Posts Tagged ‘Carolyn Arcabascio’

For me, getting to work with Carolyn Arcabascio was a dream come true. We worked from a master list of scene options, with Carolyn picking out scenes she liked and making sketches. For the prologue, Carolyn drafted three options. All three were great, but two in particular were spectacular. I first went with option 3 (one of my scene suggestions). I think we spent more time on this sketch and subsequent color drawing than on any other piece. But it never seemed right. At the eleventh hour, I asked Carolyn how hard she’d hit me if I suggested scrapping the thing and instead going with the pinky promise scene you see below (one of her scene suggestions).  Carolyn responded: “There would be no hitting involved!” and told me it wouldn’t be a problem. You sure can’t ask for better than that.

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From the Prologue: Bedtime Tales.

Click on image to enlarge.

Richard: Did you make all these sketches in the same location, Carolyn?

Carolyn: Yes, I do all of my work at a drafting table that’s situated in a little nook of my apartment in Acton, Massachusetts. There’s a bookshelf to my right and a wall of “inspiration” to my left, where I hang prints of other artists’ and illustrators’ work. On either side of my drafting table are drawers of supplies, and stacks of sketchbooks and old paintings. The drafting table faces a window overlooking a quiet street and the woods beyond it.

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From Chapter Two: A Coin of the Realm.

Click on image to enlarge.

Richard: Do you use models when you’re sketching?

Carolyn: I use a combination of models and photo references. If I need to work out the nuances of a character’s posture and really understand the perspective of it, I’ll ask whatever friend or family member is handy to pose for a sketch. Often, I’ll get into the position myself or mimic the facial expression I want to portray in order to get the feel of it. And sometimes, if there’s a character being portrayed multiple times across scenes, I’ll make a rough model of their head out of clay so I’ll have it to refer to.

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From Chapter Four: To Barreth.

Click on image to enlarge.

Richard: When drawing fantastical creatures, do you use bits and pieces of real animals for inspiration, or have you actually seen a wirtle and you’re just not telling us? 😉

Carolyn: No wirtles native to Massachusetts, fortunately! When figuring out the look of fantastical creatures, I use photo references of different animals to understand the way the anatomy might work, and then combine features as I see fit and as the story calls for. To understand the wirtle’s legs and paws, for example, I referred to a series of photographs of show dogs leaping over hurdles. The severely arched, scruffy back was influenced by photos of hyenas on the prowl. The bone-structure of the face ended up being something of a cross between a cow and a warthog, and I wanted the snout to be bare—kind of gross and raw-looking. Add it all up and, voila! We have a wirtle.

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When Lily and Jasper’s uncle disappears, Lily must search for him in the most unlikely of places: the fading realms of her childhood bedtime tales.

Gold Medal Winner of the Moonbeam Children’s Book Award.

Epic fantasy for ages 9 to 99. Visit the Moon Realm

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Copyright © 2011-14 by Richard Due. All rights reserved.

No portion of this website may be used in any manner without the expressed written consent of the copyright holder.

Gibbering Gnome Press, A Division of Ingenious Inventions Run Amok, Ink®

The Moon Realm®

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Crossover

The Moon Realm Invades Barnes and Noble Bookstores Everywhere

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et_TMC_TD

 

I wish I had a more exciting tale to tell, but getting a self-published book into Barnes and Noble is all about time, diligence, and whether or not they want your book.

In a nutshell, here’s how I got the Moon Realm series into Barnes and Noble. Last fall I submitted to their Small Press Dept., at their Headquarters on 5th Ave, in New York. On their website, they said that if I didn’t hear back from them I should resend, as they get 2,000 submissions a week, which means, every once and a while, they have chuck everything and start over. I got a letter back from them maybe two weeks later requesting paperback copies of The Moon Coin (the only Moon Realm book in paper at that time). That was back in November. My next task was to get a distributor or wholesaler. B&N had sent me a list of them. I sent submissions two wholesalers that could work out for me. One replied in a week with a no. The other, Baker and Taylor, took longer. On March 26th, B&N sent me another letter saying they still wanted The Moon Coin, but that since they hadn’t heard from me in a long time, they were going to take their offer off the table 30 days from the date of that letter. That seemed more than fair to me, generous, in fact. It was a bit of a bummer, though, as I’d decided in my mind that Baker and Taylor, not having gotten back to me—I’d submitted to them in January—wasn’t interested in my book. Then, on April 11th, Baker and Taylor sent an email to Gibbering Gnome press saying “We are pleased to inform you that after reviewing your materials, we would like to have your company become a vendor with Baker & Taylor.”

That was a fine day.

Since the second book in my series, The Dragondain, had come out in December, and since my original contact from Barnes and Noble had changed since last November, I decided to send my new B&N contact new copies of both titles. She called a few weeks later to say they were going to order The Moon Coin, and that The Dragondain was now being reviewed by their buyer. During that time, Gibbering Gnome Press set up its account with B&T. I sent copies of books to my contact at B&T at that time, too. Soon, I was in B&T’s system.

On July 18th, the day before I was leaving for vacation, the first two purchase orders from B&T rolled in. So, instead of packing, I spent the evening thumbing through a 55 page document on how to make a proper shipping label for B&T’s warehouse. It involved me—I’m Gibbering Gnome’s typesetter, among other things—generating a label containing six barcodes. I’d never made barcodes before. I mean, I’d order them from Bowkers, of course, but never made them from scratch. By midnight, though, everything was boxed and ready to ship. I did what packing I could, then finished up in the morning. We sent the books off as we left town.

