So I wrote a poem. Then I wrote more poems. I wrote a whole mess of poems, for and, for the most part, about Ronin. I have wanted to write a children’s book forever, even tried a time or two, but I always felt they were missing something. Turns out, the thing they were missing was my boy. He is my muse. He inspires me daily with his antics, his discoveries, the unique way he navigates his way through the world. I shared the poems with some friends to see if anyone else thought they were good, and they did. Then someone read them and said, “Oooh. You need to talk to Catherine Odell.”
Before I did that I checked out her website and then I got really excited. If I could make drawings to go with my book, which I decidedly cannot, this is just how they would look. Right then and there, I knew I would make a book with her, if not many books. This conviction was only solidified after I met her in person and discovered she was not only super talented but also super cool. And can write very descriptive texts in nothing but emojis.
And so our odyssey has begun. Trying to muddle through the publishing process has been an interesting one, to say the least. Did you know that publishers don’t really like writers and illustrators to present their work together? That they prefer to hook writers up with illustrators THEY choose? Neither did we. And like I said before, no other artwork will do. We are like peas and carrots, Sonny and Cher, umbrellas and galoshes. But so far no one in the publishing world believes me. So we’re going it alone, sticking our tongues out and waving our fingers out of our ears on the way out. Like the professionals we are.
But then we started getting hungry, and noticed it was getting dark. We wondered if we shouldn’t just go home, that perhaps we’d made a terrible mistake. We wondered why, at the very least, we didn’t pack a couple of sandwiches. But no! We will not give up! We will not go gently into that good night! We will figure this stuff out. Who needs a publisher? Who needs an agent? Who needs money? Oh wait. We do. To publish a book we’ll need some money. So that part we really do need to figure out.
I will be talking more about this project as Catherine and I muddle our way through figuring out how to get this book made. I am in a place where I’m not really comfortable, maybe even scared to death a little, but I’ve learned that that is a place where magic happens. I also feel really, really good about this little project, and ready to make it happen.
Wish me luck.