Saturday, October 5, 2013

Thinking About Harnessing Creativity! Video on Tove Jansson!

There's a wonderful story called "Spring Tune", the first in one of my favorite children's book, Tales of Moomintroll. It's a clever demonstration of the elusiveness of creativity as it features a creature called Snufkin, who is a wanderer and the best friend of Moomintroll who always stays home with his family. Snufkin plays harmonica and the passage below describes how he relates to the creation process!.

"It's the right evening for a tune, snufkin thought. A new tune, one part expectation, two parts spring sadness, and for the rest, just the great delight of walking along and liking it.

He had kept this tune under his hat for several days, but hadn't quite dared to take it out yet. It had to grow into a kind of happy conviction. Then he would just have to just his lips to the mouth organ, and all the notes would jump instantly to their places.

If he released them too soon they might get stuck crossways and make only a half-good tune, or he might lose them altogether and never be in the right mood to get hold of them again. Tunes are serious things, especially if they have to be jolly and sad at the same time.

But this evening Snufkin felt rather sure of his tune. It was there, waiting, nearly full-grown- and it was going to be the best he ever made. "

Here is a wonderful video on the life of Tove Jansen the creator of the Moomin's and other books!

A new challenge for me! I'm working on a kickstarter project to help do a print run of my newest published work, an ebook for middle school readers called Babysitter Blues, which I both wrote and illustrated! If I can figure out how to tool around on the kickstarter website I will move actually ahead  with this project! I will keep you all posted here as it progresses! The ebook is available on!

Here's an illustration from the book! In this one Evan is mad at his little sister Nava for making up a song with her harmonica about him and how unhappy he is about babysitting her and their two little twin brothers! 
"Wa wa wa wah! My bwother's not  happy. Wa wa wa wah. my bwother's so sad. wa wa wa wah my bwother's not happy, wa wa wa wah, he's got the babysitter blues!" I'm thinking of putting that little bit to music, and offering  a recording of it as a reward for some level of contribution on  my kickstarter page!

And more pictures from Babysitter Blues!

Evan at his desk!
Louis telling Evan about how believing that the soul goes on after death is like a ship going out
of sight over the horizon. "You can't see it but you know it's there."

Evan trying to coax his little sister out from under the table!
Evan taking his siblings out of children's class after
one of them has a tantrum. Guess which one!

Evan gets a Baha'i prayer book as a gift from Nava!

Evan and his Mom having a good mother/son moment in church.

Cover for Babysitter Blues!

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Kamal's Day and Babysitter Blues make great Ayyam-i-ha gifts!

Kamal's Day and Babysitter Blues make great gifts!

SO grateful that I have two books that I've written and illustrated available on line NOW!  A picture book for the young ones and a ch...