Saturday, September 29, 2007

Molly's Book Progress

The Pirate Daughter's Promise

Graphic Garden

Chronicling the birth of Molly's book from start-to-finish

I thought it would be fun to track Molly's book progress for anyone who would enjoy taking the journey with us.
Molly has been writing since she was eight. She loved the Baby-sitters Little Sister book series, and her writing was much like that. Then, a few years later, she fell in love with The Lord of the Rings and wrote a fantasy trilogy and later books four and almost five. Sometimes when you write something for a long time, as she did, you need a break and begin writing a different story or something altogether different. And because she had by this time fallen in love with Pirates of the Caribbean, she began a new story with a pirate era called The Pirate Daughter's Promise. This story is very special to her. Sometimes a story just comes, just like that, and it took her only three weeks to write it. Of course then comes the editing which she has done over the last couple of years with the dream of getting her book published. In the meantime she wrote the sequel to this story which is called Every Tear, which is in the editing stage now, hopefully to be published as well. So here follows the time line of our journey, mother and daughter, writer and author.
September 21st - Molly and I entered into the agreement with the publishing company to begin publishing her book. It's all been a little slower to begin than we had anticipated, but it is a pricey endeavor for her, $3,000 worth, so she was careful to find out everything up front, all the future costs, etc. and had the agreement checked by our lawyer to make sure. Jack and I gave her money for graduation, to start this part of her life which she fully intends and hopes will become a life-time career. She's worked hard over the summer months and has the rest of the money saved up so the publishing is all paid for, and now we wait. The process is interactive though. She has a place online where she will work with them to make the cover of her book, and she has drafted me to write up the back of the book and the author bio and also the catalog description. It's all very exciting and there is already an ISBN number for her book which I thought was pretty neat. It will be listed in the online catalog of the publishing company. We should have a finished book in our hands in just a few months, and I will be anxious to unveil it here when I can.

bookcover September 25th - She picked the page/text layout yesterday and sent in her manuscript so they can begin editing. She purchased this photo for the cover of her book. I'm so excited about all of this. We still can't quite get over the fact that it's actually reality.
text template
October 2nd - Molly's project manager called yesterday to touch base with her about her book. I am glad she was home. I decided yesterday to make a concentrated effort to get the back of her book cover written. I had been unable to get settled into it in these last days, so Molly had gone searching for how to write a "blurb", how many words, etc. So she wrote a couple of paragraphs, like a skeleton. Unless it is my own writing, I am much better at editing. Give me something already written and I can re-write it...but to just outright write something for you is harder. I really wanted it to have a good start, something to draw you in, as I think the back of the book or the description of one is such an important selling point. So I took what she had written, added to it, and I am really happy with how it turned out. They will re-write it...that actually costs $175...but at least we have done our part. So, even if they change it drastically...this is what we have submitted for the back of Molly's book:

The circumstances of life made Daniel McHenry a pirate. Rescuing young Grace who had been kidnapped by his cruel pirate captain changed Daniel’s life. But though his life had been changed in eternal ways, and he had begun a new life with Grace, the consequences of his secret past catch up with Daniel and set the stage of the life of his young daughter.

Skylar McHenry knew the love of her parents and a doting grandfather until her fifth year was marked by the tragic loss of her mother. When her father’s secret past comes to light, they flee to a life at sea and though Daniel now robs pirates to return the stolen goods, his ship is captured by authorities, and he is hung for piracy. Having long since lost her grandfather’s affection because of her father’s reputation, Skye grows up in an orphanage, little more than a servant, shunned by everyone around her.

Now a young woman, each day Skye faces is marked by some new struggle. Her only hope has been to rely on her Heavenly Father’s care and comfort and the solace of her best friend, Will, who has become more than dear to her. Their love for each other grows stronger every day, tucked close in their hearts, though Will waits for the right time to tell her of his love.

Just when an unexpected encounter with her grandfather gives Skye a small glimmer of hope that things might change in her favor, her world is shattered. She is woken in the night by cannon blasts echoing through the city. Pirates storm the orphanage, drag her away into the night, and force her aboard their ship. The cruel captain’s intentions are clear. He will learn, through any means necessary, the location of the treasure collected and hidden by Daniel McHenry. For Skye to divulge the location would mean breaking the last promise she made to her father. She’s certain she never will, but what happens when the lives of those dearest to her are at stake?