Unrelated to all this, I’d been in contact with a B&N Children’s Book Manager since last summer. Her store is in Utah. She’d contacted me on GoodReads, and wanted to know why my books weren’t in B&N’s catalog, Bookmaster. I’d told her I was trying my best. We kept in contact during this whole process, and, now that my books were in the system, she ordered copies for her store. She’s picked out a display, and Gibbering Gnome Press has sent her posters and postcards adverts.

Now all I need to do is sit back and watch the purchase orders roll in, right? Ha! If only it was so easy! But seriously, my job now is to run around to local B&Ns and independent bookstores, handing out free review copies and letting them know that I’m in B&T, or, in the case of the B&Ns, that I’m in Bookmaster. If I’m lucky, I might be able to get in on a few signings.

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TMC & TD GRG

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Copyright © 2011, 2012 by Richard Due. All rights reserved.
Gibbering Gnome Press,
A Division of Ingenious Inventions Run Amok, Ink®
The Moon Realm®

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“And while this title is considered middle-grade fiction (ages 7-12) due to the ages of its protagonists, it is so much more than that. It is an addictive drug for those of us who have lovingly flipped through its pages. It is the fantastical story you dreamed of while waiting to fall asleep. It is youth brought to life. It is all the things I still wish I could do. Things like have adventures of my very own.”

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JensBookCloset

Click HERE or the image directly above to read the review.

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Which means . . . after I slay a thousand forms, hire TRON to break into B&N’s catalog system, kill the witch, and bring back the broom to Oz . . . after all that . . . The Moon Coin is headed for Barnes & Noble!

Here’s how it happened: back in the fall, Barnes and Noble sent me a letter saying they wanted to carry The Moon Coin in their brick and mortar bookstores. The problem is that B&N doesn’t acquire books from publishers and authors, they get them from distributors and wholesalers.

Well, this week I heard back from Baker & Taylor. I’VE GOT THE BROOM AND I’M HEADING BACK TO OZ! My book is going to be available to B&N, (among many other bookstores), and a 95% of all libraries!

I have no idea how long it’s going to take me to get back to Oz, though. A couple months maybe? There’s just never a roving band of blood-thirsty flying monkeys around when you need one. Have you ever noticed that? But when I do get back, and into the Barnes & Noble catalog, B&Ns everywhere will be able to stock the series!

I’ve already heard from one B&N children’s dept manager who says she already has a special display in mind. She also plans to put up posters! Yikes!

One B&N store down, 722 to go.

In other news, I’m back up on Google Plus: https://plus.google.com/u/0/116346566164783346454

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The Moon Coin is a fine and adventurous read for young adults,

highly recommended.”—Midwest Book Review
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TMC Cover

This just in from the Midwest Book Review:

A good story almost comes alive in our imagination, and it may do just that. “The Moon Coin” begins Richard Due’s Moon Realm series, following young Lily and Jasper, who learn much about the place from their uncle. But when he goes missing, the kids will learn there was more to his stories than just stories, and the secrets behind them will prove dangerous as they are enticing. “The Moon Coin” is a fine and adventurous read for young adults, highly recommended.

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The Moon Coin

Book One / A Moon Realm Novel

Now available in paperback and eBook.

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AmazonBarnes and NobleiTunes iBookstore,
and Second Looks Books.

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Two chapters formatted for ePub, Mobi, or PDF.

Please share these files with your friends. Enjoy.

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Copyright © 2011 by Richard Due. All rights reserved. Gibbering Gnome Press,

A Division of Ingenious Inventions Run Amok, Ink™ The Moon Realm™

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I just got back from a trip to Traverse City, Michigan, where the Traverse City Children’s Book Festival was held in a beautiful old Opera House. It’s lovely town right on the shore of Lake Michigan, and the people there support not one, but two amazing independent bookshops: Horizon Books, and Brilliant Books. (You can get THE MOON COIN in Horizon Books now, btw, just sayin’.)

The Traverse City Children’s Book Festival. I’m in the lower right corner.

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I got to meet a lot of amazing authors at the festival, but for me the most exciting part was meeting the kids: you would have thought they were in a candy store!

Some of the winners on display in the Opera House. (I did NOT arrange these books!)

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After the festival, we packed up, got dressed up, and headed out to the top floor of the tallest building in town: the Park Place Hotel, where the Moonbeam Awards Ceremony was held.

I’m the dude on the far right. Jim Barnes, master of ceremonies, is in the center.

Link to the press release HERE.

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Lastly, I want to mention that the GoodReads Group, Anything Goes, has picked The Moon Coin as their December Book of the Month. Anything Goes is mostly comprised of UK members, but anyone is welcome to join. I’ve been in contact with Chris, a group moderator, and she’s given me permission to put together a little international contest. So get ready for a literary scavenger hunt (drawing off The Moon Coin). The winner will receive a signed, numbered, paperback copy (I will ship this anywhere I can (except to the moon Darwyth; if you’re on the moon Darwyth then you’re on your own; sorry). I’ll post the contest here at Anything Goes on the December the 1st. So if you like scavenger hunts, be on the lookout!

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Traverse City Children’s Book Festival

I’ll be at the festival, reading from The Moon Coin and signing books.

Dates & Location

10:00am to 4:00pm

The annual Traverse City Children’s Book Festival will be held Saturday , November 10, 2012 at:

City Opera House
106 East Front Street
Traverse City, MI 49684-2509
(231) 941-8082

Tickets & Admission

General attendance is free!
No tickets are required

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