Today is November 1st, and the start of PiBoIdMo 2013! If you haven’t yet signed up for Tara Lazar’s annual picture book challenge, I inspire you to jump in before the day ends.PiBoIdMo 2013 Registration is OPEN! If you are on the fence, slide on down to join the almost 1000 writers and illustrators already committed to this year’s PiBoIdMo challenge: one new idea for a picture book, every day in November. Plus you get daily inspiring posts from published authors and illustrators. And then there is our PiBoIdMo community as a whole.
As a participant myself, I am probably more excited for you, especially all the newcomers. Pat yourself on the back!
Outside, it is dark and rainy. The time is 5:30 a.m. From my writing room I hear the stirrings of my twenty-two-month-old grandson. I send “Do not wake up yet” vibes through the wall. His Halloween pirate sideburns and mustache are still visible on his sweet baby face. After a long bath last night, and gentle scrubbing, the Pirate won. Soon I will be taking out the Thomas trains, fire trucks, and ambulances, but not yet. I have enough time to jot down two picture book ideas which came to me during the night. I record them on my PiBoIdMo files cards. Sometimes, the light bulb comes as a title, other times a main character. If bits of dialogue precede all else, I record that on the back side. Then, throughout the month, I return to these cards to add more information/inspiration.
Before my pint-sized pirate hollers for my attention, I wanted to say “Thank you!” to Tara Lazar, to all the other guest bloggers, and to every PiBoIdMo 2013 participant. I wish I could give individual responses to each person who kindly commented on my pre-PiBoIdMo post. http://taralazar.com/2013/10/28/pre-pibo-day-4-betsy-devany/ So . . .
To everyone who read my story, thank you. To everyone who commented, thank you. (I will continue to check comments throughout the month, for those who read the post at a later date.) Thank you for your kind words and support of SMELLY BABY. For those seeking a How To Get Fired From Cooking Thanksgiving Dinner pass, contact Norman. I have a pressing middle grade revision to complete during the month as well, so he has volunteered to be my secretary. To anyone who can offer tips on learning to cook, thank you in advance. To the people who asked for a playdate with Norman, he would love that. He has been to some conferences, and he has even played piano with a hedgehog at a hotel. To those who do not have a tricycle, yes, skateboards will work, as will sleds, kid-sized cars, and anything else with wheels. Feel free to add tires to a refrigerator-sized box. Whatever suits your style!
All of your comments made me smile and laugh. I am so fortunate to be a part of this community. And to Erik, the kid who reviews books, a special thank-you to you. This Kid Reviews Books | A Place for Kids and Grown-Ups to … Keep up the great work! You rock.
Remember: Have fun. Let go. Feed your inner child.
Read picture books. Lots of them.
Play with your kids, your grandkids.
Wear funny glasses, tutus, hats.
In our house, Ballerina Bella the dog has been coaching one of the Baby Bossy Frogs. “Don’t think too much, little frog,” she says. Ballerina Bella the dog is very wise, and I tend to follow her advice, too. So listen to your stuffies.
Lastly, I challenge you to set aside the goal of getting published. At least during this month. As Nancy C. says, it can cause anxiety, and I believe it comes between you and reaching your full potential as a writer. Rather than focus on getting published, focus on your prose. Time is your greatest gift. This is my secret to landing an agent and my first book contract.
If you get stuck along the way, reach out and I will try to help.
Know I believe in all of you and your ability to see this challenge to the end.
Norman has volunteered to help me blog during November. He and Uni the unicorn have already started writing down their picture book ideas. He even has a pink car to ride down the PiBoIdMo hill with us.