Receiving advanced author copies: Just as exciting today as it was 20 years ago

I recently received advanced copies of Ron’s Big Mission (Dutton, 2009), my most recently illustrated book! It is written by Corrine Naden and the late Rose Blue. I was just as excited last week opening the mail, as I was 20 years ago when first received advanced copies of a book I’d illustrated.

My first books were for the educational market — books as part of reading programs, teacher’s guides, workbooks (though I still do those). Then there was Retold African Myths, written by Eleanora E. Tate, and another book about a Kinte Cloth teddy bear written by my wife.

Finally, after many rejections and almost giving up, I received my first trade picture book contract — Say Hey! A song of Willie Mays, written by Peter Mandel and edited by the great Andrea Pinkney. My longtime dreams had come true.

The book received mixed reviews — some panned it, others praised it. Regardless, I’d done my best. And now seven books later — six publishers, ten authors, seven editors and many, many, many better reviews — I’m still in the business and still loving every minute of it.

Now, please excuse my shameless plug, I’ve got more books to illustrate.


4 Responses to Receiving advanced author copies: Just as exciting today as it was 20 years ago

  1. Doret says:

    I love the look of wonder and posibility on his face. And is that a basketball hoop behind him

  2. Don says:

    Thanks, Doret!

  3. Wow, Don! What a beautiful cover. So rich and full of possibilities.


  4. Congratulations, Don!

    Love the cover.

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