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Okay, I get it. The bird's responses match the syllable pattern you're showing.

But I don't understand why. Does a real stilt's call match the same long pattern?

Either way, your bigger concern is how well a reader might embrace this. So 1) Would they recognize the structure? 2) Would they care? and 3) would the constant repetition grate?

Or put another way, does it make your story  better, or is it an ego-centric effort (I don't mean this in a selfish way, but in a "I'm showing I can do it" way)?

Sorry, but I'm an impatient reader and would start skipping dialogue from the bird quickly. Because following the general rule of "make every word count" following that pattern adds text that fails to move the story forward.
Picture Books (PB) / Re: Difficulties with Art Director
« Last post by Vijaya on Yesterday at 07:24 PM »
Kay, I would suggest you make an appt. to talk with the new art director. It's very difficult when you don't get a lot of direction to begin with only to find out that there are multiple revisions to be made. I'm not an artist, but in my writing contracts, there are generally 1-2 revision passes specified. I have worked with one publisher that kept changing the specifications on me and it was very frustrating and then they killed the project because they didn't know what they wanted in the first place. I wish I had a kill-fee in that contract. I'm sorry you are having a difficult time with the new art director; maybe it will be solved with an honest phone-call or video-call. Good luck! And please let us know how it turns out.
Picture Books (PB) / Re: Difficulties with Art Director
« Last post by kay-meadows on Yesterday at 07:15 PM »
Thanks for commenting. In my contract it doesn't say anything about how long it would take them to get back to me for changes. That's what is really concerning me. I'm on a learning curve here because things went relatively smoothly with the first book. They had very tight deadlines howevere. I didn't have a lot of time for sketches or painting the spreads. I asked for more time on this book but with all of her changes like I mentioned I'm still working on sketches. So the time line is shot!    :-\
Hi Marica. I'm confused by what you have. Make sure each new speaker gets a new paragraph. Also, does the bird speak in English and it's own language or is this how the children perceive it's speech? Like they imagine what he says? If they speak English, cut the bird sounds or use them minimally for flavor. If they speak bird, how do the kids know what to say in response? Make it clear.

I'm just realizing this is two birds, Lawyer and Rocky.  Proper paragraphing will clear that up. I hope this helps.
Picture Books (PB) / Re: Illustration copyright in a series?
« Last post by Debbie Vilardi on Yesterday at 06:20 PM »
You can purchase the rights to the art. It will cost more to do so. I believe that allows you to commission a new artist with the same style to mimic your earlier books if needed.  This article might help: And this one: But I suspect you need to own the rights to the art as the text on the character will already be yours. You may wish to post in Ask a Lawyer with this question to get a legal opinion.
Picture Books (PB) / Re: Difficulties with Art Director
« Last post by Debbie Vilardi on Yesterday at 06:12 PM »
I'm not an illustrator, but I do freelance as an author. My first thought is to read your contract carefully. Does it cover requested changes and the time line for them. There is often a timeline for them to get back to you as well as for you to resubmit sketches. That part is not uncommon as far as I've heard. It is unfortunate that you weren't given much direction to start with though. Knowing what's expected sure does save time later. Sorry I can't be of more help and that this is happening to you.
Picture Books (PB) / Illustration copyright in a series?
« Last post by ChristyL on Yesterday at 02:15 PM »
Hello- I'm a writer and self-publishing a book...specifically a series of picture books based on one character.  I know that typically the illustrator will retain the copyright to their illustrations.  My question is who would own the copyright to the main character? Or should this be spelled out in the contract? I would love to keep the same illustrator for all of the books, but what if something doesn't work out? I need to keep the copyright to the character so that I can continue the series based on this character. 

I want to be fair to the illustrator, and also protect myself.

Picture Books (PB) / Difficulties with Art Director
« Last post by kay-meadows on Yesterday at 11:40 AM »
I have run into something I do not know if it is normal.

I have only illustrated one book for a regional publisher and the process went fine with the art director at the time. There were a few changes and I was able to meet the deadline no problem. They seemed very excited about what I illustrated and even said they think it will be a great seller.

