Still working on ‘twilight lighting’ possibilities. And also want to come back to this page’s text…hard to have his knees shaking and and have his ‘stickily limbs’ also be frozen! I’m thrilled to post before midnight! Yay!
Already I’m finding myself changing the text. This will need revising, but for now, this is what I have. I think it’ll become more clear to me which way to go (with the text), not to mention ‘which way for these two little twigs to go! Twilight is supposedly getting darker, yet I’m still working on how to ‘see’ characters, their actions, and their environment in the dark. Speaking of dark, I need to get to bed or it’ll be dawn before I know it! For the record, what took so long tonight was trying to figure out how to post the illustration and the text together. WordPress doesn’t seem to want to let me upload it as a photo, so I have to stretch beyond my technical know how (which is very small) and export, and then take a screen shot to sort of ‘trick’ the computer to let me upload it as media?!!!
Today was quite a day! I was given an opportunity to read What Makes a Jingle Ring to children at FriendsFest, an event at Saxapahaw, NC. I thought I was really ready, after having made little cards to hand out with the cover page of my book on one side and my website address on the back. Then about 2 hours beforehand, I tried looking at the iPad outside, to make sure the book was visible, and all that was visible was a reflective screen. So I quickly jumped into fast mode and hoped my ink would hold out on my printer and began to act as my own Big Book printing press! First the photos, changing ink cartridges halfway through, and a sigh of relief as I finished the illustration copies. Next came what I thought would be the simple part, printing the text. How wrong I was! It reminded me of times I’ve tried to take a ‘shortcut’ in the car to get somewhere when I’m almost late…shortcuts seem to add miles and confusion to the mix! Three hours later, I’m still working on the text! Missed the first reading slot, and hit the tail end of the second slot. The few children that were there, were so wonderful and attentive! And they loved guessing what made the jingle ring! And they managed to stay engaged even when I got the text in the wrong order and discovered I was missing a picture! Agggh! self publishing…self printing…hmmm…guess I gotta start somewhere! The best part was one little girl that came by in between reading times. I let her read it on my iPad…silently, and at the end, she very kindly and genuinely said ‘the magic words’! “I really like your book! You did a good job!” Made my day! And also helped me realize that even older elementary age kids can appreciate it.
Another special part of the afternoon for me was seeing students that I had taught years earlier, and remembering all the books I helped them write themselves! Now I get to be cheered on by those very students as I work on my book! We’re all One Big Many! Thank goodness! Now that it’s launched, maybe I’ll earn enough to print some hard copies!
Lacy Leaf is a character in this first story of Twigs at Twilight.As Big Twig and Little Twig leap down from their branches in their large old oak family tree, they are headed on a search for their good friend, Lacy Leaf who has blown down from the tree before the day is done, before the magical time of twilight when adventurers are free to leave their daytime posts at the end of their branch. Even though, at this point, she is not supposed to show up in the story…I feel it is important to give her a shape in my mind. After all, it is because of her that this adventurous search begins.
This is my first attempt at painting the beginning of twilight, the time between daylight and dark. I want it to get darker as we move further into Big and Little Twigs adventure, and as the night moves on…yet I don’t want it to get so dark that we can’t even see the characters, where they are and what’s going on. Illustrating my writing is such a great exercise for me! It really helps me also shape the text. I’m so looking forward to seeing what happens with this story! I have been ‘sitting on this one for years…worked on it off and on, but not yet been happy with something about the flow of the story.
Two tiny twigs snap to the ground.
Lacy Leaf must be found!
She floated down on the Old North Wind.
Will they ever find their crinkly friend?
Last night was one of those ‘untimely’ ones! Up past 2 am dealing with technology tempests! I guess I need to give myself a little slack on learning how to navigate the subtle nuances of a new website vs. a blog! I was trying to post a painting and embed the text. I need to learn how to ‘draw and paint’ with not only the ‘content’ of the text in mind, but also merging the ‘text and painting layout’ . I actually don’t even know how to ‘language’ that much less ‘execute’ it! Agghh! And now that I’ve mentioned the word, execute, I didn’t at ALL intend to create a painting that looks like two little guys being ‘executed’ in a tree! NOT a good way to begin my next innocent children’s book!!!! I definitely need to adjust this illustration to reflect what is really beautiful in my mind’s eye! More work to be done!
As for the poem…I was digging through all my notes on Twigs at Twilight, (and this story has been in the making for years!) I came upon my initial poem that I wrote and have been tediously tampering with off and on ever since!… I’m courageously stepping through fear to tackle this one! And to get one step ahead of staying up til dawn each night, I’m posting this poem again TODAY! and the first page of the ‘story’ will come up TOMORROW!!! To write about ‘dawn’ I need to switch my inner clock!
TWIGS at TWILIGHT (initial poem)
Two tiny twigs become best friends
Perched on branches at different ends
By day they watch as the world moves by,
When twilight comes, they sprout wings to fly!
As evening shadows step out to play,
This moonlit night, twigs begin their day.
Through their limbs blow nightly breezes,
With winded breaths, each locked joint eases.
Knees once stiffened, wiggle and knob,
Eyes exchange winks, heads gently bob.
Linking elbows, they take their stance.
Two tiny twigs begin to prance!
They loosen their joints and raise their knees,
Dancing a circle that no one sees.
Off on adventure upon the lawn,
Until the untimely sun cries, Dawn!
HURRAY! The little birds are sharing the jingling sound around the world! What Makes A Jingle Ring is now available for sale on this website in my SHOP! Next, the sharing of it will take ONE BIG MANY! So if you like my first book, please share it with as many as you think might also like it! And if you have suggestions or comments about it for me, please share them with ME here on my new website! I’m the lucky learner in this process! Thank you ALL for you support! Enjoy! And please let me hear from you! Meanwhile,…. the next book is brewing…
The little birds that keep appearing in my illustrations are practicing their drum rolls and fancy steps to present the opening of a new website and publication of my first online book, “What Makes a Jingle Ring?” This has been quite a practice for me as well, especially the last details! So keep your eyes on the web and listen for any jingles, bird sounds, or mosswhispers, to herald it’s coming! This has been a dream for a good while and I’m grateful for all the bit of ‘lift’ I’ve been given to get this project off the ground! I’m so excited and hope you’ll enjoy what’s coming!