in Monstrous Me

Monstrous Me: Sketches

The Ogre Scheduler

Though the timetable for the Kickstarter and eventual release for Monstrous Me has shifted back a month so, we are still plugging along at a good pace. Last week I received the majority of the sketches for the monsters, and I was impressed with how they are shaping up.

If you’re interested in these early drafts, I threw together a brief video with a few dozen.

Artist Liz is onto color palettes and we will soon be taking monsters to the final stages. This also means dusting off my InDesign skills from my high school journalism days and diving deep into page layouts and typography.

The timeline at this point has the majority of the art arriving by mid-August. Since I’ll have the text mostly ready – for the book, Kickstarter, and accompanying promotional pieces – it should be a matter of incorporating the art over a few days to finalize the campaign. I’d hope for a Kickstarter launch mid-to-late August, to run for a month, and then another two months or so to get the books ordered and delivered. That means a potential Halloween release, which is very fitting.

In addition to a book trailer and Kickstarter video, I am hoping to create a brief animation for each monster, to be released each day of the Kickstarter. Depending on how much the launch and life of the campaign overlap with my return to full-time work, this idea may be sidelined.

From the last round of edit notes to now, the project is currently sitting at 40 monsters. That means some of the ones in the video above won’t be included in the final book, though a few of those leftovers will still be illustrated and find a home online in the near future.

Today I sent out the 3rd draft to the next batch of editors, including a television writer, former principals, and a librarian. Having addressed the notes on the 2nd draft, and having sat with it for a month, I am feeling more and more confident about it. Each monster that’s made it this far is more than a clever name or a improvised situation; the stories are stronger, and more relatable, and I have the editing process to thank for that (and, you know, the editors).

On top of all this, I went to the Society for Children’s Book Writing and Illustrators conference last week. I have all sorts of feelings, about writing and publishing and self-publishing and process and doubt, but I am choosing not to dwell on that overwhelming mountain of information and instead choosing to tackle each next step with this book. Monstrous Me is actually coming alive, and I am still in disbelief.

So, while I wait for new art, and edit notes, I’ll hammer out Kickstarter verbiage, and play around with InDesign, and maybe even go outside.

You know, before the hard work starts.

Also published on Medium.