June Hedge a gram

Happy June,

     This is my June Hedge a gram, my time to gather my thoughts about my current work and share them with you.  As much as I am enthusiastic about the book I'm working on THE EASTER EGG, the purpose of this Hedge a gram is to give you insight into the process.   For many future writers and Illustrators, I want to say, "you are the future!"
     I am working extra hard this month to make up the time I spent working on a poster for the National Book Festival in Washington, D.C.  Time is very precious.  I think I can speak for many authors and artists, when I say that it takes self discipline to clear the hours needed to be productive.  If your time is dictated by a traditional job, people respect that, but if you make your own hours, it is very hard for others to understand you need time to work.  I think that maybe that's why many authors work late into the night when there are less interruptions to their work, or lock themselves away in a private place.  There is certainly no time to work only when inspired because that's not effective enough.  One of the ways to corral productive thoughts is to work on ideas while doing other things like sleeping, exercising, driving, or listening to music.  I guess that's why I can be described as "off in my own world"!
     I have completed the dummy for my book and have met with my editor, Margaret and gotten feedback from the art director Cecilia.  In the next few days, I will read my story over and over again, sharpening ideas, getting the emotional balance right and smoothing rough edges.  I'll hone the manuscript down in size as well.  One of the things I discussed with my editor was where the text would be located.  Usually I place it within the picture, especially if it's a snowy book, but in this book the type will be at the bottom of each page.
     At this point, the feeling I have toward the new book is one of total excitement and exuberance, with lots of promises to myself to not fall into certain design pitfalls that I'm prone to!  If you analyze your work, you can divide it into two sides - the forces that work and bring your ideas forward, and the forces that confuse or muddy your vision.  This is always hard to enforce!  In THE EASTER EGG, my goal is to tell Hoppi's story without crowding him out with too much information about the other rabbits.  Often I can visualize the pages in my mind before I start the artwork,  but once in a while the artwork takes on a life of its own and I'm surprised at what comes out on paper.
     I am intrigued with the idea of showing lots of rabbit breeds, and am pouring over books showing rabbits in all their shapes and colors.  If you have a characterful pet rabbit and would like me to put it in my book, email me with a photo with its name, and your name, or just your first name.  I can't promise your rabbit will be in the book, but it might be!
     I already have a black rex, an angora, and an black and white dutch.  I will be putting all the model rabbit's names in the front of the book.  Happy reading and drawing,

                                            Your friend,

                                                 Jan Brett