One of the many wonderful things about being an Indie Author is that I get to work directly with illustrators.

Currently, I’m collaborating with three illustrators. Mina Sanwald has designed my map of MYSTIC. CreateSpace has one of their illustrators designing MYSTIC’s cover. And Muza and I are working together on a picture book.

My life has been a bit crazy this past month. I’ve spent my weekdays helping to teach second and third graders. Their energy and enthusiasm for learning brings me joy. They also spit out phrases like one spunky second grader… “I don’t want to be a nerdgrader!” To which I replied “Thank you for the title of my next picture book.”

Every day with the students is an adventure. By 3:00pm. I’m home and my zoo wants my attention. They’ve been getting very little of it these days. Poor Buddy just wants to go for a walk. He’ll have to wait until January. My late afternoons are spent collaborating and praising illustrators for the incredible work they do. Then I take a deep breath and open MYSTIC for more revising. This is the scariest of all the revisions because once I send it to Create Space to be published… it’s done. I’ve heard of an author who has gone into a book store, taken her book off the shelf, pulled out a pencil and starting editing. Now I understand why. Are stories ever done?

I’ve received permission from Mina Sanwald to show her work on the MYSTIC map. It all began with me meeting Mina’s grandfather at the gym. Over the past year we’ve become friends. He’s a veteran of WWII and a former test pilot of F14’s. At age 86 he still goes to the gym and swims every day. When he told me how proud he was of his granddaughter, the illustrator, I had to ask her if she would help me with a map.I’m very lucky she agreed.

We sent a few emails back and forth and I had a lot of trouble trying to convey what I wanted because I’m not a visual person. There really wasn’t time for Mina to read all of MYSTIC so I did the best I could. Finally, I sent her my hideous drawing of MYSTIC that had been on my wall for years. I was so embarrassed.

I couldn’t believe it when she sent me the first sketch.

From my awful drawing…

Mina was able to send me this. Wow!

Then she topped it with this!

Mina, you’re awesome! Thank you!

MYSTIC Update: MYSTIC will be available either the end of December or early January. As soon as I have a date I will post it. The cover is amazing! Timothy Banks did an incredible job. I can’t wait for you to see it!

An Author’s Journey Part I An Author’s Journey Part II An Author’s Journey Part III

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