Monday, December 14, 2009

Christmas Came Early This Year!

We hear it every day.

“Oh! You blog about children’s books? I just love children’s books! They’re so...so...sweet!

As longtime children’s book bloggers, Elizabeth Bird of the Fuse #8 blog , Julie Danielson of Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast , and I have often wondered what causes so many adults -- sophisticated, cynical, even downright jaded adults -- to get all sloppy and sentimental at the mere mention of children’ s books. It seems that, for many, the topic conjures up a world of gumdrops, rainbows, and fluffy little bunnies that love you forever and like you for always.

Betsy, Jules, and I are not fans of this “fluffy bunny” mentality. In fact, it kind of makes us want to puke.

But, instead of reaching for the barf bag, we decided to write a book together.

The premise of our book is that children's literature is often misunderstood or romanticized by the general public. (Not you, of course. If you read our blogs, you're obviously cool...very cool.) The three of us continue to be amazed by how many people visualize children's authors writing their stories with a quill pen in hand and two or three cute fluffy bunnies curled up at their feet. We're not even sure Beatrix Potter lived like that. Something tells us that, after a hard day of writing, Trixie herself probably kicked-back with a mug of beer and a big bowl of...rabbit stew. And those are the kinds of tales we plan to uncover in our book, tentatively titled WILD THINGS! : THE TRUE, UNTOLD STORIES BEHIND THE MOST BELOVED CHILDREN’S BOOKS AND THEIR CREATORS.

And the good news is that our book proposal has just been accepted by Candlewick, a publisher known for its award-winning books, editorial quality, and high production values (“Oh,” sighed a friend of mine, who has been published elsewhere, “your book will be printed on WHITE paper!”) We feel Candlewick is the perfect “fit” for our book and we couldn’t be happier. In fact, it feels like Christmas came a little early for us this year! During the next few months, Betsy, Jules, and I will continue writing our blogs, of course, but we’ll also be spending a lot of time exploring the rich, complex, and sometimes dark history of children’s literature, not discussed in most texts, histories, and trade books.

As a final note, it should be stressed that no fluffy bunnies – real or stuffed – will be harmed in the writing or publication of our book. However, a few fictional bunnies may end up biting the dust along the way.

WILD THINGS! is going to be irreverent...it’s going to be fun...and -- don't worry! -- it’s going to be written with a lot of affection for the subject matter.

After all, we love children’s books too.

29 comments:

Monica Edinger said...

Congratulations! It will be a wonderful AND beautiful book.

Tarie said...

Congratulations! Looking forward to reading your book. =D

JES said...

Congratulations -- and please tell me you'll somehow shoehorn into it the two images included with this post... ha!

jama said...

Congratulations, Peter! Candlewick (swoon)! What an intriguing premise. Can't wait till 2012 :)!

Susan T. said...

Congratulations! Looking forward to your book!

Jules at 7-Imp said...

I almost spit-taked (spit-took?) my coffee on those images, Peter.

Laurie said...

Very exciting news. Congratulations! Yes, when I worked as a children's book seller in college, I quickly learned that Candlewick was a mark of quality. (I remember recommending Sam Vole and His Brothers by Martin Waddell to picture-book buyers, often. It's very sweet.)

Julia Denos said...

Very excited about this news!! Congratulations. I hopped (not in fluffy bunny slippers or anything) over here from Jules' 7-Imp. Candlewick is perfect for this title.

Venus said...

Congratulations. I love Candlewick. I'm all about removing some bunnies from stories.

Scope Notes said...

Congrats! I cannot wait to read it.

Fuse #8 said...

Magnificent bun rabs. We shall extract them from books with our customary effectiveness.

Sandy D. said...

Oh, I'm looking forward to this! And I hope you have a book signing in the Detroit area (or Ann Arbor!) so I can get my copy signed.

Anonymous said...

HOW COOL! Congratulations!

Saints and Spinners said...

Maybe your author photos should be shot with you wearing bunny slippers and munching on gumdrops with a rainbow cutout display behind your heads.

Just kidding.

Congratulations!

Linda Ashman said...

Congratulations, Peter! I'm sure you've collected some fabulous stories--can't wait to read the book!

Jenny Schwartzberg said...

Congratulations! I can hardly wait to get my greedy hands on the book. In the meantime I'll be watching your blogs to get a hint of what you are planning to cover.

Anonymous said...

Great news. I like you best.

Jeanne said...

At least one of you knows about about E. Nesbit letting her son die through stupid neglect, right? If not, I'll check my sources and get back to you. -- Jeannie B.

Penni said...

Hooray! Congratulations! Looking forward to it.

Please don't forget the Flying Nun. I love that post.

Flo522 said...

Congratulations, Peter!!! Can't wait until you publish this book...

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Fran Manushkin said...

Hey, NUNA89 from Bangalore--do you sell books too? This book would be great to add to your inventory. Kipling may even be in it, who knows?

Sam said...

This is good news indeed!
Candlewick is great!

I can't wait to see what you come up with!

Little Willow said...

Congratulations to the happy trio! :)

Bybee said...

Yes! I'm totally in your camp, and I will buy your book as well as copies for my bookwormy friends!

Bruce Farrar said...

Marvelous project, and while you're discussing the bunny slippers, don't forget to mention that Margaret Wise Brown used to raise and skin her own rabbits.

Anonymous said...

Exactly what I've been waiting for! Congratulations. How can those of us in MI get an autographed copy?

Connie said...

Bound to be the most-anticipated book since Minders of Make Believe ... definitely include the Eliot/Evaline Ness story1

hschinske said...

Ha -- Beatrix Potter and her brother boiled a dead fox (among other animals) for its bones when they were children. They were *good* anatomists.

Helen Schinske