It is somewhat of an irony that I need solitude to create stories and images, but when the work is finished, it is sent out and marketed to the widest audience possible. In all the publicity and marketing activities it can be easy to forget that the desired result is a child and reader sharing its offering.

As part of my book promotion, I gave an illustration demonstration at Fundamentals Bookstore in Delaware, Ohio. It struck me once again how fundamental (no pun intended) small independent bookstores are, in putting the right book with a child. These stores don’t sell ISBN’s … they sell stories which they know will suit the child. They know their stuff and conquer bit by bit, serving one person at a time.

Tami and Me


The crowd kept arriving.

They also serve the community around them and in so doing also create a literary one. The lead up to starting time of my event was much the same as other events. Store owner, Tami Furlong, like all good hosts, was concerned that the numbers may not be large and expressed hope that it would be worth my time. But she need not have worried as soon the room was full with every chair taken and others still arriving.

Then came a new sight for me; it was the lawyer from next door carrying his own office chairs up the stairs, so that more children could be seated. These children listened quietly and politely, then the painting started. Soon the paper and tables were wet and the conversation began to flow. It is the busy hum that I am looking for.

This day was definitely worth my time … this was a great communities and I was glad to be part of.