Thursday, July 28, 2005

Cereal Killer

Do you ever get distracted by an idea when you are trying to do something else? A really, really bad idea, that either everyone else has thought of because it's so obvious, or nobody has (or won't admit they have) because it's jus so silly and dumb?

So I'm trying to work on my dummy...ok, I stopped to have lunch and watched The New Detectives on TV. It's one of those crime shows where they show how killers were caught in real cases - don't ask why I like to watch stuff like that while I eat. I have no idea. It's either that or the Food Network. I start to get this stupid idea about a cereal killer. And I couldn't get it out of my head, so I'm posting it here for all of you to enjoy (or not).

The Cereal Killer
He found his first victim in the cereal isle of the local grocery store. He hated grocery shopping, and she was much too happy, cheery even. She screamed "Oh!" as he yanked her from the shelf. When he got her to his house, he tried to drown her in milk, but she just kept floating, so he smashed her with a spoon. A big silver spoon which glittered in the light of the overhead lamp. It was so shiny in the beginning that the man could see his reflection in the spoon, like a fun house mirror. Then the spoon was shiny no more, but covered in milk, and bits of Ms. Cheery O.

His appetite for murder increased the next morning, so he went back to the grocery store to find yet another victim in the cereal isle. Mrs. Wheats was too tempting for him to take her all the way home, so he shredded her in the car and went back for another.

Tune in next time, when we find out just what makes Kay so special that our cereal killer can't resist her.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

picture books and pirates

picture books
Even though I've spent way too much time reading blogs today, I did manage to finish two major picture book rewrites. Yippee! Now all I have to do is work on the dummies. Which I wish was as easy as it sounds. The good news though is that I have 4 of the 5 major characters drawn already, and the other one just needs a little bit of work, since he looks too much like another one of my characters.

Only a few more picture book rewrites to go before I'm caught up with all the ones I want to finish up this summer. Then it's time for more dummies, and working on the picture book ideas that I haven't started yet.

BTW, if it sounds like picture book writing and revising is easy, it's not. I've been working on a lot of these stories in one form or another for a while. Some of them have been around for several years.

My portfolio is coming along (slowly). I finished up a series of 5 pictures yesterday - yay! Although, now I need to revise the story to fit the of my characters suddenly decided he was going to be a pirate! Most of my characters are either well behaved or I just happened to get them right, so I haven't had too many surprises like this. A few, but not many.

I've been working with the pirate since January of 2004 and I never once suspected that's what he was. I've done multiple pictures and sketches, so it's not like I didn't know what he looked like. Of course, in the beginning, the character was a girl. Not that there can't be girl pirates, but she was more of a circus girl than a pirate.

Thursday, July 7, 2005

Portfolio Review

I'm busy trying to get enough new images done to bring a portfolio to the CBIG (Children's Book Illustrator's Group) meeting on Sunday. An editor from Knopf will be there and I'm hoping my portfolio will get picked in the lottery for her to review. (Crossing fingers and getting back to work...wait, I can't work with my fingers crossed!)

p.s about the music I'm listening to, whenever I listen to the song Are We The Waiting off of Green Day's American Idiot CD, I think it's about writing and illustrating picture books (especially for those of us who are still unpublished). I know it's not actually about picture books, but it's a cool song, and a few of the lines resonate with me as a kid's book writer and illustrator:

Heads or tails and fairytales in my mind
Are we we are, are we we are the waiting unknown

Update  7-11-05:
My portfolio got reviewed at the CBIG meeting, and the editor liked my new work - yay!!!!

She even wants to see one of my stories when I get the dummy might be a while, but I'm hoping to get it done before I go to LA (I leave Aug. 4th for the SCBWI conference).