(Courtesy of Wikimedia.org)
As the release date of my debut picture book, THE STORY CATCHER, draws closer I learn more about all the hard work being done behind the scenes by my publisher, Anaiah Press (www.anaiahpress.com).
When I first signed my book contract I was wondering why it takes so long from acceptance to finished product. I was naive to the process and had a lot of questions of my editor, Jessica Schmeidler. To give Jessica her due, she was and continues to be very patient with a newbie author who is trying to learn the business side of writing as quickly as she can.
Picture books by their very nature require actual pictures to help carry the story and Anaiah Press spent many months searching for just the right artist to bring my story to life. Then that illustrator went to work creating the initial sketches to supplement the story line. I had the chance to see some of the initial sketches and to be honest, I had some trouble imagining what the final illustrations would look like. Back to Jessica I went and she gave me a quick lesson on the type of illustrations my book would have. No stick figure for little Addie but no 3-D creation either. That was an illustration decision Anaiah Press made I could live with!
I'm sure a true artist could explain things better than myself, but the way I understand it, those initial drawings will then become a series of painted drawings to complete the picture book before being converted into a digital format for the ebook and print copies.
All this takes time to get it right. I guess that's why writers have to have a lot of patience. I haven't seen the final galley proofs yet but I know they will be gorgeous because I trust both my editor and my publisher to know what they're doing.
I can hardly wait for the day when I am able to reveal my book's cover. Until then, I'll try to be patient and count my blessings for the village of experts willing to publish my picture book.