I didn't get a chance to put up these pictures last week, because of the dash to get ready to go to Seattle (we went to Seattle twice in one week, with the class I spoke to last Tuesday and then going back up for the conference; it's only about a 3-1/2-hour drive, but you know, it adds up). In going to the Seattle SCBWI conference, we had to miss the Portland one, and one of my favorite editors was here to speak at it. Luckily, she was able to come in a day early, and we went to meet some donkeys :-)
This is me with Abigail Samoun, of Tricycle Press.
She's in the acknowledgments of Blackbringer because she was so pivotal for me in the writing of my first novel. We met at an SCBWI national conference (in LA) some years ago (4, maybe?) and she followed up with me after, expressing interest in my faerie art. She asked if I'd thought of writing a story to go with the characters (who were Magpie, Poppy, and Whisper) and I answered that, in fact, I'd begun a mid-grade novel. She offered to take a look at it (eek!) and I sent her the first 6 chapters . . . and she liked them! She wanted to see more. So . . . I had to write more.
And that, I think, is why Blackbringer was written. I mean, why I was able to deal with my issues with perfectionism and finish it. Her feedback was always wonderful, and she has this incredible knack for offering editorial feedback that never put me on the defensive, but just made me think, "Yeah, she's so right." Really: amazing. A couple of years passed as I worked on it, and the book was eventually published by another publisher (Putnam), but Abi was a huge part of the process.
THANK YOU ABI!
Anyway, we went out to Apifera Farms to meet her blog friend Katherine and Katherine's donkeys, who as you see from the first photo above, love pie.
Lucky for the donkeys, Katherine makes a mean pie. This is not a "donkey pie" per se, despite its little decoration, but the donkeys did get to enjoy some, and so did we:
Um, my battery is in red again, so no time for links! Heh, I don't mind an excuse to skip links :-)