You Should, You Should!
And How It Was Made
You Should, You should! is my first children's book and is scheduled to publish with the wonderful company "Familius" October 15, 2013, in hardback print and digital for kindle.
I've documented the whole process so you can watch it evolve from rough draft to polished manuscript, from raw ugly sketch to colorful painting. Lucky you also get to hear my worries, fears, excitements, successes, publishing things and learn what it's like to be a completely NEW writer/illustrator.
Your comments and suggestions along the way have helped me immensely - I can't thank you enough.
Writing / Illustrating Process In Order:
- Big News - publishers showing interest
- Contract Signed! - yay!
- Hippo Character and Story Boarding - hippo started out ugly...
- THE STORY - inviting feedback :)
- ReWorking the Ending - Any help?
- Character Design - yikes...
- Thumbnails - teeny tiny drawings of what the page might look like
- Watercolor?? - choosing a medium is hard
- THE Dummy Book - starting to come together!
- Change the Title?? Help
- Size Relationships - to stabilize consistency of how big they are standing next to each other.
- DummyBook Reworks (Part 1)
- DummyBook Reworks (Part 2)
- Painting Number One AND Story Behind the Story - finally a painting!... and this is where I start sharing the whole reason why I wrote this story. Turns out to be very personal.
- Color Compositions - tiny with color pencil
- Dancing Hippo - which dance pose?
- Painting Hippo n Possum / Relationship Pyramid - finally two paintings!!
- Re-Evaluating - Hit a roadblock.... deciding to make some big changes!
- Digital? Good News, Sad News - I tried to switch to digital paint but might not work out after all.
- Writing a "Sales Hook"
- Writing the back of book Summary
- Finalizing Drawings (part 1)
- SPEED DRAWING - a MOVIE of me drawing really fast!
- Giraffe Painting
- Monkeys Painting, Birdy Painting
- Possum Painting
- Crocodile Painting
- Flamingo Painting
- Lightning Bug Painting
- Title Page Painting
- Giraffe Tugs Spot Painting
- The Crash
- Walk Like This?
- FRONT COVER
- Pre-Order on Amazon is avaiable!
- Ker-Splat and OO AH!
- La la la's
- "I like my spot! I like my hat!"
- A Sweet Chomp
- My Dance
- Good bye ol hat...
- Walk of my own
- I would rather swim
- Ending page
- In the Newspaper!
- Back of Book Cover
- Full Book Cover Jacket Printed
- 1st Gallery Show (open June 28 - July 13, 2013, at UVU Library)
- *SNEAK PEEK*
- Testing Book Reviews
How did I come up with the idea for the story?
I actually was in the midst of severe anxiety, depression, counseling, and studying like crazy about something called "Codependency" (read about codependent symptoms here) which finally explained years of habits and obsessions I couldn't seem to drop, and weaknesses I couldn't seem to overcome. As the time to consider my Senior Capstone Project approached, I decided to write and illustrate my own children's book. First I needed a story idea. Learning to become a person who doesn't eat sleep and breathe for the purpose of pleasing others was my main focus at the time, and I thought of how I rarely lived by choices, I lived by imagined "shoulds." I thought of how I did anything just so people would like me, even painful and uncomfortable things, all with a smile. I thought, if only I'd learned this lesson of giving merit to my own wants and feelings as a child, I might have avoided a lot of grief and enjoyed much healthier friendships. Thus, this little story idea was born.
I chose a hippo because he's perfectly awkward, yet totally cute. He's huge. Eats messy. Doesn't have hair (much). Not super agile. A codependent hippo would easily only focus on all these reasons why he's not important enough to be loved unless he's pleasing others. But a confident and healthy hippo would quickly see the asset he is and love being in his own skin. He wouldn't waste a minute comparing his differences with others. He would know it's okay to say how he feels and assert his wants and needs.
While in therapy, and therapy is what inspired this book, I might as well share with you what I learned and how it relates. In case you missed it, the shy, though cute people-pleasing, insecure hippo represents old me (shocker).
- CODEPENDENCY SYMPTOMS -
Painting Number One AND Story Behind the Story
- GETTING OUR WANTS AND NEEDS MET -
Kitty Wants - A digital ebook I'm making at School
- HOW TO ACHIEVE HEALTHY RELATIONSHIPS -
Painting Hippo n Possum / Relationship Pyramid -
- STANDING UP FOR OURSELVES -
- WHAT TYPE OF RELATIONSHIP ARE YOU IN?
Codependent, Dependent, Interdependent
- LETTING GO