The book launch continues at a steady pace. Last week I was in an infant school with year 2, some of whom were at the school when I chatted with them about the ideas behind ‘So many answers’. It was great to show them the finished book and talk together about all the processes needed to get from an idea to the book being launched.
We giggled about some of the pictures, and what they reminded them of – and the times they had asked something that had that same answer!
“I like the cake one best”
“My favourite is the feet – little lovely baby feet in a heart”
I had the opportunity to read the book with them. And afterwards they gave me feedback!
“It makes me feel happy”
“I’m thinking about how some things don’t feel fair”
“It reminds me about sharing”
“God loves everyone”
“Can I buy the book?”
I left them wondering and planning some writing of their own (can’t wait to go back and hear all about it), and left them with the challenge to think about other answers God sometimes gives us when we ask him things.
Who’d have thought it… an author & illustrator, and I’m an introvert!
The concepts, the writing, the imagining. The doodling, drawing, editing – all of it I love. I love watching as my imaginings take shape as a book. I love watching as people read my books and enjoy.
But I’m self-publishing, and here’s where it starts to get interesting. I have to publicize, plan and get these books ‘out there’ too! And then it gets scary. I’m so out of my comfort zone.
With ‘So many answers’ I have stepped up the pace a little, and really pushed myself. I have contacted other bloggers cheekily asking if I can guest post about my book. If you missed them, I have a guest post on #includedbygrace and on #flamecreativekids I have emailed people and asked if they will write words of endorsement, have contacted Christian organisations also seeking to support Christian families to let them know my book exists and how helpful it will be for families.
‘A little book that engages with some big theology. With honesty, intelligence and humour, ‘So Many Answers!’ takes us on a journey of words and pictures to remind us that God’s love and desire for his children is unconditional, unfailing and often unexpected.’ Bishop Paul Williams
Still in the pipelines are a launch party and visits to local schools with one confirmed, and others still to approach.
If you have read ‘So many answers’, I’d love it if you could leave a review on Amazon to let others know what you thought about it! (I told you, I really am pushing myself with this whole book launch thing!)
It’s a new year! Inevitably I’m looking back over 2017 and looking forward to the writing adventures to be found in 2018.
In 2017 I got stuck into writing monthly devotions for a Christian SEND family network over in the States, and it seems that 2018 will introduce me to a bigger team, and bigger audience, over there as ‘Snappin Ministries’ joins with ‘Key Ministry’ and I continue to contribute as a writer with them. I’m not sure yet what that will look like but am excited to be part of something as it grows and expands it’s support of families like mine and the churches that they seek to be part of.
In the spring of 2017 I piloted a school experience day based on ‘My Easter Egg Hunt’. We had a lot of fun delivering it, and had some wonderfully positive feedback from children and from teachers. The story opened up the meaning of Easter very naturally. This material will be made available in the coming weeks – I’ll keep you posted!
I celebrated ‘My Jesus Family’ at Pentecost…
Of course another highlight was also launching ‘Angels Singing’, and being encouraged by stories of people of all ages finding it to be a book that created space for them to reflect and be still with God. We also explored the possibilities of communal contemplative colouring, and loved the way it included so many, often those on the edges.
So what will 2018 bring?
I am waiting to hear back from a publishing company about a submission – a book I am very excited about which explores what the Bible says about God answering prayer. So again I will let you know when I hear what’s next for that one!
I am working on collecting together more contemplative colouring, and imagining the possibilities of producing materials for children’s scrap-booking with God.
As I’ve said I will be writing regularly with ‘Key Ministry’, but am also talking with a UK based network to see how I might contribute too.
And then of course there’s the back burner project that I’m hoping to revisit this year – the book that began this whole writing adventure for me. It’s about time you met ‘My Curly Granddad’.
Plus all the little sparks and ideas that happen whenever I see a fresh blank page. I am officially loving this adventure – who knew there was a writer in me waiting to get a word in edge ways!
Pentecost!! The birthday of the church…
Time to celebrate My Jesus Family!
- A group of family and friends; young and old, and in-between!
- paper people cut outs
- coloured pens
- scraps of patterned paper & fabric
The challenge: to dress the paper people and talk about many of the wonderful friends we each have in our Jesus Family where we live.
- together time
- celebration of people in our churches and what they mean to us
- discovering new things about each others’ gifts
- moments of thankfulness for being part of Jesus’ Family
Afterwards we settled down to read ‘My Jesus Family’ together. With characters we could relate to, with all their feelings and strengths we found we were chatting together about what we love (and what we may find difficult) about being part of this amazing family.
Why not celebrate Pentecost this week!
So, how would you describe church?
Dictionaries say this:
building used for public Christian worship.
‘the church was largely rebuilt at the end of the 15th century’
‘some people go to church every Sunday’
‘after church we went to a restaurant’
in names ‘St Luke’s Church’
a Christian denomination:
‘the Methodist Church’…
Christians worshipping in a particular place
‘She is a member of this church.’
What would you say? How do you talk about church with your children?
‘My Jesus Family’ can start conversations, and has bible verses to look at together. Think about church from a child’s perspective…
Lots of the stories we love have rescuers, heroes who come and save the day. When A was little he loved the superheroes, and we had quite a few little figures that he carried around with him and played rescuing with. T now has the ones we kept, and still the stories of rescue get played out. When we go to my Mum’s holiday flat, we always get a pack of those little boxes of breakfast cereal, and without fail once they are eaten these boxes get carefully peeled apart, turned inside out & glued back together (by me!) ready to become houses or blocks of flats to become scenes for just this kind of play…
But we are not at the flat! (and we are creatures of habit) So this week we will be veg printing a city scene instead…
chatting and wondering
I want to talk together about Jesus coming because we needed rescuing.
I want to wonder together about Jesus being like a superhero.
I want to ask questions together about the rescue…
time to read
In ‘My Easter Egg Hunt’ read about Phoebe’s visit to Ah Li’s house, and find out about the Passover rescue and how that helps us understand why Good Friday is good!
Also this week, find the story of Moses and the first Passover night in a children’s Bible to read.
At the moment I am working on some new ideas, which I love doing – it’s an exciting part of the process of getting a book out there, it’s the pioneer stage where anything feels possible and you can’t help but be excited about where it might all end up!
So I have been writing about our experience of prayer – more specifically asking prayers, and have been thinking and wondering how our feelings about these moments in prayer reveal how we picture God.
Next week I’m back in my gorgeous church infants school to show them where I have got to so far, and hopefully to imagine together. I can’t wait to chat together and find out what my words make them feel, and think and what they are reminded of.