Saturday, March 28, 2009

A blog in place of a real blog (which turned out to be utter rubbish!)

I tried to write something about the SCBWI event I went to today, but I've just read it back and it's the blog equivalent of over-toasted marshmallow. I might try and come back to it tomorrow when my brain is less smushy.

I also did some life-drawing on the train, which I'm going to refrain from inflicting upon you all- see how much I value you your eyes!

I shall now away to fill myself with all manner of bad things; i.e. pizza, icecream and Gossip Girl. Gazooks! I forgot how much concentrating for the day exhausts you...

Thursday, March 26, 2009

whether the weather will cheer me up.

I'm feeling ever so slightly below parr this week. I think it has a great deal to do with the disappearance of Mr Sunshine.

Don't get me wrong, I am not a big Summer fan. I do not do Summer well at all in fact. Largely because it seems to equate itself with all things 'girly,' and I'm far from an expert in these matters. Summer is for dresses and shorts and tanned limbs and people who's face's actually have the mass to peer out from beneath sunglasses. Summer is not for jeans and hoodies (my only attire- no really, I've been to both meetings and parties in this ensemble) and white flesh (that doesn't even have the ability to go that endearingly British shade of 'fire engine' red, of which we seem so proud). It's not for sweating or squinting. It's not for DOING anything. It's for sitting daintily outside of cafe's in something long and floaty and sipping iced tea (I have strong suspicions that iced tea might actually be a substance more sinister... involving cats...! Keep that under your sombrero's though...)

Anyway, what I do like is a darned good Spring or Autumn. I like the sunshine without the heat, and the pressure, and the huge hoards of students and families that suddenly claim the parks and tut at me for letting the dog wee too closely to them (little do they know, she was on strict orders!) I like watching plants pop up from soil, decked in their fanciest outfits. And I like trees bookending the Summer with their own colourful displays. I do not like men wandering around Tesco with no tops, larger cleavages than I have (at either end of me!) and their beer bellies dusting the floors as they go.

Oooh, anyway, the sun must have heard me and is making a brief appearance so I shall go and enjoy it. If it's not sunny where you are, you should most definitely cheer yourself up with this.

Hands up who's looking forward to 'Where the Wild Things Are' The Movie? I really hope it's good. I'd love to do a book as dark and brilliant as that one day.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Bologna Bites the Dust

Alas, it is the last day of Bologna Book Fair 2009. I somehow thought there would be more coverage in the publishing journals, but I guess they must do a following week post-mortem, when all the figures are in. I slightly regret not getting myself together to go, expensive as it would have been- It seems such a shame to have completely missed my first book being shown. Obviously, I couldn't have crept into the meetings (perhaps disguising myself as a litter bin or a truly hideous, gurning, lampshade) but I'd have loved to have been part of the outside hub-bub. The Cheer Squad, as it were. I'd definitely like to go next year. Especially if I manage to have another book there. I'm dying to know what really goes on.

I spoke to my art director about the new book this morning and she does assure me she's heard the show's bustling. I'd certainly like to believe her take on things above the quote from Jean Feiwel, in, 'Publishing Weekly' that, "I knew attendance was down when I walked right into the ladies' room." Well, that quote was taken from the first day so I'm sure it's picked up greatly since *eek!*

Come on, People- Sell! SELL!
I went for cake and chat with, the very talented, Gemma Raynor a couple of days back. She'd just been sent a Korean copy of her book, 'What's the Time Mr Wolf?' 'What's the Time Mr Wolf?' came out a few years ago now in the UK, but it had just been released there (complete with weird and wonderful back spreads of korean pictures and text, translating all the 'english-isms' in her pictures- brilliant!) Anyway, the fact that her book is still converting into different languages and new markets, years on is promising. I guess Bologna is only the main selling place.

Here's one of my 'in front of the TV' doodles. Since I have a little time on my hands at the minute, I decided to have a go at colouring it.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Bologna Book Fair

Well, tomorrow is the last day of the Bologna Book Fair. It seems quite bizarre that the thing I've been working up to, and also the one everyone has been speculating so much over this year, has passed by nearly unnoticed.

Of course I've been checking The Bookseller's site for updates on an almost hourly basis. And I've definitely been tempted to click refresh immediately every time nothing new comes up... just incase... However, yesterday and today have been ridiculously normal. House-workey, doodlingly, dog-walkingly normal. And meanwhile, somewhere in Italy, Lively Elizabeth is doing her thing. I'd like to think she's swimming rather than sinking, but who knows, and I can't help her anymore.

I think I'm particularly ansy because I have no visuals to attach to what's going on over there. With all the doom and gloom talk about this year's fair, the most my brain can muster is a small stall behind which little publishing figures hold up books, yelling,

'Two for a pound! Getcha books here! Two for a pound!'

Thursday, March 5, 2009

you may mock...

Huzzah! My art director, Claire, has been chugging away this last couple of weeks, getting all the book jackets ready for Bologna. Last time I spoke to her, she had five still to do and only the slightest hint of a whiff of panic in her voice- that's professionalism for you! Anyway, I emailed her today to tell her the colour roughs for the second book were in the post and hey presto, she emailed me back this piece of loveliness!

This is her mock-up of how the jacket will look, so now we await Bologna feed-back on it. Even if the overall look passes the test, the illustrations will still need deciding on and drawing. I think they'll be similar poses though, as they suit the shape of the text pretty well.
Also, I'm very excited to say the fantastic Mr Svein Nyhus dropped by so, not only am I immensely honoured, but I now have a blog address for him. Everyone go look. His work is absolutely amazing. It presents a truthful portrayal of kid-dom I think i.e. some of it's quite dark and yummy, with a good dose of humour but essentially the whole goshdarned thing is beautiful and precious. Unfortunately, since he's Norwegian, I haven't got the faintest idea what he's actually talking about in his blog, but I'm sure they're great words of wisdom!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Time for Tea

I'm getting to that stage of the day when I can't see straight and suppose I should probably stop before I do something disasterous. This rather sane thought usually occurs to me just as my finger is hurtling gleefully towards the 'close and don't save' button, and right before I think 'ooh... er... bum...! How long will it take to redo that, I wonder...?' So, bunking the trend (what an anarchist I am!) I'm calling it a day.

It's quite frustrating that I can't put up what I'm working on at the moment, but it won't be long until this book's completed too. Arg! Think I'm getting to that age when I'll go about remarking on how 'time flies' to anyone who'll listen. Surely it can't be long before I start catching buses PURELY to regale queasy-looking teens with grotesque tales of corns and bunions...? It's good to have something to look forward to, eh?!

I thought I'd stick up some more 'Lively Elizabeth' prep work in the mean time...!