20.2.06

Seaside cats & winter days

Winter has returned and today the clouds and rain have been fighting it out with bright sunshine. The most cheerful things to be seen were the little gatherings of snowdrops, not at all put out by the fresh Nor'easter that was blowing round their petticoats, and a puzzled robin, who refused to respond to my whistle.

I had to do some of my own work this weekend. Or I would have gone nuts. I'm also thinking ahead to the Time of No More Jobs which is almost upon me, and so I'm taking my courage in my hands and sending out my picture book stories - again. I've been sending stuff out now for, blimey, well over a decade since graduating (and that's not including the god-awful poetry and weird stuff I used to bother innocent publishers with when I was a teenager). I lost my nerve a long time ago. I've had too many rejection letters. There was a spectacularly cruel twist of fate last summer, when an art director rang me out of the blue to tell me he was submitting one of my ideas to the monthly creative doo-dah, and enthused about it, got me all excited, then sent me a 'Dear John' letter a week later to tell me that it hadn't done it for the rest of the team. It's the hope that kills you. But I reckon that, as last year I achieved my goal of going fully freelance, perhaps this will be the year I fulfill a 20 year old ambition to get my own work published. I've got four projects, one is all about cats. Toy cats of course. By the sea, with surfing and everything. Sardine ice creams and doggy rides. It's going out this week, to Egmont books. Send happy thoughts, please.


11 comments:

Gail said...

"Happy thoughts - happy thoughts - happy thoughts ...!" Hope they work ;)
-Gail

Maya said...

Gretel your work is fantastic...It HAS to get published if they have any taste at all, they will choose it...
Happy thoughts always to you!!

p.s. that Icecream looks fab :)

Joanna said...

Cats by the sea is an ecellent book idea they could get up to such fun. Its reminded me of a lovely little book 'holiday in Cat land' The cats got the steam train to the seaside and the last sentance if I remeber rightly was 'and they fell to sleep to the sound of the sea'. Its illustrations where abit Edward Ardizzone but it was not him. Oh I want to read it now again and your story although I would rather choc chip ice cream than sardine! Fingers crossed for you.

PG said...

Hi Joanna, I've just bought it from ebay on your recommendation! It was done by a young girl called Alice Goyder,

"Alice Goyder wrote and illustrated the 'Catland' books in 1893 when she was a young girl. Although she became a professional painter, wood-carver and illustrator, for some reason she never published her first three books which lay, almost forgotten, for nearly a century, coming to light only after her death in 1960."

It was finally published in 1978. Thank you for that!

Stuntfather said...

Happy thoughts...

I mean, who could resist the sardine ice cream? It looks and sounds great to me, and I'm not even a cat person.

andrea said...

Been there done that with the rejection/hope thing. Maybe you should re-align your mindset and celebrate your rejections (make a collage!). I try often try to offset rejection by trying something/somewhere else. BTW Victoria, B.C., had snowdrops in January!

Donna said...

Gorgeous cats, they have real character. I think selling yourself is the hardest thing when all you really want to do is be creative. I am sending HUGE happy thoughts fo you xxx

Joanna said...

I hope you enjoy the book. I might have to find out about the other two. It was such a short little magical journey making you wanting more.

Becky said...

Sending good luck and many happy thoughts! I look forward to seeing those gorgeous little cats surfing along bookshelves one day very soon, dripping sweet, stinky sardine ice cream all the way, Becky

Excellent Walker said...

"It's hope that kills you."

Truer words were never written.

Sign Luca and Oz up for some of that sardine ice cream...

Stephen Collins said...

Like em, I expect to see them in a Waterstones window soon! Promotion is a pain but stick with it...