Between December 10th and midnight yesterday, December 21, 2017, the following six people left a comment on this blog post for a chance to win a free autographed copy of “Spivey’s Web:” 1. Sarah Maury Swan 2. Gretchen Griffith 3. Dr. Bob Rich 4. Linda Andersen Gutheil 5. Lisa Anne Cullen 6. Barbara Bockman
Thank you to all those who left a comment! You make my blog sparkle with excitement. Random.org chose number 4 and number 1 for the two winners: Therefore, Sarah Maury Swan and Linda Andersen are the winners. I will send you Sandra Warren’s email address so you can email her your snail mail address so she can send your prize – an autographed copy of the beautiful picture book, “Spivey’sWeb.” Congratulations! Yippee!
“Patron Saints of Artists: St. Catherine of Bologna and St. Luke” by Joan Y. Edwards
Sometimes you need to call in for reinforcements to believe more in yourself and your abilities to do what you believe God wants you to do in life. Talking with God and asking him for help is a great plan. Also, looking for others in the present time or from the past to discover how they coped with life may help inspire you to keep on going. here’s a prayer I found that I thought you would enjoy.
Bless the creators, O God of creation, who by their gifts make the world a more joyful and beautiful realm. Through their labors they teach us to see more clearly the truth around us. In their inspiration they call forth wonder and awe in our own living. In their hope and vision they remind us that life is holy. Bless all who create in your image, O God of creation. Pour your Spirit upon them that their hearts may sing and their works be fulfilling. Amen.
In case you are like me and in need of a little encouragement in your artistic skills, I discovered the patron saints of artists for you to study and gain inspiration from their lives and experience.
St. Catherine of Bologna – Feast Day March 9th Abbess & Painter (1413-1463) Catherine was born in Bologna, Italy. She dabbled in writing, poetry, dancing, and Latin studies, but her forte was painting. She is a patron saint of painters and those who suffer from doubt. In 1432 together with other young women of Ferrara, she founded a monastery of the Order of Poor Clares founded bySt. Francis of Assisi and St. Clare of Assisi.
St. Luke, the Evangelist – Feast Day October 18th
The Roman Catholic Church and other major denominations venerate him as Saint Luke the Evangelist and as a patron saint of artists, physicians, surgeons, students and butchers. He wrote one of the four Gospels. Saint Luke painted a picture of Mary, the Mother of Jesus.
Catholic Culture.org says that the flying ox is a symbol of St. Luke the Evangelist, anticipated by Ezekiel. The ox, recognized as the animal of sacrifice, applies to St. Luke because his Gospel emphasizes the atonement made by Christ’s sacrifice of himself on the Cross.
Thank you for reading my blog. You honor me by being here. Look over the blog posts listed to the right. You might find another post to interest you. Please leave a comment to tell me an artist who inspires you.
Never Give Up Live with Enthusiasm Celebrate Each Step You Take
Please check out my books: Flip Flap Floodle, Will this little duck’s song save him from Mr. Fox? Joan’s Elder Care Guide published by 4RV Publishing. A great gift for a friend who is caring for a parent, spouse, or other loved one.
“How to Draw in Two-Point Perspective” by Joan Y. Edwards
Two-point perspective has two vanishing point lines heading out from one particular corner spot in an image. Usually at the top and bottom of a vertical line that juts out.
I found several pictures on Pixabay that might help you understand a little better about it. If a building juts out towards you, with lines going out from it in two other directions, it probably is in two-point perspective.
Also, if you’re looking at a room, where you can only see one corner of a room in the distance and two walls jutting at an angle from it, it probably is a two-point perspective.
Here are five images to help you understand.
Image Examples of Two-Point Perspective:
Steps to Drawing a Building in Two-Point Perspective
Draw your horizon line straight across the page.
Draw two points about a half-inch from the edge of the paper: one on the left side of the horizon line and another on the right side of the horizon line. These are your two vanishing points. All diagonal lines will go through one of these points. I discovered that if I make each dot an X then, it was easier to find and easier to line up with it.
Draw the middle line that juts out towards you.
Draw a line from top of the jut line to the left vanishing point.
Draw a line from the bottom of the jut line to the left vanishing point.
Draw a line from the bottom of the jut line to the right vanishing point.
Draw a line from the bottom of the jut line to the left vanishing point.
