|Hernando didn't make the cut this time!|
“You should write a children's book,” said our island friend Caroline Beebe after she read Hernando's Story in our weekly blog of March 29th 2013. It's a whimsical story about a hermit crab who lives near our house.
|Thomas the Cat in my rowboat|
Caroline, Harriet Lowe and I met for lunch at Qubano's on Hidalgo Avenue in early April of 2013. They convinced me to seriously consider the idea. Back home I talked it over with Lawrie, and he said, “Great idea!”
And so the adventure began.
Hernando and I worked together for a couple of weeks, trying to turn his story into a book, but in the end I had to tell him, “I'm sorry Hernando, you just aren't adventurous enough to be the central figure in your own book,” and I turned my attention to my very handsome cat, Thomas.
|Diego - making changes to the illustrations|
Next we solicited assistance from Diego's aunt Mauri Medina to help with the translation from English to Spanish, making the story bi-lingual. Some sections were too lengthy when translated so Diego and I amended, revised and re-worked the story. Then I enlisted the assistance of Christy Dix of On Target Language Services, to re-check the wording for us, adding her revisions and corrections.
|I need a crown please!|
With each revision Thomas supervised, pointing out the important parts that he wanted to remain in the book. Chica our little female cat looked over the pages. She decided she wanted a crown and to be called Princess Chica. Diego gave her a crown and we changed her name. The two beach dogs, Odd and Missy spoke up and added their comments. Missy thought that she should have been the princess. Diego mollified her with a flower behind one ear. Odd-the-Dog reminded us that he had one blue eye and one brown eye. “Yes, we know. See? That's what the illustration shows.”
While Diego was finalizing the illustrations it was my job to find a printer. First I tried various printing companies in Mexico, but the printing prices were more than we could possibly charge for a children's book. The high price is dictated by the necessity to import all of the paper for printing, whereas in the USA or Canada the paper is produced locally. Next I tried printing companies in the USA and Canada, but by the time I paid for shipping and importing the prices were still too high for a small order.
|Hhumf! I should have been the princess.|
|March - the sample book arrives.|
Wow! We were so pleased.
Then came the really big leap of faith – send the balance of the money. Gulp!
|June 2nd in Manzanillo Mexico|
|Gustavo at Almex helping Lawrie and I load 420kg of books|
|Thank you Steve and Chris. You made our day!|
A few hours later as we waited in the lineup at the car ferry docks at Punta Sam we made our two first sales: Chris Shannon and Steve Mattox. Thank you guys, you really made our day.
During the whole process everyone was extremely helpful: Annie and Gold Printing, Erika at Gade Aduanero S.C., Paula at IFS Neutral Marine, and Carla at Grupo Almex, the trucking company.
They gave us such good service, and encouragement, Diego and I are already working on book two.
Lynda & Lawrie
|Celebrating with Diego, Thomas and Sparky|