At long last I can announce it. I’m going to be a children’s book author! My silly picture book manuscript THE ELEPHANTS’ HIDE-AND-SEEK HANDBOOK—a guidebook for elephants who want to overcome their size disadvantage in the game of hide-and-seek—is going to be a real, actual, buy-it-at-the-bookstore picture book for kids! Published by the proudly independent Sourcebooks through their imprint Jabberwocky. HOORAY! HOORAY! HOORAY! I hope you will celebrate with me!
Anyone reading the whole Publisher’s Weekly release (screen-grab pictured above) might see that I won’t be illustrating this one. I’d be lying if I didn’t admit that was hard for me at first (I’m still an artist after all) but I’ve had time since signing the contract to come to peace with it. AND it’s also happily true that I LOVE the work of the illustrator who was chosen, Gladys Jose-Fabii, and I think you will too. I especially love the hilarious expressions of her characters and I can completely see how the humor in her work matches the humor in my writing. I can’t wait to see how she adds to the book and I’ll be proud to have her name next to mine on the cover. So, many thanks to my editor Annie Berger for not only believing in my book—thank you Annie—but also for choosing Gladys as an illustrator. For my own part, I’m also psyched to embrace my voice as a writer more, even while reclaiming my voice as an illustrator with other works-in-progress. It’s a fantastic feeling to be able to have my writing stand on its own.
Since I already started thanking people, thanks also to Laura McGee Kvasnosky for mentoring me with this book when I first wrote it and to my critique group/partners for all the support over so many years’ worth of effort to become better at my craft. And many additional thanks to my wonderful agent Clelia Gore of Martin Literary Management, for believing in me, for helping me land my first book deal, and for helping me to bring out the best in my work and in myself. (And thanks also to Clelia for doing much of this work while technically being on maternity leave with a newborn at home. Seriously, Clelia you are a superhero.) Thank you all!
CHEERS PEOPLE! TO DREAMS COMING TRUE!