Here are two images I drew for you in two-point perspective.
The first is a sketch of a laundry room. This time the jut line is away from you. I hope you can tell what the items are. If you can’t, just write me a little note and ask.
The second illustration is also one of two-point perspective. This time the jut line is facing you. I drew a part of a city, I only drew two buildings so that I wouldn’t cover up the original two vanishing points. I made the image in the blog especially big, so that you might be able to see the red X’s for the vanishing points.
I hope that you enjoyed reading my blog. I hope you’ll try doing two-point perspective or draw for the adventure of doing it. Just to think that I started out with a horizon line and 2 vanishing points on each end. Simply amazing to me. One of the reasons, I’ve been working on perspective is so I’ll be able to make the illustrations better for my chapter book, Larry, the Terrifying Turkey.
I guess you noticed that sometimes one or both of the vanishing points can act like the single vanishing point. Things tend to get smaller in the distance. On city streets, you might need more than two points of perspective.
I hope you will leave me a note. I love hearing from the people who read my blog. I’d be honored if you would share it with others on Facebook, Twitter, or email.
“Plant Success Seeds for Your Next Conference Now” by Joan Y. Edwards
You have the magical seeds needed for your success. Your inner mojo or magical power is there for you to use 24 hours a day. Look for it. Plant it. Nourish it. To help you grow in confidence, you need to grow in skills and abilities. Plant these seeds for your success at your next conference.
Before the Conference
Believe in you. Activate this belief. BELIEVE IN YOU AND YOUR ABILITIES. That’s the first seed for success. Believe in you. You can do all things necessary for your success.
Set your goals. What skill do you most want to improve? Attend the workshops that will help you improve that skill. I hope that by attending a conference, you’ll learn a new skill or marketing technique that inspires you to reach your goals. You have what it takes for success. You may have to look through different eyes, through a different window to see it.
Visit the web pages of three presenters that interest you. If they have a website, read the about me section. Check out their books at your local library or on Amazon or Barnes and Noble.
If you have specific questions for presenters, write them down on 3×5 cards and ask them at the conference during the workshops. If you don’t get a chance to ask them in person, most handouts or websites give contact information so you can write and ask them later.
Get business cards with your name, address, phone number, email address, website, and blog. Many people put an image and link to their publishedbooks on the back. Use www.VistaPrint.com, www.Gotprint.com, or local print shop. You can also create business cards on your computer.
Writers: Prepare a postcard, business card, bookmark. Use your book titles and pitch blurbs. Get these giveaways printed at www.VistaPrint.com,www.Gotprint.com, or other print shop. You can also create them by hand or with your computer.Illustrators: Prepare a portfolio of 10-20 of your illustrations. Make sure these are the kind of illustrations that you enjoy creating. Prepare a postcard with a sample illustration on it. If you have illustrated a published book, put it on one side and put a different story’s illustration on the back of the postcard. Share with people you meet at the conference. Also send one of your postcards to the art directors for publishing companies represented at the conference.r illustrators. Get bookmarks and or postcards printed at VistaPrint, Got Print, or other print shop. You can also create them by hand or on your computer.
Buy a new spiral notebookwith a bright colorful design, acomposition book with a black and white cover, or a sketch book.This way all of your notes are in one place. You can put it in front of your computer when you get home, and transfer your handwritten notes to your computer. You can add information from handouts by scanning them into your computer, or by typing what you want to remember from the handouts.
Writers: Buy two pens that are dependable and write just the way you like a pen to write. Put them in your pocketbook to take with you. Illustrators: Take a pencil, a ruler, and a white eraser.
Write a pitch for three of your manuscripts. Print out your pitches on 3×5 cards, 4×6 inch cards, or plain 8.5 x 11 printing paper. Carry two copies of each pitch with you to the conference. Put one copy in a folder and the other in your pocketbook. Practice giving your pitch in front of a mirror. Use eye contact. Memorize it. If your pitch is longer than on 3×5 index card, it is too long.
Take comfortable clothing to wear in your favorite colors to keep your spirits high. Take a sweater or blazer, in case the air conditioning is too cool for your inner thermostat.If you’re hot, you can take off the blazer. A good work attire for writers/illustrators is a pair of jeans, a shirt, and a blazer. Linda Rohrbough says that you want the editors to think you just left your computer to meet with them. Be comfortable. If you feel better being all dressed up, dress up. It’s important for you to be comfortable and feel distinguished. Wear comfortable shoes.
