Saturday, June 17, 2006

Illustrating, writing, partying, grandpa-ing

I haven't blogged in a few days because...well, frankly, nothing's going on. I finished the frog painting (multi, multi, multi revisions expected). My other projects are on hold, and have been for months. I won't rehash my fears about that situation, the problem is obvious.

My writing life has slowed considerably. I have several picture books cooking, but for whatever reason, when I try to put them on paper, nothing happens. I'm hoping this is just a phase. Maybe, I'll tackle revising 'Bill'.

Received a very cool invite from children's author, Coleen Salley. The soiree will he hosted, next weekend, at her French Quarter condo, and will be attended by authors and illustrators (no editors, or publicists!). I'd love to attend, but with an already overbooked summer schedule, I'm afraid I'll have to miss her cheese grits, bourbon milk punch, and biscuits. Wish I could be there.

Last year, most of my reading involved YA; This year, it's been picture books. I'm starving for adult characters with grown people problems. So, I've started working my way through a pile of books I've been meaning to read. On the adult side, I enjoy historical fiction. In addition, I love rags to riches stories, particularly those of African American men who overcome great odds — Malcolm X; Makes Me Wanna Holler; Finding Fish (don't judge this book by the awful movie); Manchild in the Promised Land, and anything Richard Wright — are among my favorites. I also enjoy Christian inspirational, men's interests. Currently, I'm reading 90 Minutes in Heaven, by Don Piper. Eh?! I'll explain later.

Life at my full-time gig may take on a drastic change. The hours I currently work give me a huge block of time at home. During those hours, I illustrate books, do school visits, write. My boss, however, is leaving. He has been very supportive of my outside endeavors, allowing me to flex my work scheduld around my freelance business, something that isn't popular with everyone. I have no idea if an interim manager, or a new graphics editor would would be as open.

What most unsettles me, is the thought that my position would turn more towards street reporting, creating complex city maps, charts, numbers, and diagrams. These things make my brain spin, but are typical responsibilities for graphic reporters. I'm an all-out art guy. I was paralyzed the last time I had to attend a lively press conference, competiting with TV reporters and cameras — that's just not me. My boss knows that, and has tailored my position to fit my artistic aptitudes and strengths. Maybe I'm just feeling anxious because of the change.

As of today, I've been officially a grandpa for one year.


rindamybyers said...

Happy Father's Day!

Happy Grandpa's Day!

Nancy Miller said...

Hi Don,

My name is Nancy Miller of Miller Illustration (Picture This Blog). I've been meaning to post on your blog. I've found your blog to be entertaining and heartfelt about your passion as a children's book illustrator and writer.

I sympathize with your perdicament with your full-time gig. I work full-time as a graphic designer during the day and night/weekends in children's book illustration. It's a balancing act juggling, work, family and art. I hope your new boss will value your artistic abilities and play to your strengths.

Continued success in your writing and illustrating.

Nancy Miller Illustration

Miss P AKA Her Royal Cliqueness said...

Don, I hope things work out at your full-time gig. I too have a supportive supervisor of my writing duties. However, she serves at the leisure of the Mayor so I often think about what could happen when a new election rolls around (another 3 years). Hopefully I'll be doing writing full-time by least that's the goal!