BUT!… With One T. (Ask for it by name!)

BUT  art

BUT! My next children’s book has been released to the world (ISBN 978-0-8234-3046-8 if you needed that info). When you ask for it at book stores, be sure to use your best Katharine Hepburn accent as you say, “Yes, it’s called But!, with ONE T.” I will be that proud author who teaches very young giggling kids the difference between spelling “but” with one “T” or two.” But! has lived in my head since WAY back when Nickelodeon Magazine was around. Back then I would send one page pitches to editor Chris Duffy and he would then call me up (this was before email and texting), and ask the butler if I was available to talk to him. Ten minutes later when I got to the phone, Chris would do his best Peter Lorre impersonation and inform me that I was NOT funny. I told him that the cartoon I had submitted about two pirate birds and a birthday party was a sure hit, but he was having none of it. I told him his Peter Lorre impersonation stunk, and he has since cut me out of his Will. Well, I turned that cartoon into a rough book called “Pirate Birthday” that was rejected several places due it’s complicated sub plot involving cowboys, space men and how to kill off the adult in the story. Always have to get rid of the adult in the story. I was ready to set my rough book on fire and leave it on Chris Duffy’s door step. And ring his bell and run. After I put dog poop under it. On Christmas Eve. And Christmas morning. But then the good people at Holiday House showed a bit of interest.

“We like it,” they said cautiously. “BUT…”

“But?” I asked.

“But… it needs something.” They said with a cold stair.

And with that, one of those light bulbs went off inside my head. And then it went on again. My book was born agai…er, yet once more. A painful birth at home in one of those birthing pools. But… enough about that. If you have kids, run out and buy my book! Remember, BUT with one T! In the meantime, have a look at the cover and some inside art above and below.

BUT! Cover

BUT! page

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Thrilling CMYK Thursday (With an Elf!)

elf and cat

Usually I post something here on Thursday. ANYTHING as long as people look at it and drive up traffic on my web site so that I can get high paying advertisements and pay myself to constantly post notices about how I don’t play Candy Crush. Being that it’s summer and my heat rash is slowing down my work, I’ll just say that I’ll be taking the next month off as far as posting art goes. This frees up a lot of time for scratching and picking at my heat rash. So much time… Before I take a break though, here is proof that I’m almost done with my next book, as we are now doing the ever important CMYK tests! These test are delicate and hard to explain to you non-artist types. So just focus on the cute little elf. Yes, what would a children’s book be without an elf! Again, I’ve said too much!

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“Book Expo America… a semi illustrated account”

It was an honor to entertain book buyers who came from as far away as California to visit our studios in sunny Gowanus Canal, Brooklyn and see where the magic is made. First they visited the studio where Greek expert George O’Connor takes naps and draws the “Olympians.” He also showed off his upcoming Children’s book “If I Had a Raptor,” The book buyers thought his studio was TOO small.

We then visited the studio where I work and drink many cups of coffee. I showed them my next Children’s book “But!” and wowed the buyers with stories of how much rejection I’ve endured in order to make it as an author-illustrator. By wowed I mean they did the best they could to hold back tears. The book buyers thought my studio was TOO big.

Then we visited the studio of Andres Vera Martinez. In the past he’s illustrated a wonderful comic about Babe Ruth among other projects but this day showed off his latest children’s book, “Little White Duck.” The book buyers thought that Andres’ Studio was JUST rig…wait, plot twist, they thought Andres’ studio was TOO small also.

The next day I visited BEA central at The Javits Center in Manhattan which involved a pleasant visit with Holiday House, the publisher of my book, “But!” Mr. Magic School Bus himself, Bruce Degen stopped by to politely look at my book and proclaiming it a “sure fire hit,” before being dragged off to sign books elsewhere.

After wandering the Expo with no direction, I visited Tucker Stone at the Nobrow booth, and unexpectedly ran into Farel Dalrymple who showed me his great looking First Second book, The Wrenchies. Obviously it was all down hill from there but I did avoid buying a 15 dollar hot dog inside the Convention Center. Thus, happily ever after and The End!

Note: Below WAS to be a photo essay on the above events but my camera ran out of film Half way through all the BEA events, thus these are what few pictures I took, and then a few drawings which serve to accurately illustrate events I didn’t get photos of. Enjoy!

BEA post2


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Cartoons, Children's books and humor