Check your laptop, iPad, or iPhone. Charge its battery. Bring your charger to the conference.
Copy the full manuscripts of your Works in Progress and other pertinent information you may need for the conference to a portable drive or flash drive for your laptop or use a cloud data holder. If you use Dropbox, you can put your manuscripts in it and access it from your iPad or iPhone or other electronic devices. It allows you to see your manuscript from all devices. Check it out before you leave home to make sure it works.
Check out the directions to the conference. Find the restaurants that are located close to the conference that serve the kind of food you can eat.
At the Conference
Take notes using your new spiral notebook or composition book or take notes on your laptop or other device.
2.Hand out business cards.
Hand out business cards to everyone with whom you talk. Ask for their businesscards, too. This will give you resources to check after the conference. The more you do this, the more comfortable and natural it will be for you. Make a goal of handing out at least 10-30 cards and getting an equal number in exchange.
3.Talk to people sitting beside you in a workshop.
Do you feel lonely and out of touch with people? Talk to the people who sit beside you in the workshops. Exchange names, email addresses, and business cards with them. Here are possible questions to start your conversation:
“What are you writing?”
“Are you in writing group? Is it online or face-to-face?”
“How do you find time to write (illustrate)?”
“Do you (draw) write best in the morning or at night?”
4. If you meet a publisher or agent, ask them questions about themselves and their projects.
If you happen to meet an agent or editor in the elevator or at lunch, remember he/she is human, like you. Ask one of these questions or one of your own:
“What is your favorite project right now?” “How do you know when a book is right for you?” “What’s your advice for writers(illustrators)?”
5. Writers: Be ready to answer questions about your writing with a pitch.
After your question for an editor or agent, there is a great possibility he/she will ask you, “What kind of writing do you do?” This is a perfect lead in for your pitch. Hold your head high. Look the editor/agent in the eye. Pretend he’s your best friend and tell him your pitch.
Illustrators: Be ready to answer questions about your illustrating. Tell people three things you like to draw and if your like to portray humor, the dark side, nature, etc.
6. Take a short walk for exercise in between sessions.
7. Get plenty of sleep.
8. Eat healthy fruits, vegetables, and proteins. Drink plenty of water. This will keep you alert and focused.
9. Enjoy yourself and learn as much as you can.
10. List twenty things for which you are thankful each morning before you get out of bed.
11. Thank the presenters and the organizers.
12. If you are inspired by a book you hear about or see in the bookstore at the conference, buy it or borrow it from your public library.
After the Conference
1. Sleep, if you’re tired.
Accept yourself and others as you are. Focus on what you want. Be thankful for what you have. Be grateful for where you are. Put the fun back into your writing.
2. After you’ve rested, read and organize your notes from each workshop.
Edit your notes and add information from your handouts. You can scan pertinent information from the handouts into your computer. Write at least three major things you learned from each workshop. You can write down more details if you want.
3. Make a top ten list of things that you learned at the overall conference.
4. Write/Revise Your Writing/Illustrating Goals
After this information soaks into your mind, body, and spirit, write/revise three writing/illustrating goals using the skills and information you learned. (Be patient with yourself.)
5. Writing Skill/Genre Goals
a) Read ten books in your chosen genre and three books on the craft of writing and/or illustrating.
b) Revise your favorite manuscript and submit it to an editor or agent.
c) Revise 3 of your favorite illustrations. Choose one to create a new postcard and send to a prospective publishing company.
6. Marketing Goals
a) Learn a new technology.
b) Submit manuscripts/sample illustrations to different agents and/or editors often.
c) Join or create a critique group.
c) Join my Pub Subbers Yahoo Group, a group to encourage you to submit your manuscript/portfolio often (monthly if possible). To join, write me and tell me why you would like to join at firstname.lastname@example.org. Members postsuccesses, ask other members for help. etc. Members receive automated reminders for the weekly steps to get your work ready for submission.
d) Prepare a book presentation for schools/organization.
e) Prepare a proposal to present a workshop for a writing conference.
f) Prepare a pitch for a manuscript. Go from a page summary and then focus on the words to hook readers. Keep shortening your pitch: 200-100-50-25 words. The ultimate goal is a pitch that is 140 characters long (approximately 25 words) that fits in Twitter. If you have all these different lengths, you will have a pitch to use in your cover letter, proposal, and for the rave blurbs for the back cover of yourbook. Your pitch is the magnetic tool that will entice people to buy your book.
