Temporary Good-bye

Last December, I started posting here every day to share my illustrations and poems, highlighting some from the book that I self-published, The Dancing Fish. At first, I thought I’d stop posting after a couple months. Then I figured why not keep going, and wondered if I could manage 365 straight days.

Part of my answer was that I could’ve used my old work — which led to me rediscovering some of what I created eight to ten years ago and had forgotten. Also, I created a bunch of new material to accompany the old work. Poems, stories, and illustrations that popped in my head.

I’m proud to have reached the 365 milestone, which was on December 10. Then I felt an urge to keep going a little longer.

Along the way, I’ve met many other creatives on WordPress. I’ve enjoyed reading your poems and stories, seeing your photos and illustrations. I’ve enjoyed making friends with you in our journeys of creativity.

Thank you for reading my posts and sharing your thoughts on them. I really appreciate the time you’ve taken to do that. It’s been wonderful to read about the reactions and feedback.

Writing and drawing help me a great deal. With processing emotions. With handling depression and anxiety. To create form of the images/scenes in my head, then seeing the differences of the form compared with what was in my head. Surprises come from those differences. And the joy of making something that wasn’t in my world before.

To me, crafting something is magical.

It opens the door to frustration and disappointment when the something didn’t turn out as we had hoped. And it opens the door to discovery and surprising ourselves.

I’m going to take a break from blogging for a bit. I’m devoting more of my energy to writing a novel. I finished the first draft in summer 2020, and the story needs a lot of work. It’s science fiction-ish. I’d rather not mention details right now. Those will come later, after more of the story takes form.

This is a temporary good-bye. I’ll drop in now and then. I’ll let you know about my progress, and I’ll read your latest material.

I wish you well as we say good-bye to 2021 and say hello to 2022. I wish you much joy in experiencing where your creativity goes.

Children’s Book Progress

I’m very pleased on how the draft of my children’s book is moving along. As with Dancing Fish, I enjoy seeing the layout come together, in arranging text and illustrations on the pages.

These two projects have been much closer to my day job of graphic design than my previous books, in that the projects I work on for clients typically include text, photos, and graphs. These elements are arranged on the pages with the purpose of clear communication.

Same goal with the children’s book. I don’t want to crowd the pages to make reading difficult. I want the pages to have variety, in the hope of keeping readers interested.

Certainly it’s a different kind of reader. A typical project for my day job is a research report or cover for a civil engineering book. And the new book for my personal project is intended to be read with kids. I love the idea of parents reading this book to their kids. I really hope that idea comes true. I’ll keep you posted when the book is published.

For now, here’s a sample of some of the artwork in the book:

silhouettes of lion, pineapple, moon, and rhinoceros

Writing Update: Children’s Book

Today, I’m taking a break from posting poems and the weekly book reviews. I’d like to include more updates of what I’m doing for my larger projects (larger than poems for this blog). This will be helpful to me in getting my thoughts down, and some of you good folks might be interested.

I’m working on a children’s book, and I’m really pleased how its coming along. It feels to be a fitting project after I finished The Dancing Fish (poems and illustrations). I’m also drawing for the children’s book, but the drawings are not as prominent in a typical picture book. A bit of something different. It’s been fun, and feels meaningful to me.

I’d rather not share loads of details about the book right now, since it’s still being developed. But when I get closer to publishing, I’ll share the cover with you. And after it’s published, I’ll share images of some of the pages, to give you a sample. So stay tuned!

Welcome, 2021

Happy New Year! Here’s hoping this year will be brighter than the ugliness of 2020.

Unfortunately, the news is still bad for Covid-19, and experts say we’re in for a dark winter. Yet vaccines are being distributed, so hope is here for some people, and in the distance for the rest of us.

My family and I have hunkered down for months and worn masks when we venture out. And we’re ready to continue doing that. Certainly, I miss getting together with family outside of the house, and seeing them without masks. And hugging them. And hugging friends. But we understand the safety of holding off on those activities. Which will feel sweeter when we can do them with less risk.

I wish you good health and happiness in this new year.