Monday, September 12, 2011

Dreams Coming True

Let me get sappy for a moment.

My next picture book, Road Work Ahead, will be coming out this Thursday. I'm celebrating this book in a special way because this book is my first, honest-to-goodness, 32 page hardcover trade picture book. Yes, its got a dust jacket and everything, with my name and bio on the back flap.

I think I've waited 10+ years for this.

As an aspiring illustrator, I would walk through the children's section at Barnes & Nobles, looking through all the books, wishing someday, just one day, I'll have a book with my name on it. The idea of having my name and bio on the back flap was a huge deal to me.

For the past 5 years or so, I've gotten a chance to work on some amazing projects: books, games, puzzles, apps. Time flies and I am still in disbelief of how my body of work has grown with a portfolio I can be proud of. I'm grateful for all the people who gave me a chance- art directors, editors, designers, fellow illustrators, and most of all, my rep. I'm even grateful for the naysayers- yes, they are out there but they only pushed me to work harder to prove them wrong.

I've been getting many emails these days from other illustrators asking me for advice. I'm always really flattered and still in a bit of disbelief that I'm now on the other side, to be considered knowledgeable enough to be giving out insight. After all, I'm just like most artists out there- I still struggle with creativity, have insecurities, and always looking for the next gig.

But I want to say dreams do come true. Work hard. Believe. Is there enough cheesiness in this post?

Ok, let me get off my soap box. I'll be back on Thursday with more Road Work Ahead updates!

37 comments:

Debbie Meyer said...

Hurray for reaching your goals!! I'm proud of you, Jannie! I have that same goal, so I completely understand your excitement. Congratulations, and may you have many more hardcover books with real bookjackets to go along with them! :D

Lisa M Griffin said...

That is wonderful! Congratulations and to many, many more!!! :)

Monica Lee said...

I think it is terrific and you should enjoy every moment of it all!

Manola C. said...

Great Jannie!!! :) Congratulations! And I absolutely think this is just the first of a long series!! Really really happy for you! <3

sassypackrat said...

Congrats on this great achievement!

Redheaded Stepchild said...

Congrats Jannie! Thanks for sharing this with us!

Andi Butler said...

I don't think you have nearly enough cheese! Congratulations on this HUGE milestone!! Best wishes for many many more!

a : )

Laura Zarrin said...

Yay! You're inspiring us all. Can't wait to see it in stores.

Michelle Henninger said...

This is so fabulous Jannie!! I agree with Andi, not nearly enough cheese!! I have the same dustjacket dream!! You are an inspiration!!

Eren said...

So wonderful Jannie! Congratulations!!

Nina Crittenden said...

Rock on, Chickengirl!!! You're awesome!!!

Nina Seven said...

congrats, jannie! i'm so happy for you to have reached your goal - so exciting! you really are an inspiration!

Suzanne Del Rizzo said...

Hurray for you Jannie!! It must feel so amazing to see that dust-jacket and pinch yourself to see that is IS real!! May this be the first of many!! You inspire us all :)

Jennifer said...

Congratulations, Jannie! Letting out a big cheer for you over here! :-)

Denver Brubaker said...

'Grats!

Diandra Mae said...

Agree with everyone. You are fabulous, Jannie and I am SO happy you are finally getting to reach this milestone! Enjoy the joy and giddiness you feel right now. ;)

Jennifer A. Bell said...

Congratulations, Jannie! I've always loved your illustrations and I'm excited to see this one at the bookstore!

life without novacaine said...

SO awesome Jannie! You really are a fantastic artist and all your hard work is paying off with the realization of one of your goals! Hooray for you! : D

Laura Wood said...

Congratulations!! It is so happy to hear that and gives me so much hope... thanks!!

lil kim said...

CONGRATS JANNIE!!!! You deserve it with all your hard work. I you ARE an inspiration to everyone around you, and may this be the first of many dust jackets!!

xoxoxo

Ray Ferguson said...

Congratulations!!! I am very happy for you and wish you tons of luck!

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Heather said...

CONGRATULATIONS to YOU! I am so happy for you! YAY! You are very inspiring!

Kaili said...

Oh I love this post, sappiness and all! Thanks for being such an inspiration to meee! :D

Elizabeth Caldwell said...

YAAAAAAAYYYYY! What a dream come true! So happy for you Jannie! I can only imagine what you are feeling! =)

monika viktoria said...

Lovely and inspiring blog post to read, as an aspiring book illustrator myself, I fall into the category of simply dreaming of seeing my own name on a book one day - fantastic to read about dreams coming true, congratulations!

Eric Barclay said...

This is so awesome. A heartfelt congratulations. Look forward to adding this to our library.

Sam Bock said...

Aw, I love this. Like I said before, you are living the dream that I want! I do the very same thing when I walk into book stores now. It is my passion and it is something I continue to strive for everyday. This is SUCH a great accomplishment...congratulations!!!

Jennifer Noel Bower said...

Congratulations, Jannie! And thank you for being so inspiring.

Edrian Thomidis said...

You should be proud of yourself! hard work pays off! Congratulations and keep up the good work! I am sure this is the beginning of only bigger and greater things!

I can only hope to be writing a similar post one day...

erica said...

It is a HUGE deal! Savor it, do a dance, buy yourself something to commemorate it, whatever works for you... heartiest congratulations!

Natascha Rosenberg said...

Congratulations! It's a great gift after 10 years work. Great!

Alicia Padrón said...

Awesome, awesome, AWESOME Jannie!!! I'm so happy for you... for real!! This is the first of many jackets my dear.. I just know it. :o)

xoxo
Ali

Kelly Light said...

I have to add another dollup of awesome sauce. And a hug!

yoon see said...

Congrats Jannie and you really deserve this:)

You have always been a positive and sunshine person to me. So happy to be here to witness your joy and happiness!

Now let's prepare the drum, yes yes...many more to come and more to celebrate!

Kathy Weller said...

Jannie you are AWESOME and such an inspiration! I'm suruised this is your first hard cover trade book! (What about Reindeer Rebellion? I can't locate it right now but I thought that was h/c) Regardless I'm so thrilled for your milestone!!! I've appreciated your work (and work ethic!!!) for years, and I'm so thrilled for you!!! XOXOXO

Mike Boldt said...

Massive congrats to you Jannie! May this only be the start of your "dreams coming true"! I'm ordering this right now for my son. He happened to walk into my office just as I had your blog on-screen and he just wouldn't stop asking questions.

Best!

-Mike