7. Networking Goals
a) Create a website and/or blog.
b) Join a critique group.that focuses on genres you write or illustrate.
c) Give book presentations/workshops for schools and organizations
d) Create an author/illustrator page onFacebookand post news of your publishing journey.
e) Create a TwitterAccount.Tweet your blog posts and your publishing news.
f) Visit the websites of three people who shared a business card with you. Email them. Here are possible points to include in your email. Remind them of how you enjoyed talking with them. Thank them for sharing a resource. Congratulate them on their manuscript, portfolio, or book. Compliment them for being brave if they read their story at open mike. Thank them for giving you a new way to look at a problem.
g) Make a list of your followers on Facebook and Twitter. When you get your book published, they will be helpful in spreading the word about your book. Interact with at least 25 of them on a regular basis.
When I was in college at Western Carolina University, I took a few art courses. In one of them the instructor taught us one point perspective. We went outside and painted different buildings from across the street in one point perspective. My sister, Janet, says she still has those drawings. It’s amazing that watching You-Tube videos can refresh your memory and also give you new techniques to help you improve your drawing of things in perspective. I listed resources I personally liked that teach you one point perspective.
Definition: What is perspective?
Helen South states that “Perspective drawing gives a three-dimensional feeling to a picture. In art, it is a system of representing the way that objects appear to get smaller and closer together the further away they are in the scene.”
Things seem to get farther and farther away until they vanish at a point. Many times that point is near the middle of the page, but doesn’t have to. If you’re looking down the street, objects closer to you look larger than the objects farther away from you.
Here are a few other images that show you one point perspective:
Notice how everything seems to lead to one particular point in the images near the back of the picture. Everything close to you looks bigger and items farther away get smaller. With the trees you can see more of he front tree than you can of the others. You can see more of the buildings that are closer to you, than the ones that are farther away.
Here are hints for drawing in one point perspective:
Make all diagonal (slanted) lines so that they come from the single dot vanishing point. The Vanishing Point marks where you stop seeing separate diagonal lines going away from you. It looks like they come together there. It makes things look smaller as they get farther away from your eyes. It makes things look larger as they get closer to your eyes. In other words, these diagonal lines that look like an upside down V help you see things on the page in perspective.
All straight lines across will be parallel with the horizon line.
All straight up and down (vertical) lines will be parallel with the right and left side edges of the paper.
Materials You’ll Need: 8.5 x 11 inch piece of paper, a ruler, a pencil, and a white eraser.
If you are drawing a room in one point perspective, here is one way to begin:
Draw a line from the top left hand corner to the lower right hand corner of your paper.
Draw a line from the top right hand corner to the lower left hand corner of your paper.
Draw a straight line across the middle of the page. This will be your horizon line.
Mark a dark dot in the middle of the horizon line. You can use a red colored pencil to help it stand out. This dot is called your vanishing point.
If you want, you can draw a rectangle to represent the wall at the far end of the room or hall.
Now draw the hallway or room in detail with pictures on walls, desks, chairs, and doorways or windows. Good luck😊!
If you are drawing a street scene, road, or railroad track scene, you might want to start with these directions:
Draw a straight line across the page close to the middle of the paper. This will be your horizon line.
Draw a dot near the middle of the page. This will be your vanishing point.
Decide how far apart you want your up-side-down V-shaped diagonal lines. Draw two diagonal lines that go from the vanishing point to the bottom of the page so that they are wider at the bottom.
Draw the other items. Any slanted line will go through the vanishing point. The straight lines will be horizontal or vertical.
Print out one of the three pictures above or another one point perspective image from your own personal photo collection. Trace it or draw it using pencil and ruler. Be sure to note your horizon line and vanishing point, as well as the slanted, diagonal lines that all lead to the vanishing point.
Sit in your front yard and sketch what you see in one point perspective.
Sketch a hall scene from your house. Take a picture of it and draw it or sit at one end of the hall and draw it.
I feel great today. This year I’ve been focusing on my art and illustration skills. I’m trying to relax and enjoy drawing and painting of all forms. Today I’m sharing an experience I had and a few great resources that inspired me. I hope they inspire you, too.
