How can it possibly be May already? I know I mentioned this in a previous post, but dang, where did April go exactly? I was in such a hurry to hear news about my book but as each day passed, I moved on to other things, like playing pool again! I have been playing since I was 10. My Mom’s good friend invited us all down to her house on a hot summer day and they had a pool. I wasn’t that great a swimmer at the time, still am not, but I can stay afloat! However, after a few hours in the pool, I wanted something else to do. I discovered in their basement a table with green felt on it and some balls with numbers. I asked one of the kids what it was. A pool table! After some quick lessons, I was hooked. To heck with that other pool with water, this was my jam as the cool kids say nowadays. So fast forward 50 years and I am still playing the game. I enjoy league play here in Raleigh and hope to make it to Las Vegas one day and play in a national tournament. I love the game and trying to figure out angles and …………. HOLY CRAP BATMAN! I BECAME A PUBLISHED AUTHOR!!!
The big box came in on Thursday and my heart was pounding as I opened the flaps. There inside was a stack of books, my books, with my name on it, as well as my illustrator Samantha. I knew the story, wrote the story, rewrote the story, tucked the story away for years, brought the story out again, rewrote it again and again and again. When Samantha got it, we changed it again several times, honing, refining, reading, re-reading, reading out loud over and over until the cadence was right. Then the drawings came in one by one. Imagine this process of sketching and doodling and drawing, putting flesh and muscle on a set of bones that were the words. Bit by bit it came together, sketch by sketch, color after color, adding, changing, erasing and smoothing, night after night, day after day. In the book of Ezekial, there is a valley of dry bones and one day those bones got up and they walked around!! That’s kind of how I feel about the story. It starts out as just letters and words and phrases, but inside there is a story dying to be told. Then once you add pictures full of color and movement and expressions, those words, that story, it takes on life. For this Samantha, I will always be thankful and grateful for your talent and time.
I am beyond blessed and humbled by your incredible support. I really hope you like the story about The Sneezing Toucan. I hope you read it to you kids, your niece or nephew, or cousin or friend or your grandchildren or great grandchildren! Heck, just read it to anyone who will listen and especially to those who have a hard time reading. I read it to Harper, my granddaughter that same Thursday night. She had heard the story before and had seen some of the illustrations but this was the first time seeing it “as a book”. She stopped me once and asked me if I was going to get some money for this book and I said yes, people will pay me for the book. I thought, just like a woman, she wants to know about the money!! But seriously, she stopped me several more times and looked me in the eye and said, “You wrote this book!” “You wrote this book Boppa!” I said “Yes. Yes I did Harper. Boppa wrote a book.”
Till Next Time,