Deep in my underground bunker I have been plotting and scheming while on the surface I’ve been preparing my first novel. There is a hiatus on the novel front at the moment because it’s with someone else, so I’m free to plot and scheme underground.
There are two top secret projects that are being worked on at the moment, both collaborations, and both a wide departure from the humorous novels. The second project will remain a mystery but I am going to reveal the first one now.
I am going to write a young children’s picture book.
Yep, I will try my best to leave out some of the subjects that I’ve mentioned on this blog before; like plaster of paris penis moulds, colourful language, and sex scenes.
It will be a picture book designed for 3-5 year olds, similar to Julia Donaldson’s books, and it will focus on the adventures of a young field mouse called Clever Trevor. There are three good reasons why I want to have a go at this project and I’m not underestimating how hard it’s going to be, by the way.
It’s for my daughter, Sophie
This is the main reason, really. I have twins, a boy and a girl, and my daughter Sophie has special needs. I want to write a story that I can read to her at night designed specifically with her in mind. This means that I want the story to have sensory elements to it that can be used to help develop anticipation as well increase the entertainment value.
My Wife’s an artist
My wife, Claire, went to art school and fancies herself as a bit of an illustrator. She’s very good as well. She was magnanimous when I chose my mate to design the book covers and now I want to get her involved in some other way. She is also a one-to-one carer for an adult with special needs who is incredibly gifted at drawing as well.
The variety of formats
One of the great things with a picture book nowadays is how many versions you can make. There is obviously the print book (although this can come in various sizes and weights) but then there is the interactive eBook, the app, and the sensory specific textured book. I like the idea of creating a whole world around a story.
Even though these are the three main reasons why I want to try my hand at it, there are more. It won’t get in the way of my grown-up writing because once the story is written I will be taking a backseat for all of the rest of production. I would also like to potentially go around schools reading it to young kids and trying to inspire them to read more.
It’s all very exciting and I’m going to sit down in earnest this morning and begin. As usual any progress will be documented here first.