A couple of months ago, I attended a “Haiku and Watercolor” workshop given by Lisa Ann Cullen. (Thank you, Lisa) It was fun learning about Haiku. I actually wrote two Haiku poems and learned different watercolor techniques that I could use to illustrate my favorite one.
It has three lines.
The first line has 5 syllables; the second has 7 syllables, and the third has 5 syllables.
Haiku hint at or mention a season and the weather and tell about an event that touched you emotionally and almost unforgettable: happy, sad, angry, frightened, amazed, etc.
The third line relates a surprising fact or observation about the situation explained in the first two lines.
When I first learned about Haiku poetry, I was only told about the number of syllables for the poem. Nothing about the other fascinating details about weather, seasons, or emotional surprises in line 3. The new information makes Haiku more fun and challenging and makes the Haiku poems I write more meaningful to me.
Around 2008, my husband, Carl, and I went to Tybee Island, near Savannah, Ga. We stayed at a house on Captain’s Way. Nearby there was a bridge crossing a pond heading to a beach area. We crossed over the bridge and stopped to look at the pond. I noticed little heads popping up out of the water. I talked out loud to Carl and said, “Oh my goodness, Carl. There are turtles out there. Look at the tiny heads at the top of the water.”
The more I talked, the more the turtles popped up and the heads moved closer to Carl and me. In a few minutes, turtles filled about ten feet or more of the space in the pond close to us. It was like they came to listen to us…to talk…like we were ministers at church or like they were at a concert. We walked on across the pond and looked at the ocean and a few pieces of driftwood.
When we walked back across the bridge, I said, “Carl, you try it. You talk and see if the turtles come to you.”
So Carl talked to the turtles and they came to listen. I decided to go to the other side of the bridge and talk to the turtles on that side to see if they would go all the way around to Carl or if they would come to me. They came to me. But Carl still had his audience. We’ve been back there several times since then. Every time, I make it a special point to visit with the turtles and talk to them.
After we wrote our poems, Lisa and another lady share watercolor techniques to use for the illustration for our favorite poem that we wrote.
Directions for watercolor techniques: (Use regular watercolor paper.)
Wash – Cover the whole page with one particular color.
Dark to Light Wash – Start with dark color and then put more water into it and it will go lighter and lighter.
Vary colors in a wash. Wait until each color dries before adding a different color.
Alcohol – Take a dropper and drop alcohol into different areas of he wash when it dries. It will make little circles.
Salt. Do a wash. Then put salt on the page.
Plastic Wrap. One of the participants brought plastic wrap. You lay the plastic wrap on your wash before it dries. It leaves interesting lines.
Cotton Swabs. Do your wash. Then take cotton swab and remove colors from different areas.
There are many other techniques to use with watercolors to make them intriguing and geared to your particular creativity. In the resources area, I shared with you some of the links that I found that had nifty ideas.
Lisa Anne Cullen said, “When your watercolors dry out, you can cut out figures or designs and glue them on top of another watercolor page. It will make a 3-D effect.”
Type the poem (Calligraphy, if you desire.) Paste the illustration on the same page. Frame it, if you like. Below is a picture of my framed “Turtle Pond” Haiku poem with its illustration.
I hope you enjoyed reading my blog. I encourage you to do something fun and perhaps try something new. I look forward to hearing from you. Click on Comment and scroll down to the bottom of the page to leave me a note. Share resources you’ve found and watercolor painting you enjoy.
Oh my goodness! What a great book signing event we had on Saturday, February 25, 2017! Thanks to Barnes and Noble and The Charlotte Writers Club for providing the opportunity to take part in this Book Fair at the Arboretum store. It was over the top wonderful in every way! Thank you to the following people for coming by: Dy English, Lorrie York Hackett, Mollie York Chewning, Mark Chewning, Kylie Hackett, Luke Chewning, Wyatt Chewning, Janet Meyer-Jackman, Barbara Lunow, Dan Lunow, Janis Silverman, Richard Silverman, Jeff Dubrielle, and Patricia Duran.
First came, Dy English, an illustrator friend from The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI). Thank you, Dy.
