Sunday, March 13, 2011

Have Ink Will Print

Bought new printer ink yesterday...which probably won't last the week!  But that is jumping ahead,  this story REALLY begins 3 years ago....

This feeling inspired it all!
In the middle of a very long night, of very little sleep....Me and my magic milk making abilities were feeling very needed by a certain hungry, thirsty, hot, cold, squirmy, Baby Girl.  Like most human babies Baby Girl only has 4 limbs....BUT somehow in that very LONG night she felt more like a baby octopus to me, constantly wrapping and unwrapping her limbs around me, her blanket, and anything else she could reach.  After "freeing" myself form the clutches of Baby Girl and deciding, "Who needs sleep anyway!?!"  I got up and wrote a simple little story, "Goodnight Little Octopus." 

Pre-Bologna color work.
Over the next few months I drew illustrations for the story and eventually created a mock up of the book,  known as a "dummy."   I sent my dummy and transcript to a few different publishers over the next year, with no response....which I know is nothing unusual.  Last March I attended a little mini-conference organized by the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators in Bologna, where I had a portfolio review.  Changes were my precious baby....egos where bruised.  I did however make changes, but confidence waned, and I could no longer tell what I liked and didn't like.  So with self-confidence in the basement I gave "Little Octopus" a rest...for a whole year.  
Post-Bologna color work

 A few weeks ago I was reading a chapter in the parenting book, "Nurtureshock".  The chapter was discussing how, according to research, our popular notions of making sure our children have "high self-confidence" actually doesn't really translate to success in later life.  The thing that has the largest correlation to success is the amount of effort one is willing to put forth.  So with a little "self-parenting" and my favorite Yoda quote, "Do or do not..." "Little Octopus" has been resurrected!  AND today, printer ink in hand, I WILL prepare "Little Octopus" to journey, once again, to far away publishers in distant lands.    
The take home message, "Self-Confidence, Smelf -Smomfidence...GET YOUR BUTT IN GEAR!"