Day 1: Turning a Song Into a Children's Book
Updated: May 20, 2020
So here's the deal. Just before Christmas last year, I wrote a song, based on an entirely true story, about a parent's frantic search for a little child's Christmas wish... that mom or dad only learned about at the very last minute. It's a touching--and I think very relatable song to anyone who's ever been in that position. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=90rv_WzMtjM
I got some really nice comments from folks who watched the little online video, and I found myself thinking, "Hey, this could make for a great children's story."
Turns out, there's quite a bit more to this proposition than I'd envisioned. There are industry standard type conventions governing everything from total pages, to dimensions, to printing & binding & cover selection, and lots and lots more. It's been really enjoyable learning all about this whole process, and though I realize "no plan survives first contact with reality," I'm very excited to see if I can bring this project to fruition.
I spent several weeks pitching meticulously tailored query emails to publishing houses specializing in kids' picture books but generated no interest whatsoever. So... much like my songwriting career thus far, I'm going to go the self-publishing route.
The project is admittedly a little outside the norm. There are vocabulary "rules" based on learning levels and that sort of thing, all of which I understand and which make perfect sense. The fact that I'm not following a few of them may have something to do with my inability to capture the attention of anyone "in the biz." That's OK. At the end of the day, I think what will make this project unique is the fact that it's really sort of a trifecta: (1) a great, relatable story; (2) that will be captured in a beautifully illustrated book parents will want to read with their kids; (3) supported by a heart-rendering holiday themed song that will help share the story. (Think "Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer")
Of course it's possible this entire adventure will turn out to be yet another trip down the "buy high sell low" plan I've pursued over the years, but I want to give it a try. I'll keep this blog updated, and I hope you'll stop by from time to time check out my progress--or learn from my mistakes :-)