Monday, June 17, 2013

My Next Big Thing: Brave Julia

My Next Big Thing

The Next Big Thing is a global blog tour, started in Australia, to showcase authors and illustrators and their current work. I was tagged by the fabulous Alison Davis Lyne.
So now I'll answer some questions about my newest book, then pass the Q & A along to  others who'll pick up the tour July 4th:

What is the working title of your next book? I am currently working on a book proposal titled Brave Julia.

Where did the idea come from for the book? As an illustrator who also comes up with story ideas from time to tome, my stories often emerge from a visual idea - a funny or sweet image that I want to create - and then I develop a story around it. I had an image in my mind for a long time of a little girl who is unafraid of the monsters who try to scare her at night, and I finally wrote it down!

In what genre does your book fall? This is definitely a bedtime picture book for young children.

What actors would you choose to play the part of your characters in a movie rendition? Oh boy, that's a tough one, I wouldn't know where to begin! There is a little girl, a rabbit, and a whole host of other characters such as a queen and a horde of monsters. 

What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book? Julia has a wild imagination, which is loads of fun during the day, but a wild imagination at night can become scary... if you let it.

Who is publishing your book? I have just begun looking for a publisher.

How long did it take you to write the first draft of the manuscript? The story evolved over the course of about a year. The first solid draft took about two weeks to write, but that was after thinking about it and re-working it for a year. Since I am also an illustrator, I have created drawings and paintings to go with the proposal. The initial drawings took about two weeks, and the paintings each took a couple of days. 

What other books would you compare this story to within your genre? As a bedtime book involving monsters, I think it's easy to associate this story with the incomparable Maurice Sendak's Where the Wild Things Are (or at least, I would be thrilled if anyone made that association!).  

Who or what inspired you to write this book? As mentioned earlier, the inspiration came from a visual idea - one which just seemed to pop into my head - of a little girl who is not afraid of the monsters in her room. I think part of me just wanted to draw some wacky monsters. After that, I was encouraged to develop the story in a class I took with the wonderful Betsy and Ted Lewin, who have written and illustrated dozens of children's books. 

What else about the book might pique the reader's interest? There is a rabbit character who is also central to the story, and who is based on a real rabbit who lives with me and keeps me company in the studio while I paint!

Thank you for stopping by here to help me celebrate my "Next Big Thing." Now on to the next candidates who will post on July 4th:

Lee White
Monica Wellington