October Hedge a gram
October is the month I'll be traveling all over the United States from one
bookstore to another. When I meet people there is a bit of a surprised feeling
about signing their book. Ever since I was little I wanted to be a children's
book illustrator, but I never imagined that going on a book tour would be part
of my job, especially on a big blue bus covered with scenes from The Umbrella.
That's one reason I write this monthly letter, so aspiring illustrators will
have a glimpse about what it's like to have a job like mine.
Most people who know me wonder what I do with my animals when my husband
Joe and I leave on our trip. It's one of the hardest parts about leaving.
Luckily I have a friend who loves my chickens and ducks and takes good care of
them. She even sends me email reports on who's been good and who's been....well
a challenge. It's also hard to leave my artwork for the book I'm working on
now, Honey, Honey, Honey, because I work many hours each day on it and suddenly
it will be out of sight. I will bring the finished pages to my editor, Margaret
and my art director, Cecilia to look at while I'm off signing books. I'm
excited for them to see it, but also worried they'll see something I haven't
thought out. What ever happens, I know my book will be looked at with loving
and wise eyes!
When I arrive at the bookstores I'll bring 100 signed posters for the first
people who arrive. I have fancy tickets that I've designed just for this tour,
along with extra signed bookplates so everyone will have a signature for all of
their books, even the ones that they bring from home. We'll be handing out my
letter to kids that I call my all about letter. It tells about how I created my
book The Umbrella and our travels to Costa Rica. It has a page for coloring
which pictures some of the rain forest animals. There is a town on the way to
the Monteverde Cloud Forest that is known for its colorful carts. The carts are
painted with bright designs which were so characterful that I bought a small one
to take home. I'm bringing it with me all across the country for people to see.
If you come to my signing, you'll see a backdrop of the cloud forest that I
put behind me. If you bring your camera we can have our photograph taken
together with the Monte Verde Cloud forest in the background.
At the beginning of the signing, I'll talk a few minutes about The Umbrella
and I'll draw a picture. I have a few tidbits about drawing that might help you
with your work. On the other hand, if you bring me one of your pictures for me
to see, I'll be inspired and learn something too. At each signing, I'll start
with a big grin because Hedgie will there to greet everyone. He adds to the
festive atmosphere. Wait till you see him.
It's a rewarding experience to meet people all across our country who loves
books and reading and I can't wait.
Happy Reading - see you soon!