One of the Other Handy Things about Slowness

Photo: Nocturnes & Lullabies, Book CoverThe gradual approach to the making of my art-and-poetry books means that, while the process itself is invisible to the naked eye and makes it look pretty much like I’m sitting around twiddling my thumbs for years at a time, I have built up quite an inventory of miscible ingredients for the non-nefarious sort of book-cookery. So I have another book ‘going live’ on my button-push today (a little gift to myself, admittedly): Nocturnes & Lullabies (poems of nighttime set with my landscape photography). And I have one in proof-production that is of songs and dances and romances, A Wanderer Wearing Art-Colored Glasses, expected to go live before we’re well into the new year.

And I have about four more in current process, not to mention a good handful of others on the docket to follow. This isn’t meant by any means to be a cheap stunt, but is merely the latest expression of my lifelong approach to creative endeavors. Collect: ideas, info, little bits of practice and revisions of them. Do more research, writing, rewriting, art-making, and photo taking. Collect some more. Do some more. Put all of the collections and doings into digital files so that they can be combined, rearranged, edited, and further refined until they begin to coalesce into another recognizable book.

That latter step becomes smoother not only as I get the hang of the various publishing templates that allow me to manipulate the content to my taste and satisfaction but, more especially, as I have been looking at and revising my writings and visual images over the years. Among the hundreds and thousands of texts and pictures are some that begin to stand out, to interact in their files, to show affinities that lead me to combine them and refine them in new ways, and eventually, to become what might be the next book or project idea.

Meanwhile, besides that I continue to have a daily life where sleeping, eating, keeping house, and having social or other obligations, there are other kinds of projects brewing in their own ways and at their own pace. I haven’t had a gallery or other-venue showing of my artwork in a long time, and am getting the itch again, so I think I need to set one up for a time within the coming year to motivate myself to be newly productive in some of my favorite media. I even have a few thoughts about inventions of various kinds that I think might be worth exploring for practical application.

But all of this is still so much fancy and fantasy unless I continue to (a) keep current with the aforementioned daily tasks of living, and (b) plug along with the book projects as much as I’m able. For now, I’m happy to have gotten another baby up and running, and hope you’ll have a look at this latest of my petite coffee-table books and enjoy reading and looking at it as much as I’ve enjoyed incubating and producing all of them. Cheers!

The News from Here

My friends, I’m happy to announce that after many years of working toward it and blurting out to people all over the place that I was going to do so, I’ve finally published my first book. It’s on Amazon and can probably be purchased worldwide already, since my youngest sister, the one who lives in Norway, bought a copy earlier today. My first sale, for which I am of course immensely grateful. If you are interested in laying hands on a print copy of this collection of my art and poetry (aimed mostly at childlike grownups, but most of it will amuse clever children too, and hopefully even the occasional clever adult), please head over to amazon.com to purchase, and I’d be delighted if you’ll review it as well so that it will live higher in the Amazon promotional rotation than otherwise.

In any case, I feel a little like a proud parent, even knowing that my offspring will go forth and do ridiculous things once out of my sight, as all good children do.

I thank my regular readers and blog visitors and friends most deeply and sincerely for your gracious and constant encouragement, which along with that of my family gave me the courage and patience to make this first attempt. I should probably warn you that there are a number of follow-up books in the Sparks pipeline (some serious and many decidedly not) that will, if all goes well, make appearances at regular intervals after this. I will of course explore publishing my full-color work soon, but thought a taste of my longtime favorite style of working in black and white, mostly drawings, would be an appropriate way to make my debut. The cover is in color, if that helps.

book cover image

Miss Kitty’s Fabulous Emporium of Magical Thinking: Drawings & Other Artworks, Tall Tales and Weird Creatures (Volume 1) Paperback – January 25, 2014