They asked me to do a second book and I find out there is a new art director.
I received the contract and let them know the amount of time I need to do the sketches and the color spreads. They send the text and there are only a few directions for what they want as far as the artwork is concerned. I proceed with the sketches. Once done I sent them to the art director.  I also, sent over 3 choices for covers and she made changes on the one they picked. She took a couple of weeks and sent back the sketches with changes on every single page.

I was a bit shocked at all of the changes she made and asked was I supposed to redo (re-sketch) all of the pages with changes? I mentioned that we were now going into the painting stage of the time line. She wrote back and said that I only had to send in  5 of the spreads and make the changes to the cover and just loosely draw the updated sketches. So, I do this. Then a few days later she sends my sketches back again with more changes. Also, she sent a sketch she did of a completely different cover. This really surprised me. Is this normal?

The cover was completely different than what I did and at no time had she sent me directions to do a new cover. As an artist I find this offensive. Does she really think I should paint her illustration?

I am easy to work with but with all of her changes I am very concerned that the time line and deadline are out the window.

I emailed her asking if she can extend the deadline and made the comment that I wasn't comfortable painting her cover idea and that I would be fine just being the interior illustrator for the book and she has not responded. I resent the email but thought maybe coming here could help me understand better what is expected of me.

Any advice will be greatly appreciated.
Not sure if this is the right place to post. I'm not looking for a full on critique. I'd just like to know if what I'm doing sounds reasonable.

Set up. The animals find an injured black-necked stilt (long legged shore bird) and help it get to the farm for help. When you listen to audio of these birds chattering away, they say, KIP KIP KIP and for real it's SUU SUU SUU and you can convince yourself that it's really SUu, i.e., descending accent. (Also. I don't do this so pardon me for not using the correct terms!)

What I'm asking (below) is about my plan for the overall pattern in a chapter. But to give you an idea of how the story/dialog goes, here are just a few lines:
Marica and Missy ran to meet them. Marica knelt down in front of Rocky and the bird and said, “Well, hello! Who might you be?”

“Kip-kip-kip. Kip-kip-kip,” said the bird. “I am Lawyer. I am Lawyer. I was lost. I was lost. Now I’m found. Now I’m found. Please help. Please help. Kip-kip-kip. Kip-kip-kip.”

“Pleased to meet you,” Marica looked into the bird’s red eyes and smiled. “What happened to your other leg, Lawyer?”

Lawyer wrapped his right wing more tightly around Rocky’s back, leaned more heavily against the vicious pit bull, and slowly pulled a leg out from under his feathers. “Kip-kip-kip. Here it is. Here it is. It is broke. It is broke. Please help. Please help. Kip-kip-kip,” Lawyer said looking at his dangling leg.

Marica, Missy, and everyone gathered ’round and gasped! A one-pink-legged bird was one thing. A one-pink-legged, and one-pink-dangling-legged bird was quite another.

“Let’s get you to the patio so we can take a closer look,” Marica said. “Is it okay if I carry you, Lawyer?”

“Yes it is. Yes it is. Pick me up. Pick me up. Thank you. Thank you,” Lawyer said and spread both wings.

(Yes. I know "Lawyer" has to be slurred! But he has to be Lawyer b/c that's an old name for black-neck stilts.)

So here is how Lawyer's dialog goes through to the end of the chapter (where K is "kip"):


In subsequent chapters, he's just going to talk in the shorter pattern. But I felt like in this chapter where he's the star of the show, I should back out of the pattern in the same way I went into it. Does that make sense?
Research / Re: How to read more books
« Last post by Michael Sussman on January 17, 2022, 08:26 AM »
You've received some great advice.
You can also search YouTube for "picture books read aloud."
Or enter the title of a picture book you're interested in. I just entered my recent PB--"Duckworth, the Difficult Child--and found ten videos of it! All illegal (infringement of copyright) of course, but whatcha gonna do?  :shrug
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