The Pirate Daughter’s Promise, a story for girls young and old, is full of daring high seas adventure, sweet wholesome romance, surprising discoveries, unlikely new friends, and the reward of trusting in God even when life seems impossible.
November 7th, 2007 - We had fabulous news yesterday. Molly heard from her project manager at the publisher's, and they emailed her manuscript edits. I was really tickled for her because there were only a few points she needs to clarify and the rest was just various words here and there throughout the manuscript which were added or taken out. The best part was the editor's note about the manuscript:
"This was a real page-turner for me and I felt like it was almost a true account of some of your ancestors. Well done. A beautiful account of God’s care and protection and those who had faith in Him during severe trials. Your bio indicates that you are a recent school graduate, and I want to especially commend you on your writing skills and encourage you to keep writing. I also congratulate your home school teacher(s) on giving you a fine education."
Well, needless to say, Molly was nearly jumping out of her skin with excitement after that. We all tell her how much we love her story, but to hear praise from your editor is something altogether different. She will work on the manuscript now, incorporating the changes, and then send it back. I am not sure how long after that it is typeset. We are waiting also to see what they have done for the book cover.
Thursday, December 20, 2007 - Molly is deep into writing a new book, the third in this series. The Pirate Daughter's Promise is coming along nicely. She sent her author-approved edited manuscript back today which means it goes to the typesetter now. That is really exciting because hopefully the back and forth with the manuscript from now on will just be quick checks on her part and once it goes to print she will have a book in her hands about three weeks later.
So, I think it will take less time to the end now than it has from the beginning to now. She was not completely satisfied with the book cover they sent back for her approval. She provides the photo and they make it into a cover. This is a resized version of what they sent back. I was disappointed the title text was just in a flat white. At the least, I think it should look more antique. It just felt like I wish I could get my hands on it and change it. Molly felt the same. She does a lot of photo editing so she knows how it could look, but on the other hand, it costs a very lot per hour to have them do extra, and I'm not even sure if that is an option. On the other hand, in my opinion, the book cover is vitally important. So I thought she should send them a screen shot of what she would like or is hoping for so that she does all she can to make it what she would like. She'll send this screen shot below and more details of what she would like. Hopefully they can come to an agreement.
Friday, January 11, 2008 - Molly's typeset manuscript came yesterday! That was just so exciting to see. It is in PDF form, pages exactly like they will look printed up. This is the first page of Chapter One.
page one of Molly's book
So now she must read through the manuscript again to make sure the chapter and page numbers line up. Then, it will be a few back and forth emails after that. She sends it back, any changes are again typeset, she gets it back again to approve. Then it goes to the Proof Reader, then to typeset, and then to Molly again to be approved. After that it goes to Pre-press and then to her again, I think. But after she signs off on it then it will finally go to print and she will have a book in her hands 3 weeks from then.
Friday, January 25, 2008 - Molly received her revised book cover today, and she is pleased with the changes they made. So I think this is what the cover will look like. You'll notice that she chose a pen name. I had thought she was firm on just wanting to use her real name, but when we talked about it she said, no, she just hadn't given it any thought because she had no idea what she would do otherwise. I encouraged her to use a pen name for a few different reasons, but then came picking one which seemed hard as nothing came to mind and how do you just pick some random last name? So she began to pray about it and suddenly, just like that she thought of Evangeline. When she first told me, I just didn't know what I thought but in the next little while, the more I thought of it the more I liked it! It holds real meaning for her, and I think it really fits. So this is exciting as it gets ever closer.
bookcover
Thursday, March 6, 2008 -
fullcoverlayout We got Molly's full cover layout the other night. I was just amazed how beautiful it looked with the back looking so antique. Molly is so pleased. After the proofreader checks this cover layout, I think there are only a few steps left, the ones below.
10) Author-approved text to pre press
11) Printer ready text to author
12) Author signs off on authorization to print
13) Text goes to print (books reach author in just under 3 weeks)

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Love This Weather

It was such a beautiful day today. I wish days like this could happen more often. Yesterday and today, Jack went to the woods with the kids after work, to cut wood for our winter supply. Our house is old and drafty, so we go through a lot of firewood. Jack will probably take a week off soon to get more wood cut and begin all the winterizing jobs. I am happiest when they are all out there together. It's safer for everyone. Jacob has been cutting wood in the afternoons, and he's been cutting down trees . . . which is fine, they're dead and ready for firewood, but it's very dangerous and Jack is concerned. He calls them "widow-makers." I cautioned Jake and told him what Jack said, but he just said, "I'm not married." speechless

