Maybe you can’t judge a book by its cover, but with children’s books at least, it certainly does give an idea of what’s inside. This week I saw a first look at the cover layout for “Addie and Ollie” that was sent over by the friendly self-publishing elves at Lulu.com.
How excited was I to see my characters and Bob Ostrom’s fun illustrations make their cover debut? Well, kids, this is called a rhetorical question, one to which you and I both already know the answer: I was thrilled!
If you’re wondering about the white rectangle on the back, as I was at first, that’s for the ISBN number and bar code allowing the book to be made for sale on Amazon.com and bookstores I can convince to carry it. The magic number was emailed to me last week. ISBN#: 978-1-257-82101-3. It’s my new favorite number.
I couldn’t resist, however, one nostalgic glimpse back. As you can see from this computer-generated cover layout I originally created, Addie and her toy octopus have journeyed a long way since winning the Nature Made Sleep Bedtime Stories contest. I can’t wait to see where the little girl with big dreams will go next.
Fortunately I spotted this theme less than halfway through surveying the 1,300 or so free ones offered through WordPress. I wasn’t searching for a sailing theme, but as soon as I saw it, I knew it was a fitting metaphor for the various creative courses I’m attempting to navigate. And you might as well know now, I love metaphors.
The two big prizes on my horizon are: Addie and Ollie, my first children’s book due out late summer 2011 and my first novel, an historical fiction saga. I have absolutely no idea when that one will be finished! At any rate, without consciously intending it, both books are united by one theme. You guessed it–sailing. In fact, both of my heroines are drawn to the sea. Maybe this was an inevitable outcome of my growing up in Florida so near the ocean.
Yet besides this literal connection, I think the figurative one is even stronger. What are words, after all, but raw materials assembled as wood into these marvelous vessels we call books? Every author is a shipbuilder, every reader a captain, and the voyage of each is at once unique and interconnected.
Mine starts here. I hope you’ll join me.