Thank you to my daughters and their families, Lorrie Hackett, Mollie and Mark Chewning, Kylie Hackett, Luke and Wyatt Chewning for coming to my book signing. A few minutes after they came, I got a big surprise that brought tears of gladness to my eyes. My sister, Janet Meyer-Jackman flew down from Michigan to be there! So sweet! Everyone enjoyed keeping the secret!
Front left to right: Luke Chewning and Wyatt Chewning
Second Row, Joan, Mollie Chewning, Lorrie Hackett, Kylie Hackett
Third Row,Barbara Lunow, Patricia Duran
Fourth Row: Richard Silverman, Janis Silverman, Dan Lunow, Mark Chewning, Janet Meyer-Jackman
Here’s the way it went. Lorrie, Kylie, Mark, and Wyatt were sitting on the long bench in front of the magazine section. Mollie and Luke were standing in front of the magazines. I asked them what they’d been doing today. Mollie said, “We’ve been shopping.”
“What were you shopping for?” I asked.
Mollie said, “Turn around and see!”
There stood my sister, Janet Meyer-Jackman! Oh my goodness! Tears ran down my cheeks.
Thank you to Jeff Dubreuil for coming. I hadn’t seen him in about 20 years. He and his sister are caring for their Mother. I am praying for them.
Thank you, Janis Silverman and Richard Silverman for coming. Janis was the leader of the writing group that helped me get Flip Flap Floodle in shape for publication. She let me know that my frog illustration needed work. She couldn’t tell that the frog was a frog!
Thank you to Barbara Lunow and Dan Lunow for coming. Barbara was in the Savvy Wordsmiths critique group in Fort Mill that closed down last year. I miss seeing them once a month.
Patricia Duran, thank you for coming and for helping me pack up my books and things and carrying them to my car. Patricia and I are movie friends who make each other laugh.
I was wound up, high in the clouds, feeling great!
When it came time for my reading, I was excited.
I am so thankful to God. There was a crowd of about 15-18 people watching and listening. Most sat in a semi-circle. Others stood to my left. I am thankful to Liz G. Williams and Ione O’Hara, two of the other authors at the book fair who listened to my readings. That was so sweet.
I read first from Joan’s Elder Care Guide encouraging caregivers to ask questions and to keep asking them until they get the answer they need. I told that it is very important to leave a plan that includes what the elder can and cannot do because it helps the substitute caregiver do a good job.
Afterwards, I read from Flip Flap Floodle. I planned to stop after Flip meets Mr. Bear, but I said, “One more page won’t hurt, right?”
Ione O’Hara said, “Show us the fox. We know he’s in there.”
So I showed them Mr. Fox who didn’t like Flip’s song and swallowed him whole. Flip was inside the Fox’s belly still playing his song. Flip’s Mother bopped Mr. Fox with her pocketbook and sprinkled pepper on his nose. Mr. Fox sneezed. Out flew Flip Flap Floodle still playing his song on his flute. Flip Flap Floodle, Floodle Floodle. Click here to hear me sing Flip’s song.
Thank you very much to Whitney Schuner, the Community Business Development Manager
Barnes & Noble-Arboretum. She did an outstanding job of organizing the Book Fair at the Barnes and Noble – Arboretum. All of us authors appreciate you.
I sold 6 copies of Flip Flap Floodle and 5 copies of Joan’s Elder Care Guide. Thank you to all of you who came and a special thanks for purchasing my books and those by other authors! The event was such a success that Barnes and Noble and Charlotte Writers Club may agree to have an annual bookfair!
Merry Christmas to each of you. May God bless you and fill you with joy, peace, good health, and prosperity!
One day when I went to recycle boxes at a friend’s UPS store, he asked me how my Mother was doing. I told him that she wasn’t doing well. He said, “I will ask my God to bless her.”
That made me feel so special. So if you don’t believe in the same God, or believe the same religious beliefs as me, I want you to know that I wish good things for you. If there’s a good wish, you would like to hear, I hope you will interpret that I’m saying it in my words, “I wish all good things for you. Merry Christmas!
Thank you for reading my blog and leaving comments. You lift my spirits and give me joy.
If you have writing, illustrating, or never giving up topics that you would like for me to research and write about, please let me know in the comment area or email me at email@example.com!
In January, I plan to do a post every other day on “Why Not?” I may change the title but the meaning will be the same – to encourage each of us to take that first step towards something we want to do or have been afraid to do.
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