Tuesday, May 29, 2012
Accompanying any book deadline wrap is a moment of clarity. Perhaps the afterglow comes from looking up after days at my drawing table and computer. I become singularly minded in those last moments, stepping away and coming back, pacing the studio, leaning in my chair as I pick apart and rework, determining what suits my needs as a creator in the playground of the publisher's outlines. (I draw for me, for my satisfaction, for my fulfillment. I am happy and fortunate someone wants to pay me for it.) After the files are sent to the publisher, I return to the normal world. I have a fresh perspective of most things, even the mundane ones, like, I should really clean out the studio closet.
This morning the roughs for the third book in Nathan Bransford's dynamite series Jacob Wonderbar--Jacob Wonderbar and the Instellar Time Warp--went off to the publisher, Dial Books for Young Readers. The editorial team at Dial is stellar. Thoughtful and thorough, I have been in good hands for the whole trip.
The moment I realized I was drawing Jacob and the gang for the last time was bittersweet. Happy and proud of the work I've done in the previous books, and even more so of the work I've gotten to do with the new title, so ends a two year journey. (My travels are far from over, as we have revision notes, revision art, and final art to go.) I am a character based illustrator and author and come to like the people I am drawing or writing about. I'll miss Jacob and the gang and the world in which they live.
The list of things to be done--new site, updated blog, finishing up children's book manuscripts--is large. For a day or two, in this time between the notes from Dial, I bask in the relief of the deadline completed, trying to ignore the ones already beckoning my attention.
The latest in the series, Jacob Wonderbar for President of the Universe, has been out for a little over a month now. Head over to your local bookstore to pick up a copy if you haven't already. Or, I guess, pick it up on Amazon.com.