Friday, April 26, 2013

Sick Leave

                          fever. chills. nausea plus.
                          i'm calling in sick.
                          see you next week.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

What Nobody Tells You

For all of us who are in the state of becoming, watch this encouraging tidbit posted on Leen Christens's blog.  It is a video excerpted from an interview with radio personality Ira Glass. It might be just what you need to keep moving forward.

Thanks, Leen!

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

NaPiBoWriWee 2013

Paula Yoo's National Picture Book Writing Week challenge is just eight days away.  I'm going to prepare by prepping an idea a day from now until the end of the month.  I had no idea how to prep last year, so I stalled out mid-week.  (Or is that "mid-Wee"?)  I am determined to achieve all seven drafts this year.  How about you?  Did you participate in 2012?  How many drafts did you write?  Where are they now?

Logo design by Sandy Tanaka 

I found a thorough list of writing resources in Paula's archives which may interest some of you.

You can read my summary of the event with links to more info.

As always, you can psych yourself up with cool writers' paraphernalia at the official shop.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Constant Companions

"Books are the quietest and most constant of friends."
-Charles W. Eliot

Bookplate for Benedictine abbot,
 by Augustin Pacher

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Illustrator Leen Christens

Animal Transport, courtesy  Leen Christens 
 Today's artist spotlight is on Leen Christens, of Belgium.  Leen is a Kindergarten teacher whose sensitive watercolors largely feature animals with a touch of whimsy.  I love her fresh handling of both watercolor and ink line.  Although self-taught and dedicated to her career, Leen actively pursues her passion of writing and illustrating.

I admire her creative spirit and loose illustrative style.  Leen is also a Watercolor Wednesdays contributor.

Len is on hiatus, but we hope to see her work back on Etsy and at her blog in the near future.

Vacation Snail, courtesy Leen Christens 

Monday, April 15, 2013

Desire for Success

"In order to succeed, your desire for success should be greater than your fear of failure."
– Bill Cosby

P. F. Madigan bookplate,
by L. J. Le Rolland

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Illustrator Ilaria Falorsi

Courtesy Ilaria Falorsi
From published by Piemme
Regular followers of Bookish Ambition know that weekend posts usually feature unknown illustrators.

Today I'd like to introduce Ilaria Falorsi.  Ilaria is by no means a newbie, but I would venture to say she is largely unknown in America.  I admire this prolific Italian artist for her bold graphic shapes and quirky characters.  Read about her escapades at the  Bologna Book Fair or shop for her prints at Society6.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

No Time To Write?

 Compensate, says Berthe Amoss.  She suggests you look at it this way: 4 weeks(see below) to finish the dummy.  What can I let go for 4 weeks?   Is there some commitment, project, or chore that can get by with the bare minimum for 4 weeks?  Can my spouse take something over for that period?  Can I lose a little more sleep just for 4 weeks so I can finish this dummy?

I find that April is one of the busiest months of the school year.  Our family is committed to dinner together every week night.  Preparing dinner 5 days a week requires a large time-commitment from me.  So I'm compensating by cutting back on meal prep.  My family and I have decided to eat light for just four weeks.  Menus will include easy-to-prepare sandwiches, salads, and crockpot meals. Maybe I can even coax a few family members to take on the role of chef.  This gives me a few more hours in the day which I can allot to dummy prep!
Writing and Illustrating
Children's Books for Publication,
 by Berthe Amoss and Eric Seuben

For more on picture book making from start to finish, I recommend one of Amoss and Seuben's books.  As teachers as well as authors, they are adept at laying out the process in manageable steps.

We all know we need to make the most of our time.  We all have mind tricks we use to motivate ourselves as artists / writers.  I'd love to hear your rewards, tips, and motivational insights.
Just 4 weeks left to finish step 5 of the challenge,
but it's never too late to participate in the journey.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Gardens and Books

"An old book and an old garden, these be friends ever sympathetic, ever true."

Bookplate of John S. Holbrook
Courtesy Pratt Institute Libraries

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Illustrator Kim Kincaid

You are going to love today's Fresh Talent Feature!

Autumn, by Kim Kincaid
Clary, from City of Bones,by Cassandra Clare
Artwork courtesy Kim Kincaid
Kim Kincaid describes herself as "an aspiring artist."  Her style clearly shines through in her fantasy work.  When she applies that style to kidlit subjects, I would describe her as "inspiring" rather than "aspiring."

Don't forget to tour the Twirling Dragon for instructive peeks into her creative process.  Kim, best wishes on all you aspire to.

Friday, April 5, 2013

April Update, 300 Picture Book Challenge

by Frank W. Dormer
A Leaf Can Be . . .
Written by Laura Purdie Salas
Illustrated by Violeta Dabija
The Emperor's Cool Clothes
By Lee Harper
The Night Pirates
Written by Peter Harris
Illustrated by Deborah Allwright
Maybe a Bear Ate It
Written by Robbie Harris
Illustrated by Michael Emberley
Mail Harry to the Moon
Written by Robbie Harris
Illustrated by Michael Emberley
I Love Ewe
By Aaron Zenz
Big Kicks
By Bob Kolar
Open This Little Book
Written by Jesse Klausmeier
Illustrated by Suzy Lee

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

You cawn't cawn't cawn't miss this!

What if Eloise moved to Brooklyn?  The irresistible brainchild of Kay Thompson and Hilary Knight moves to the Wythe.  Check out this witty update of a children's classic from New York Magazine. (Click the photo there to see the rest.)

Thanks to Joana AvillezNY Magazine, and PW

Monday, April 1, 2013

Fearing Mistakes

"The greatest mistake you can make in life is to be continually fearing to make one."

-Elbert Hubbard

Bookplate of Theodule Comte de Grammont
by, Robert Anning Bell