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

God's Mercies Are New Every Morning

I am so thankful for that. No matter how hard something is, the morning always brings new strength.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Molly’s Book Cover

bookcover I think I'm going to make a page for the progress of Molly's book. She picked the page/text layout yesterday and sent in her manuscript so they can begin editing. She purchased this photo for the cover of her book. I'm so excited about all of this. We still can't quite get over the fact that it's actually reality.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

A Walk Through the Hemlocks

This morning we went as a family out to the woods. It was so peaceful and beautiful out there. We walked through the hemlocks and then sat by the river for awhile.

a walk in the hemlocks

Here is a picture of Molly and Jacob.
I always love these pictures we take occasionally and remember how annoyed Molly gets with Jake when he won't let her arms go. LOL

Jacob and Molly and the tree

Here's some fall color. I'll miss it when it's gone.

fallcolor

Friday, September 21, 2007

A Book in the Works

We had quite an exciting space of time this morning. Molly and I entered into the agreement with the publishing company to begin publishing her book. It's all been a little slower to begin than we had anticipated, but it is a pricey endeavor for her, $3,000 worth, so she was careful to find out everything up front, all the future costs, etc. and had the agreement checked by our lawyer to make sure. Jack and I gave her money for graduation, to start this part of her life which she fully intends and hopes will become a life-time career. She's worked hard over the summer months and has the rest of the money saved up so the publishing is all paid for, and now we wait. The process is interactive though. She has a place online where she will work with them to make the cover of her book, and she has drafted me to write up the back of the book and the author bio and also the catalog description. It's all very exciting and there is already an ISBN number for her book which I thought was pretty neat. It will be listed on Amazon and B&N and the online catalog of the publishing company. We should have a finished book in our hands in just a few months, and I will be anxious to unveil it here when I can.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Movie Review - Flywheel

flywheel We did watch this movie, Flywheel, since I last mentioned Facing the Giants. We loved Flywheel too, very much. It spoke to me more, personally, than Facing the Giants, but I loved them both. I really hope you will have an opportunity to see both movies. As I mentioned, they are low-budget films, but the Kendrick brothers tell a story so well it will draw you in and leave a lasting impression. I sure hope they have a new movie in the works.

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Lessons I Learned in the Dark

lisaDo you remember Blair from The Facts of Life? I have to confess I never cared for the show much so I don't remember watching and Blair was the person I would have had the least in common with. It was interesting to me some years back to find out that Blair, Lisa Whelchel in real life, and I have much in common. I will let you get to know her on your own if you care to and just say that I love her web site, Lisa Whelchel.com. I receive her newsletter by email and it is always a joy to read. She is so open, so generous and real. In this last newsletter she mentioned her friend, Jennifer Rothschild, and it contained a picture of a book written by Jennifer Rothschild. The cover looked so familiar to me that I realized it was likely in my bookcase so I got up right away to see. I was overjoyed to find that it was. It is called Lessons I Learned in the Dark. I just have a feeling that this book will really minister to me right now. I am and have been going through some particularly hard things lately, for a long time really, and it is always comforting when you know that the Lord is supplying you with things designed to meet you where you need. There was one thing I read last night that got the color crayon treatment which is how I highlight my books, with color crayons. "We don't lean on God until fear makes us feel shaky and weak." Isn't that so sad but true? I am always, always thankful that God is there, am always mindful that He is there, but I get busy and overwhelmed and forget to lean. So anyway, getting Lisa's newsletter the other day was like getting a letter from a sweet friend, and I wanted to share that so that you can get to know her also. It is well worth your time as she is delightful, and I so look forward to meeting her.

Sunday, September 2, 2007

Milwaukee Zoo

We toured the Milwaukee zoo on Thursday and that was just a pure delight. The zoo is beautiful, full of wooded areas and boarded walk-ways. We saw so many things that were just incredible to look at.

I was especially entranced by this King Vulture. I love color and the sight of his head up close was just the most amazing thing. Molly said I took quite enough pictures of him.


Here is a photo showing the back of his head. I apologize if my fascination is rare, but the intricacy of these birds and animals was just a sight to behold.



The cats were another fascination.
We could have watched them all day.











And one more absolutely silly zoo photo.
A bird with . . . eyelashes!!!


We went to the public museum the next day. There were multiple delights there as well, but one of the highlights was the butterfly room where we walked around with amazingly colorful and interesting butterflies flitting round our heads. Here are a few photos.