Relations, Easter and Drawing.

Well, we are now in the Easter celebrations for this year. As an apiarist, it is time to put our little insect friends to bed for the winter, making sure they have plenty of food to see them through the cold months that are on the way. Funnily enough, I received a bee -autiful card last Christmas from one of my relations. She is, like me and her siblings, someone who was brought up without television. Even though it was available at the time, my mother and her mother were adamant that we should consider education first, play musical instruments and learn lots of craft.

We all learnt piano and a different musical instrument (violin, flute, harp etc) and we all learned to sew or knit or crochet or tat, or all of the above and would practice our chosen passion every day. Lynnetta’s was drawing and painting (she teaches piano and harp) , mine was my piano and violin, and lately, writing as well. Lynnetta worked in water-colour, and illustrated one of my Alphabet Animals of Australia picture books (AU$18 plus postage – DM me if you are interested)

Here is the card she sent me. She often works in miniature, and her cards sell for $5 each. If you would like to see more of her work, please let me know.

It inspired me to write a cute little story.

It’s called :

Night Story

As the sun slid over the horizon on the planet Hive, Buzz Bumblebee shepherded his two young offspring into their cells.

“Please read us a story, Dad,” his daughters begged.

Buzz sighed.

“You need your sleep, young’uns,” he said. “Tomorrow is a big day in the colony, you know. We are going to the launch ceremony for the Ninja space craft that will be exploring the Widerfields that the last lot of Drones discovered.”

“I know, Dad, but that’s so boring. Please read the one about the Princess and the Dragon.”  Hummer nudged her younger sister and crossed her feet behind her back.

Buzz frowned.

“We are going to the Launch tomorrow, whatever you say! I’ve worked on the Ninja project for nearly 5 months and we need to know what is out there. Maybe we will find more beeings like ourselves. Who knows?”

Both Hummer and Flower grumbled.

Hummer pouted. “There’s no other life on the outside of our world, Dad, it’s all only hope and theory – you know they need to find a place with more water and nectar for our type to exist, and I don’t think they ever will – after all we can’t travel overly far or for very long into the unknown and survive ourselves!”

Buzz raised his antenna, bobbed his head and gave in to the girls demands. He grabbed the storybook from the shelf and sat on the edge of the bed. He stroked Hummer on her head, wiping away a fragment of pollen that she hadn’t cleaned off.

“Stop with the negativity, Hummer.”

Then he turned to Flower, so pretty that he smiled and opened the book on his knee.

” Lay down Flower. Now…”

The girls wriggled into their comfort of their beds and looked at their father with wide and excited eyes, He began to read.

“Once upon a time the Dragon Wasp flew around the Castle. Princess Properlis was extremely frightened. She called upon her warrior band and….”

Buzz stopped and glanced at his children – they were already fast asleep!

Some places to check :-

https://www.facebook.com/Sweetfields-Publisher

https://www.facebook.com/BooksByMaureenLarter

https://www.facebook.com/AlphabetanimalsofAustralia

Re-format, Edit and Design.

Now that I’m back from Cambodia and my body has managed to settle back into a fairly normal routine, I can now concentrate on re-formatting my books for the new company that will do print on demand in Australia.

Be aware – Amazon and KDP no longer send paperbacks books to Australia – so it was necessary to find a new place to print my books. My publishing house is Sweetfields Publishing (message me if you need anymore information). 

Alphacovers

Yay! I’m so happy. After years of designing and editing my books for the Amazon market – and paying an arm and a leg for postage, the convenience of a company in Australia is worth the extra cost in printing.

Amazon has actually done me a favour! My books are still available to the world in general from the KDP platform as well as Amazon. But because Amazon won’t post to Australia, I’d lost my local market. Now that is being put to rights.

It will take a bit of time (and frustration from me as I learn the new company and its rules) but it will be worth it in the end. I have counted up – I have 38 books to changeover – and another couple in the pipeline. Whew!

The re-format really is only to change the sizing, but that requires a bit of tweaking in the design of the books, and, while I’m at it, I might as well edit as well. It is the illustrations that are causing me the most headache, because, in the beginning of my journey, I did not understand how to get the correct dpi requirements for the images. Also, my first three books were illustrated by international visitors, and I haven’t got the originals to re-scan.

On top of that, the story-telling by myself has improved in leaps and bounds, so I need to look at some of the clunky sentences and re-word a little.

This means that I will be bum on computer seat, eyes on computer screen, fingers blistering at the keyboard and the brain squishy with all the thinking I will need to do.

Bookcover2

Bear with me – everything will sort itself out in time.

With Kindness

Maureen.

P.S. In the meantime, my second page ( readeatdream.net/free-childrens-picture-book )  includes my catalogue, and a new short story for your reading pleasure. Let me know what you think of the story.

My next children’s chapter book to be launched is ‘Rosferado – Wizard Extraordinaire’. The tagline could probably be – ‘but he isn’t’!!

There are two more books in the works, too. ‘Larry Lyrebird Laughs’ ( a picture book ) and ‘Rainbows in the Jungle – a Kathy Edwards adventure’ – (a chapter book for MA children).

If you would love to buy some original artwork – limited edition prints or originals – by a talented young artist – have a look at page three  ( readeatdream.net/ sweetfields-products-and-mykelcee-designs )

It’s good to be busy!