Author friend Dianna Aston planted the seed. Author friend Cynthia Leitich Smith, in a comment here on my blog, reminded me that I haven't watered it in awhile. It's been my plan to write a picture book biography for some time now. But I keep thinking that someone better, more qualified is probably already writing the story. So I put it off and someone usually does.
The story of Ella Fitzgerald was my first attempt at writing a biography. Before putting pen to paper, I sent an email synopsis of my idea to Andrea Pinkney, my editor on the book Say Hey! She's now a vice president and publisher with Houghton Mifflin. She was already in the midst of writing Ella Fitzgerald : The Tale of a Vocal Virtuosa. Soon A Tisket, a Tasket by Ora Eitan showed up in the bookstores.
So I'm feeling a real sense of urgency to write this biography before someone else does. Is that stupid? And I already have a 2006 calendar and another picture book to illustrate first.
Did some research today on the person I will write about. I'm inspired! I have some things in common with this not so well known but immensly talented African American. I'd like to see this story told, and be the first to tell it as a picture book. Got that deep down in my gut, burning with excitement feeling that author's get when they know they're on to something. I'm assuming they get this feeling, but it may be the oncoming of the flu.
I'd better contact my aunt Eleanora.